When I was younger, I spent a lot of time being unhappy. Looking back, I can't really remember what any of it was for, but I know distinctly that I wasn't enjoying life all that much. A lot of it was just something I had to get through until ... well, I don't know what, exactly. It was all just something I had to survive. I did, thankfully, which is great. This season just always reminds me of then. Particularly, because it's about to get bitter cold. I remember when I was younger thinking "Who cares if it's so cold? What's it really matter? Be cold; I'll be colder." It doesn't really make much sense, but I was young and tough and middle class and white and that was really hard.
Now that I'm a little bit older, and wiser if you're asking me to be honest, I tear up when something cute happens on How I Met Your Mother or when I rewatch "Abed's Uncontrollable Christmas." I'm not the tough person I thought I was then.
Now the question is begged, however, what do I have to keep me warm when the world gets so cold? I've gotta admit, trying to be angry enough to not feel the cold is exhausting and I think it might be causing upper back problems for me. Especially when I've got so much to be happy about. It's just not working this year, so it looks like I'm going to freeze.
Of course, that's only until I consider nights like the ones I had last week. Thursday was Christmas with the guys. I don't know if you've seen the video, but I've got a pretty unique set of friends. Anyway, on Thursday, we went out to eat, may have shopped for onesies, then we watched Christmas movies and TV shows and gave each other presents. Which may have happened in the onesies that may or may not have been purchased. It's the reason I got to give a gift that looks like this -
That night keeps me warm.
And Tuesday. Well, Tuesday was a night too. It was one of the few times in my life that I knew the gift I had given was exactly the right one. And giving it, somehow, was better than any gift I could have received. Sharing something with someone else wasn't just a gift for them, it was one I gave to me. It was a night that reminded me of the "Crazy notion that the longest, coldest, darkest nights can be the warmest and brightest.”
That night keeps me warm.
It's caring less about how much money I'm spending on someone and more about how I can make them feel. I don't think anyone will ever look back on their life and wish they had spent less money or time or love on the people that are most important to them.
That keeps me warm.
And the people that will remind me of this post as soon as I start complaining about how stupid it is to live in a state this cold and with such bad drivers. They, too, will keep me warm.
Merry Christmas, my friends. My loves. My warmth. This year, because of all of you, I got exactly what I wanted and everything I ever needed.