Thursday, December 15, 2011

The dissonance is so much worse this time of year. Christmas is not important to me. Matt and I were not big holiday celebrators. The last year he was here, we did get a tree, he got us new stockings, and we did presents. But it was because we wanted to. Not because it was expected. I don't know. I just hate this time of year because of the dissonance between my way of doing things and the requests and expectations of my parents. With Matt here, it was fine. Tolerable. Still a drain, but we had each other. We had the same thoughts and feelings about the whole thing. We had sounding boards in each other. Reflection. Validation.

What is left is just the wrongness, the annoyance, the dissonance. The difference between my parents and me is so much  louder when there are things expected, "celebrations" expected - and I am feeling it so much. And "going along with it," agreeing to attend these events that are not meaningful to me, I am so full of resentment. I am a twisted wreck, and I am tired and so incredibly fucking sad that my real family, my match, is not here anymore. My parents are not bad people. They're fine. But I am and always have been an oddity to them. And now there is the added trying very hard that they are doing. Which I feel like a jerk for not enjoying. They want so badly for me to be happy. I know. But what was true before is still true now: I don't like bags full of presents I don't like and can't use. I cannot get excited for cartoon christmas movies. Giving me more and more of the things I do not like will not make me like them. We are not a close family, and pretending we are wears on me.

It's just family stuff.

In the Before, I had my reality check. I had perspective. I had - I don't know how to say it. Affirmation? Confirmation? Alliance? Matt and I lived in the same reality. Same context. We talked about family stuff. We found humor in it, drew lines in it, supported each other, listened. Now I feel like there is just dissonance and I am alone in it. I feel even more like a jerk, because while I am not rude, I do not have half the calm gracefulness I could muster when he was here. When I was calm and rooted and far more able and willing to say No to things that weren't true for me. Now I am far more likely to be a passive crab about it, which irritates me, and then I start crying again. I want him here to not have obligatory celebrations with. I want the man who thinks like me. The one who sees no conflict at all in having fun decorating a christmas tree while not really caring to get presents, give presents, or call up family members. I've got no team anymore. I've got no one like me, not even me. I fucking hate christmas.



  1. Agree about the dissonance at this time of the year. At times, it can be difficult to endure. I can only imagine how it must be for you. I know this will sound a little strange, but I think my own situation was made easier by my dad's before-his-time death which sort of wrecked christmas for my family. When Don died next, it further wrecked things so that my mom and youngest brother and I could really care less about festivities. For the three of us, we have so many sad memories associated with christmas, that we just try to get through the season as deftly as possible. I have another brother who lives in another city. He has two kids. He was not present to care for either my dad or Don. He wasn't there when they died. Each christmas, he has pressured the three of us to celebrate in a way that we are unwilling and unable to do. It truly grates on me that he can't seem to "get" how the three of us feel -- that we have nothing that we wish to celebrate -- that we have nothing left to give. I wish that more people were sensitive to how it feels to be wounded. I wish they would learn to back off and leave us to do what we feel like doing during those times when the rest of the world is busy dancing on its head.

  2. amen. Show your love by respecting other peoples' truth, not by foisting something unwanted on them.

    Matt and I had just been discussing, on our last visit up to my folks, how they seem to be regretting that we were never a close family, and now they are just trying to make us one, or tell themselves we are one. It was weird then, and it's even weirder now. I see that they are trying. I just feel even more alone in the world next to it.

  3. I am with you both so much. I was never a fan of Christmas, and then worked retail for so many years which is just so exhausting and repellent: the frantic busy-ness of it and the unnecessary gifting and just all of it. And now, now everything is so much harder. Anna and I are doing what we can: we have a nice-smelling tree, and ornaments from her childhood, and some pretty lights, and I'm even cooking Christmas dinner for whoever is nearby, which I hope will be enjoyable and relaxing. But it's just all dusted with sadness and difficulty.

    My friend calls visiting her family in a nearby town "command performances". My family tries, they really do, but it just doesn't really help. How could it.

  4. oh my - command performances. Awesome.

  5. Oh. Yes.
    But I do it all for my kids and my Mum. It kinda makes it bearable when I do it for them.