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It Happens Every Year

Posted by Dr. D , 29 November 2010 · 63 views

It happens every year.  The calendar reads November and I live where Thanksgiving isnít known, much less celebrated.  Thatís okay.  I never liked Thanksgiving beyond the flavor of turkey.  There was always something hypocritical about it.  Feasting in memory of Indians whose generosity saved the lives of the people who would later kill them all.  

But the problem lies in that hidden sheet below November.  That page where Santa lives and choirs become popular again.  The page where we pretend that Jesus was born and wise men somehow went west to Bethlehem by following a star in the east even though they came from the east.  

Christmas is not a time to be alone and yet it cannot be shared with those who are not family.  It simply isnít the same.  Others can flatter you by claiming that you are ďlikeĒ family but there is always that faint restraint that becomes uncomfortable and your presence an intrusion upon what truly belongs to families.

I always place a Christmas tree beside the fireplace.  Magdalena decorates it elaborately.  We exchange gifts and then there is that long silence where the past steps from the backyard of our minds.  The squeals and laughter of small children echo in the far distance and my daughter delights in the doll that pees and my son slaps his fist into the pocket of a new baseball glove.  It comes in an instant and fades away quickly as if in storage for another year.

I lift my glass of Baileys and announce, ďTo the Indians,Ē and Magdalena responds but has no idea what Iím talking about.




Au contraire...it may not be the same, but can be just as fulfilling. We only have my husband's brother left in town...with cousins, aunts and uncles spread too thin with their own traditions on Christmas Day. About fifteen years ago we began inviting people over in similar situations, with little to no family. It has now become our own tradition to have an open house and have as many as 75 people in and out on Christmas Day.

It is very satisfying for us to do this for people, they are truly appreciative to fill a void that often leads to melancholy on what should be a joyous day and laughter fills the house.

Merry Christmas! :santa:
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