THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS

I was about five years old. I got a doll for Christmas, and I remember playing with it in the corridor waiting for my mother and grandmother to finish packing our things. We went to the aunt’s home. Everyone went there. All the aunts, uncles, their kids and even great-grandmother. As far as I remember, it was the last Christmas when my great-grandmother was with us. It was the last Christmas when I saw everyone. It was the last Christmas when I think it felt like Christmas. I was too little to understand and remember how was it. However, the picture from the twenty years ago gives me a feeling that it was special.

It feels like it was the last time I had Christmas. It may have been the holidays I was dreaming of my entire life. I remember myself when I was a kid. I was waiting for the day to decorate a Christmas tree and entire home; to write a letter to Santa Clause or pack the presents silently. I was listening to the phone calls expecting to hear that someone was coming to us or we are going to some relatives for Christmas. However, most of the time I heard excuses.

My excitement for Christmas was slowly fading away. Finally, it was killed in the last year of school. It’s been 8 years since I became afraid of Christmas. The fear was switched to hatred, and then it turned to fear again. However, there was always hope that a miracle will happen, and I will have an escape like I had back then, 8 year ago. Every year I remember that afternoon on the sofa and seeing the warm lights on the Christmas tree. I do not remember the feeling, but I know that it was the moment I needed. Even though that memory fades away a little bit more every year, I know that it’s the moment I am still looking for. A hope that I might have Christmas I always dreamt of.

For months ago I knew that I wouldn’t have Christmas I wanted. Not this year. Again. Of course, there’s still a little hope of a miracle. The one I saw in numerous romantic movies I watched recently. I tried to get into a festive mood. I have never tried this hard. I had never had a chance and circumstances that would let me work that hard to break the curse of Christmas.

Last weekend I almost gave up. The problem was quite childish. I was unable to bring home a Christmas tree from the market. No car, no man; only me. A skinny, weak girl who had no strength to carry a tree for at least 2 kilometers. That moment the same threatening Christmas thought hit me for the first time this year. If I fail to create a family, my all holidays would be like this. Alone and without a real Christmas tree.

Finally, I accepted my situation and decided to do as much as I can do for my first personal Christmas in a new home. While I was trying to fight the sadness, my friend decided to give me a miracle. I call it a miracle because someone offering help without being asked for is so rare. I did not expect her to come to me with all her family to get me a Christmas tree on a Saturday night.

The tree is twice as big as I planned. I have never had such a huge tree in my life. That night it felt like a five-year-old me has come back full of excitement. But the height of the tree does not matter. It’s the fact that a friend who could spend an hour for herself while her baby is sleeping, takes all her family and drive 20 kilometers to get me a tree. It’s one of the few beautiful things I have experienced during the Christmas time.

I tried to remember other good things that happened to me during Christmas time. I sat about 15 minutes looking at the lights on my plastic tree in the bedroom which was supposed to be my main tree a week ago. But I could not. Is it possible that nothing good has happened? Or all the memories are overwritten by bad accidents?

It feels like last Christmas was only a few months ago. Those memories are so bright and loud. They are haunting me for weeks. 24th of December was full of hope. On the 25th, around 3 p.m. everything turned into a disaster. It feels like a commemoration of someone’ death is coming.

It’s after 2 a.m. already. I am tired, but I do not want to sleep. I do not want tomorrow to come. I wish I could skip all these last festive-themed days of the year and wake up on the 1st of January when everything is over. No matter how hard I tried, the fear is back. However, I am not afraid to see the ghost from the last year. His appearance would be appreciated.

I am afraid of the unknown; what else might happen. I know that negative thoughts attract negative situations. But I am afraid to have expectations that can be broken again. I am not sure what is worse to live through another shit on holidays or risk to lose your belief in the future at all. However, I want to be able to stay “maybe next year” when it would be over, and have that tiny amount of hope I have for the last 20 years. I want to survive the hardest week of the year as painless as possible.

xxx

I hope your Christmas is better than mine. Appreciate your annoying relatives and having a privilege to run from one party to another. That’s what matters the most on holidays – to be together at least once a year.

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