Saturday, December 23, 2006

I Wish I Had a River

 I wish I had a river
That I could skate away on...
             Joni Mitchell
I have all my good enough Christmas plans in place. I am saving wrapping presents for tomorrow, so it will seem Christmas Eve-y. My new couch arrived, and it is absolutely wonderful. Meg has bought the cinnamon buns we always have Christmas morning. I am working very hard to be upbeat when I talk to anyone, and I definitely don't want to be a downer here.
But through my dark glasses, it feels as if even those I know who also suffer Christmas depression, who rush around too much and superhuman their ways through the Holiday madness into exhaustion, are doing better than I am. Mostly, I am lonely, a complaint I have whined over all year long. I have even had well meaning people offer advice ranging from relax and enjoy your solitude to well, get your butt out there and meet new people, join a group, volunteer, DO something. None of these people have been living with chronic pain, facing, then recovering, from major surgery. I have no doubt that I will do something as soon as I am able, but still I'm sad and alone, during all these long, boring days leading up to Christmas.
I have only to think of anyone who is incarcerated, or mourning the death of a loved one, or sick, or homeless, or hungry, or caught in a war over which they have no control, and I feel ashamed. I know as well as most, and better than some, that this is the season for giving, not throwing a pity party. A time to celebrate the renewing of light, both at Solstice and Hanukkah, and soon a celebration of family and heritage at Kwanzaa. A time to meditate on the birth of a child to a virgin, an event which many think is part of a cycle reaching back to ancient times. A time to be thankful for the family and friends I do have.
And I am thankful, truly, and do meditate on the meaning of the season, and, in my own small way celebrate, by having a tree and giving gifts. I have simply been stuck at home for too many days, with no way to get out and get moving. When I can drive, I will take my shiny bluewalker with the seat (for when I am dizzy or tired) and go people watch while I walk from one end to the other of the Mohegan Sun Casino- I live between the Sun and Foxwoods, which is the biggest casino in the western hemisphere. What a weird thing to have in the middle of the woods only 5 miles away!
I need to walk, and casinos are better than malls, because I spend less. (My gambling limit is $20 three times a year, and I stick to it.) Meanwhile, between bouts of misery and sorrow, I am working to be busy here inside, despite the gray days New England has been blessed with lately. I read journals, play online games and solitaires and roam the Internet. I sit on my new couch for a different view of the living room (in which I have been living, day and night, since October 20th). I am even sending out a few Christmas cards, though it is lucky that Christmas really ends on Twelthnight, or Three Kings' Day. This gives me plenty of time!
I really do wish those who love the holidays, or value the religious aspects of their holidays, or are lucky enough to be busy with family and friends and are loving it, the very best joy of the season. And for those who are struggling, I hope you can make it through the season with some sense of hope for the future. I know from personal experience that human nature is strong and resilient, and enables us to endure and even grow and change.
Blessings, Margo


dklars said...

I know I'm not feeling the usual "up" I feel around this time of year.  Every year it seems to get a bit worse.  I wish you lived across the road so you could at least come over and have some tea on occasion, or share our Christmas meal with us.  I have a soft spot for those who are alone during the holidays.  Even those of us who are not alone can be lonely this time of year.  Don't worry, only a few more days and the new year will be here and we can put all this in the past.  For as much as it's worth, I wish you peace and joy this Christmas.

hope5555 said...

Hey great words of wisdom here but just know that you have LOTS of friends in j-land!  It's not the same as in-person company, but it sure helps a lot of people (myself included) who feel isolated, either occasionally or chronically. I've been a little blue this season myself, a little more "bah-humbug" than "ho ho ho". One of these years I'm going to throw a "festivus for the rest of us" (like on Seinfeld) with "feats of strength" and "the airing of grievances". Somehow that sounds more satisfying than the annual spend-a-thon and eat-a-thon that we usually have.

lisa41076 said...

Awwwwwwwww Margo, I understand feeling lonely at Christmas, my dad and I do'nt speak , did I tell you that ? I also miss my sweet grandma who died 7 years ago in August . I really enjoy your friendship, I think you are a wonderful lady with such a big heart and who is a true friend who I cherish, Love Ya and Hugs Lisa

dbaumgartner said...

A very insightful post!  I am right there with you.

Just remember I am there with you and I do hope that we will find the opportunity to share a warm fire and a nice cup of tea.

I send you hugs and much much love this holiday season.


ksquester said...

Most people do not realize how bad depression can be and how intensified it is during the holidays.  I am hoping you can soon get out to that casino and people watch all you want!  Then come back and tell us about it.  haaaaaa   Merry Christmas Margo and you have made so many accomplishments over the past year and a half.  Anne

luvmort said...

I love that song.