Winter? No, thanks.

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I have this love hate relationship with winter. Well, let’s be honest; it’s mostly hate. As far as Christmas goes, there are mixed emotions there too. Festivities, I do like, and I even had a moment this year when I thought, albeit briefly, how much I LIKE having people show up at my tiny house and dirty all my dishes. 

This is really quite funny because we actually got super lucky and my father-in-law decided he should order Christmas Eve dinner from Florentino's. So there was little for us to do except make a salad, that Ro-Tel cheese dip and a pumpkin pie. We cleaned the house, hid the bodies, and popped open some wine too. Huh. Looky there, we DID do something! But okay it was nothing compared to the trouble most people go through for dinner - especially if you are my mother-in-law who never fails to delight us with a gazillion dishes that would make Rachel Ray look like she must have slept her way to the top. In fact, my new saying around my MIL is “No problem, Lynn. It’s the LEAST I could do - literally.” 


Anyway, family was here and that was very nice. Presents, big fat shedding tree, awesome eggplant parmesan, wine and a great video clip of my MIL and SIL, Lauren singing Santa Baby that I will break out for all the internet world at a most convenient later date, if you know what I mean. And that was just Christmas Eve.

The next day was Chaos Christmas at said in-laws house, which is tradition. No matter where it is, it’s slightly chaotic due to the mass of people and the personalities at hand. More presents! Throw in some cheesecake, more wine... a little more .... you get the idea. And what is a major holiday without someone falling down the stairs? But Grandpa is fine, says nurse Lauren. 

So the holiday was good. Great, really. 

But back to the hate, just in case you thought I was turning over a new leaf.  Winter is winter. I am not a winter person. And while it seems a little too early to complain about the massive SNOW bomb that dropped on NJ/NY on Monday, the cloudy skies are like EVERYWHERE and I feel the blues creeping up like bad underwear. To combat the winter blues this year I have started shooting heroin. Not really, I just wanted to see if you were paying attention!

Actually, I have been forcing myself to read more, listen to more music and generally have more conversations with other adults. Sounds simple, but when you are a natural hermit, like I am, these things require effort. Were it not for the internet and unlimited texting, I would be a paler version of, well, me. And slightly weepy. Okay, REALLY weepy. 

Why, you ask? Well, I’ve been thinking about that. My dislike for winter is not as random as one might think. Bear with me in this jaunt of ugly introspect:

All the horrible things I did; they were all during colder months. The major mistakes; yes, those ones that no matter how I carefully word the details, they still add up to one word: mistake. Wrong move. Error. Not that I am in danger of making the same mistakes. But my, how the winter wind still brings the ache of regret to my chest and the sting of embarrassment to my face. It’s as far back as 25 years that I can recall how winter brought about my failures. And I guess it sort of makes sense. Winter is the dying time. 

I get that we need to forgive ourselves and move on. If getting married, moving across the country twice and having a lovely family isn’t moving on, I don’t know what is. But it’s a bit of a Pavlovian thing, ya know? It’s involuntary. So there’s that to contend with.

Then there is family. My family whom I miss dearly. While I certainly have great family from Mike here in the Northeast, I have to say, I truly miss being around people who can finish my sentences. People whose faces I can read effortlessly. People who absolutely know how fun it is to use the Oklahoma Offender Lookup database, remember the plaid bellbottom jeans and spread gravy over okra. 

I never really cared that much about Christmas with my family before but, as an adult, it is so much more fun. I adore my sister tipsy, my brother and brother-in-law playing with the kids and yelling at my nephew for his abivilance about college. I like my mom’s mashed potatoes, watching original Star Trek with my dad and my grown nieces knowing looks. I like fighting over those damn thirty year old elf ornaments. 

That’s just the holidays. I think about my family all year long. Friends too. When birthdays roll around I wish I was there to take my brother to lunch or drop off a sinful cupcake to my best friend. I wish I could attend ball games of my friends kids or buy the shit they are selling for school fundraisers. I miss out on girls night, important college football rivalries and DCHS homecoming. 

Woe is winter. Woe is me. I miss you.

That seems important to say. I guess, perhaps the worst feeling would be that you didn’t know how much I appreciate and miss my 1st home. That you thought my life to be peachy without you, that I could possibly forget good times.

So winter sucks for those reasons, but I’m working on it. And all of that to say that you should be especially nice to me until May. In May NJ is actually pretty nice and I will post photos of how much fun I’m having. Until July when I want the kids to go back to school. And I turn 40 - which is a whole different bag of poop that I will ignore for a bit longer.

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