what is it about the holidays…

that makes them so doggone difficult once we grow up?

what is it about families that makes us play tug’a war when really, all we want to do is be together and love each other and get along? what makes the water so cloudy? how do things get so murky and bent outta shape? these are the things i’m thinking about now that i’ve abandoned my original thanksgiving plans, and prepare to board a plane (my first time in the air in a loooong time; i won’t even tell you how long) tomorrow night so i can join holly and her family for thanksgiving.

i find myself longing for simpler times more often than i’d like to admit these days, esp. around this time of year. for those of us lucky enough to have had a happy (or happy-ish/decent) childhood, being a kid was pretty easy. i mean, sometimes it felt kinda heavy–after all, the world’s a pretty confusing place when you’re small (hell, it’s confusing enough when you’re grown)–but looking back on it, we had no bills to pay, no large unspoken issues to skirt around, nothing too uncomfortable aside from a tummy ache here and there and uncooperative velcro on our sneakers (hey, i am a child of the 80s after all). and while we couldn’t recognize it back then, we could just…be. you know?

in the summer, the shout of a child or the sound of a pool splash whooshes me back (they say it’s our sense of smell more than any of our other senses that bring memories back to life but to me it’s sounds) to piping hot and buttery grilled cheese sandwiches at the community pool, to french fries and red swedish fish and dunking under ice cold water and not feeling embarrassed to be in a swimsuit. when thanksgiving rolls around, the toot of a train horn sucks me back into an amtrak cafe car with a cup of coffee in front of me, a newspaper i wasn’t paying attention to laid out on the table with scenery whooshing by me at 90 mph, reflecting about how much i’d grown in college, all my classes, my assignments, the new friends i had made. not childhood exactly, but definitely still adolescence.

so as i board the plane to pittsburgh, PA (“pee-ay“) tomorrow night, my hope is that i can literally and figuratively rise above all the bad feelings our wedding brought to the surface. i hope my family can somehow patch up our collective wounds. it takes time, i know that. i just wish it hadn’t cast a dark shadow on what should have been the best day of my life.

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One response to “what is it about the holidays…

  1. during holidays, I think I was so absorbed in my my own life, I didn’t see anything that was going on around me. I think my family has just as much drama now as it did then, I just wasn’t aware. holidays including my family doesn’t seem like much fun now. that’s sad…

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