What Christmas Is For

To be perfectly honest, I don't feel like celebrating anything at all right now. Real life has a pretty good way of taking the Christmas right out of me. I mean, it's like "Jesus was probably born in the middle of April. Let's just all admit it's cold and that we hate it so much more than the sunshine and stay inside of our houses until we feel better about the world." Am I right? It's not too hard to remember what I'm to be merry about though. The heat is on and the food has flavor. My car always starts and my job direct deposits my paycheck. And my friends and family.

Yes, them. More than the food I consume or the heat I absorb, they keep me alive. They provide me the strength to get up in the morning and the peace of mind when I lie down to sleep at night. Time with them is what I look forward to and look back upon.

They're Christmas for me.

And please don't give me anything about "remembering the reason for the season." I am. I'm quite confident about it. I know what I've been given and I know where it's from. There's no question of that. If you don't think loved ones are that reason, well, okay. It's your holiday too. You honor Christmas in your way. I'll honor it in mine.

This year, more than anything else, they're my Christmas.

To each of you I hold dear, know that your efforts to love me have not gone unnoticed. I know it can't be easy sometimes. I get stubborn and selfish and sad. Does it help to know that I'm trying though? I want to stop. You all are slowly showing this helpless man through a maze he created.

Most importantly this holiday season though, spend some time with whoever you love most. Find shelter in those willing to cover you and stay away from those who aren't. We never have enough time to waste on people like that. Above all, find where that warmth in your life comes from and huddle there as long as you can.

We've got a long winter ahead.