I don't get that geeked up about the holidays anymore. I don't put up a tree or hang lights on the house. I don't fix a special dinner or exchange presents. I don't sing Christmas carols or watch those insipid Hallmark Christmas movies. I'll go to church on Christmas Eve. I might just stay home and binge watch Star Trek and Elementary on my phone.
Most of my family has passed away. Those who are still alive, I never felt that close to. Other than hanging out with friends, I don't see the need to get worked up over holidays if you don't have a lot of family and loved ones to spend them with.
My oldest brother and last sibling died about this time 10 years ago. He was my last close family member. Since 1976, I've lost: parents; stepfather; siblings; grandparents; assorted cousins; nieces and nephews. I have a few family members still alive, but we aren't all that close and I haven't talked to them in a while. I have no immediate family left. Not that I'm angry at them. Our family was just not that close.
Other than a few close friends and my Facebook family, a few of whom I have met and spent time with in the real world, I spend most of my time alone. Which I tend to prefer. I'm a loner by nature. I like to live by my own schedule and come and go as I please. I get a little depressed sometimes when I don't have someone to spend time with. But lack of contact with others does not debilitate me. I won't say that I'm in the soundest of mind, but I could be a helluva lot worse. You don't have to have a bake sale for me. I'm functioning fairly well on my own.
All I'm saying is that during this holiday season, if you have family and loved ones that are still around, spend time with them. Give them just a little tighter and longer hug. Tolerate just a few more of their bad jokes and weird quirks. Put up with their annoying kids and/or pets for just a little longer. Choke down just a little more of the science projects that pass for their cooking. Because that's what the holidays are for. Strengthening the ties between you and the ones you love.
And if you know of someone who, like me, doesn't really have anyone to spend time with, check in on them. Call them up, go visit them, at the least, send them a text message saying that you're thinking about them. That contact might be the difference in their lives between hope and hopelessness. This time of year can be tough for those who have no one. If you can, ease their burden, just a little. #JustSayin