A month ago today, nothing was in the works. Tomorrow, things will be different for the first time in >6 years. I feel good about it. Spouse feels good about it. Now let’s do it!
I have . . . apparently . . . made friends on Twitter! (At least) 2 anyway. Complex feelings about that because it’s been a great while since that’s been true.
At my prompting, Spouse and I discussed how we might like to celebrate Christmas/Winter Solstice this year (which we stopped doing at all some time ago). I had 2 main points. (1) I pretty much no longer want to receive tangible gifts from other people because Stress (when they’re often So Wrong), although I quite enjoy occasionally getting tangible gifts to give myself. On the other hand, “how gifts are supposed to work” (i.e., opening up something that you actually wanted to receive) remains a compelling idea. So I proposed that we try to come up with “experiences” to give each other. Think creatively. He’s interested. (2) Therapy + trying to fix a poem that doesn’t quite work => determining which aspects of a Party actually appeal to me. They are: decorations; foods I like; festive drinks (probably not alcohol, though); delicious dessert; dancing (if relevant); some enjoyable conversations with interesting people. I suggested to Spouse that we try incorporating these aspects into our winter holiday celebrations. He agreed with enthusiasm(!). He suggested that we go to NYC for Christmas in 2015. See the Nutcracker, or something similar.
Spouse shared that his favorite part of Christmas is the pretty lights, but also decorations (I believe outside decorations). We haven’t done a tree in years, but we have had Christmas lights up during December & January, on the room divider, for the last 2 years. Maybe we could string lights on our balcony too? Lots of our neighbors do that, but we never have.
I went for a midnight walk around the neighborhood last night even though it was bitterly cold because I knew I probably wouldn’t do it tonight.
Got rid of more things Monday. A cabinet I bought (fairly recently) whose door hinge broke, and I didn’t feel up to trying to fix it. And a So Wrong gift I got years and years ago that I’ve always felt guilty about.
Odd to be talking to Spouse about my family of origin’s gift-giving traditions (Stress! Omg, Stress!), and not be distressed at all. Even when I flashed on a mental image of he and I somehow being back in Chicagoland for a F family Christmas, and having nothing in common with anybody. (Spouse: “well, we never had anything in common with anyone”.) Yes, we never had anything in common with anyone, but I kept thinking that was something I could fix, if I just hit upon the right solution. Also, I was intimately familiar with the rhythms of the family, even though most of them didn’t make a lot of sense to me. And I knew a lot of the incidents that were important to other people. Now, though, everyone else has 9 years of stories we don’t know anything about (and would likely find boring if we did). And I know nothing of the current rhythms. Frankly, I’m guessing I’ve been completely displaced, probably in favor of my sister, so that if I somehow did go back, there would literally be no role for me to occupy, except for ‘visiting stranger’. Although since I have a longstanding history with everyone, instead of being on their best behavior as they generally would for a visiting stranger, I’d likely be ignored and/or condescended to, Just Like Old Times. (I’m thinking about this scenario now much more than I did at dinner. But I’m still not upset in any way. It’s just a thought exercise.)
I don’t miss any of these people. I don’t miss any of the Party elements I actually enjoy. (The Stress of F family gift giving cancels out almost everything else.) I definitely don’t miss everyone fawning over my boring brother and his boring job and his boring gobs of money.
Sort of related, I was recently thinking about people I went to grade school and high school with. And about how, if I ever ran into them somewhere (which I wouldn’t, but as a thought exercise), we would have absolutely nothing to talk about. Most of them still live in Chicagoland, are conservative Republicans (just like their parents), are likely bigoted against all sorts of things that matter a lot to me. Most of them are probably parents too, so they might want to bore my ears off about their kids.
Hey, that reminds me: I haven’t dreamed about TK or AAK in quite a while! That’s a victory! I definitely don’t want to talk to either of them ever again. Or CS (whom I did, alas, dream about a few days ago, although I don’t remember the details).
I was hoping something intriguing would pop into my mind as I wrote this stuff, but there’s nothing meaty enough. (Otoh, I really can’t stay up all night tonight, so…) I’ll need to go to bed shortly.