The holidays bring out the strangest things in us. It’s a combination of so much that starts pushing our buttons or strikes a nerve we forgot was there.

The other day I was waiting in the car while my sister brought her new baby into a doctor’s office for a check up, and I was perfectly content. I’m in a happy stretch where life seems full of possibilities and I’m able to watch myself react differently to situations and people in a new way and it feels good. So, I was in that positive place and I changed the radio station and there was Christmas music on. I thought, that’s weird, don’t they start playing this until after Thanksgiving which is still ten days away? I embraced it. I was glad it was on because finally the weather in LA had cooled off and I was wearing a cozy sweater and it was starting to feel like the holidays. I put my feet up on the dashboard, huddled into my seat, put the butt warmer on, and enjoyed some Oh, Holy Night. Now, this is my kind of groove. I’ve never felt like a California girl even though I can’t deny that I am one. I’m not all that fond of summer, I’m more of a fall/winter person. I crave cloudy days where I can wear a scarf and boots, and tights with dresses, and always have a hot cup of something in my hand. Or perhaps even an invigorating kissing session by a fire… Anyway, my season had arrived and I was enjoying it. I was also having a great hair day which really helps my mood. But then three songs into my holiday orgasm something happened. Everything changed in an instant. I started feeling weird. I sat up. Put my feet down. I was starting to feel panicked. What is this negative shittyness that just washed over me? Why did O Come All Ye Faithful just give me the same reaction as if it were Mambo #5? And then I knew. It was… loneliness! Oh god! Okay, excuse me, but I’m not lonely! I looked around to make sure no one could see me going through all of these realizations so openly. Apparently no one cared, because no one even looked. Rude.

I realized that all of this holiday music, and the cozy weather, and white Christmas lights lining the streets, and my great hair day… it was making me want to share it with someone. I mean, I’m not dead inside, I get that it should be an obvious yearning in life, but not for me right now! I’ve been strutting around like a freshly laid frat guy lately. Every time someone asks me if I’m dating anyone I immediately get a look of moldy food on my face, “Oh, no no no no… no boyfriend… I’m in such a great place right now… no room for that… no interest… I’m dating ME right now and it’s going very well… In it for the long haul together…” The lady doth protest too much you might say? Well sure, in hindsight I see what you mean, but in the moment I meant every damn word. Of course I’ve been in love. More times than I’d like to admit. And with people I can’t even remember loving. But I did for sure. There were times when I felt like I was half of the perfect team, us against the world. Nothing could mean more than our understanding of each other. Other times, and more often times, it just felt like I was half a person. Split in half, living a lie. Worried about not being enough. Feeling unsatisfied. Analyzing things until I had killed what was left to pick apart. So, now having had distance from that, I’ve been saying something that I never understood people saying before; I just wanna have FUN. When I used to hear people say that I would be so confused. I’d think, “Oh that poor lost soul. Find some meaning! Connect with something! You’re an idiot! You have bad roots! (Can’t stand lazy blond’s with three inches of black at the top of their head)”

So, I had become one of the ones who just wants fun. Not looking for a relationship. Enjoys being alone. Doesn’t question everything. I like this person. I like myself more when I’m not in a relationship. I’m spontaneous, and productive, and ambitious, and social, and lighthearted, and interested in things. I don’t know why I lose all of that when I’m with someone. I’m so fascinated by the person I love, I have them on such a pedestal, that I forget to live my life. Now maybe I could get away with that behavior when I was eighteen, but honey I ain’t eighteen no more. It’s not cute. It’s awful and I’m aware of it, which is why I just simply took relationships off the table until I can function like a normal person. And hopefully when that happens I’ll still have eggs that can reproduce.

So, having this little burst of loneliness was kind of cramping my style. I didn’t have time for this. I go to sleep with a smile on my face. When I see a romantic comedy it just inspires me to write one, not be one. I’m a Beyonce song. So, what was I going to do? Well, I’m not proud of what I did. I texted a dude, obviously. I wanted to write him, “Christmas music made me lonely, hold me!”. But instead I wrote, “hey.. what’s up?” Now this is someone who I’ve been able to keep a casual relationship with. He’s nice, easy to be around, has a good sense of humor, doesn’t take himself too seriously, seems to be charmed by my less charming qualities, and he’s HOT. Things had gone so smoothly with the whole casual thing that everyone claims is impossible to maintain. Up until this point, it had been absolutely perfect. Great when we’re together and not a bad thought when we’re apart. But now the Christmas music had started playing. Threw a wrench in my game. Now I was craving companionship and I was reaching out to him for it. Big no-no. Well, he must have felt the uncharacteristic desperation because an hour passed and he didn’t respond. Then two hours.. then three.. well you get the idea. It wasn’t good. It only magnified my current state.

I went out for a drink with a girlfriend. I tried to shake it off, but if I’m being honest I was checking my phone every thirty seconds. And then, the unthinkable happened. Who did I see across the room? Yep. It was him. Mr. No Texty Backey. The nerve. I took it personally. But why? On any other night this would be no big deal. We’re friends. I could just give him a hard time for not responding and laugh about it. He’s not my boyfriend. He’s been nothing but completely respectful and wonderful up to this point. But tonight felt different. He saw me. He approached us. He seemed happy enough to run into me. I’m sure a little embarrassed about not writing me back. He told me he was leaving on an early flight out of town the next morning. I wanted to whisper to him, “just come and cuddle with me while we watch bad reality TV.” But I acted cool. I let him go. No need to ruin what we have going. He didn’t want to hear me say, “Lets ditch this place and go spoon.” Not his fault I was being a crazy person. He called it an early night and left.

We spent the rest of the night flirting with boring guys who I didn’t feel like giving honest answers to about anything. I just made things up. Fake name, fake job.. I wasn’t going to let this thing spiral into me going home with some random idiot. One guy I talked to for too long asked me for my number and I looked at him and said, “You look much younger than me.” He said, “So what?” So I said, “You look like you surf.” He said, “Yep, everyday.” I said, “I don’t like surfers.” He said, “So what?” I said, “We’re not gonna have anything in common.” He said, “Just give me your number.” He wore me down! I felt guilty for being so harsh that I just gave him my damn number even though I knew we’d never have a future.

It’s so weird interacting in bars. Guys have this rapacious energy like if every minute you interact with them isn’t going to lead to sex, you are simply distracting them from their god given path. And the girls can’t hold a conversation without looking over your shoulder to see if anyone is looking at them, or if her future husband is perhaps looking FOR her somewhere in the room. They’re making sure their arm looks skinny and their face doesn’t show how desperate they feel. It’s a mess.

The night turned out okay though. I had some good laughs with my girlfriend, got a couple glasses of wine in me, and when we walked out it was raining. That felt good. Standing at valet waiting for the car in the rain, with that Hispanic woman trying to get the guy standing next to me to buy me roses even though we don’t know each other. Rude that he didn’t get them for me.

By the next morning I had kicked the nagging loneliness. It was clearly temporary insanity. I figured I needed to come up with some quick fixes since I was looking at a few more weeks of this holiday stuff. But you know what? No. I love this time of year, whether it messes with my head or not. It just makes you reflect and it’s up to you whether you want to reflect in a productive way or a destructive way. Its all part of life. Sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down. Sometimes you want a long hug, and other times you turn your phone off and spend your time the way you want to, GUILT FREE. I can accept the hills and valleys. You have to ride out those low’s because they usually make sense the next day. Before my little hiccup I was starting to think that I just didn’t care anymore. I was dead inside. That I was just getting a little too comfy being on my own and enjoying it a little too much. So reality smacked me in the face and said, “Wake up bitch! You want love, and you’ll get it when you know what the hell to do with it!”
Word.

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