gift horses

23 December, 2008

play of lights

At this time of year, I dread the oncoming.  Sometime between the tinsel and shopping sprees, the mugs of warm coffee, sleeping past morning sweating under afghans and heavy blankets, I realize the advent calendar has more windows opened than closed- the oncoming is almost here and with it the dread, the self-pity, the petty, the sad, the ugly, and I miss the sun and warm breezes though honestly I can’t remember how it feels to be warm as I dry my hair with the metallic coils of heaters and humidifiers and foreign pallid tomatoes

-I came home to my beloved houseplants, dead.   Frozen.  I’ve had them for over 10 years now, one of them for 17, and she fucking killed them in 1 week-

I miss her mother so much this time of year.  I relive every Christmas- the one I missed, how her mother told me no, don’t go, that I’d regret it- how I left anyway.  I remember the next- that last horrible horrible mind scarring throat paralyzing Christmas- the farther past, the foggy, the anticipation- the mornings and her flannel nightgown and the oranges in the heel of the stockings she had made, before, when she was healthy- and that glittering tree and and how happy she was the night before (though she pretended stress as she wrapped and wrapped and drank champagne). 

Did I ever tell you Christmas Eve was her birthday?  Mine is only a week later, on New Year’s Eve… It makes me miss her all the more- it makes me hate him- oh how I hate him- and then- as quickly as I fill with rage it drains, clotting in a greasy pool of pity and distaste, like when you saw the rope of snot hanging from a sick mans lips and you couldn’t help but gag-  I hate myself this time of year.   I hate him, that icky man whose presents were inappropriate and stolen from his work place- how he’d go out of his way to make me miserable on special days. I can’t remember any specifics.   Or won’t.

I try to convince myself it’s just a birthday; it doesn’t matter.  I’ll never have to go to school on my birthday.  More people are conceived on my birthday than on any other day of the year.  There’s always champagne.  There’s always a kiss right at the end.  but… it’s always so goddamn cold.  And expensive.  And sold-out.  Every year in my memory I’ve gotten ‘combination’ presents that piss me off and at the same time make me feel petty.  Really, who looks a gift horse in the mouth, besides me?  But like I wrote, I hate myself this time of year.

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3 Responses to “gift horses”

  1. Rua Says:

    I can empathize on the birthday part. My birthday is the day after Christmas and is often forgotten completely by friends, family, etc. I’ve always especially hated when people would give me birthday presents wrapped in Christmas paper. It made me want to do the same thing in return, even if their birthday was in the summer.

  2. smoothpebble Says:

    I can’t even imagine Lea how this time of year must hurt. I’m so sorry without really knowing what to say – other than to wrap you in a hug and just be silent.


  3. when i was a kid, i love to receive an assortment of birthday presents like teddy bears and mechanical toys :”-


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