Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Holiday Hump Day

One of the best things about my birthday is that it falls almost exactly between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  It's actually exactly two weeks before Christmas (don't bother doing the math--it's the 11th.) which makes it the perfect Holiday Hump Day.  Usually everyone is ready to take a much needed break.  No shopping.  No wrapping.  No baking (unless it's cake for me!). 

And we did it up right this year.  Pat (of the tomatoes) hosted a perfect gathering.  There were family, friends, friends with families with them, friends who didn't know they had me in common, old friends, new friends and really, everyone in between.  Some friends didn't have the luxury of escaping the holidays but that just means I have a reason to get together with them soon.

And we ate.  Chicken three ways, chips, dips, cheese, crackers, treats, kasha varnishkas (I have no idea how to spell that), roasted cauliflower, stuffed mushrooms, carrot cake cupcakes--need I go on?  We drank wine and soda and water and Coquito which may be my new favorite thing. 

And even though I said no gifts, there were some shiny little things for me to play with when I got home.

Last year, I had a similar gathering but the intention of it was really different.  Pat and I both needed a party so we threw one.  My birthday just happened to be at the right time.  And I think that party really launched something for me.  I realized that I am surrounded by amazing people who love me very much.  And that made me realize that I had wasted so much time being unhappy.  Look what I had!!  Right here in front of me all this time!!  And I spent the past year embracing it.  (I know I've rambled on about this before but it really is quite a stunning difference in my life.  Indulge me.)

Yes, I took some risks.  I've taken risks before and sometimes they work out and sometimes they turn around and bite you on the ass.   But it's worth it.  I finally remembered that ass bites heal. 

Yes, I still have a boat load of baggage.  But really, who doesn't?  And on the rare occasion that my baggage sneaks up on me, I have someone who holds my hand when I'm acting like a raging lunatic sensitive soul and soothes me.

I remember thinking "I can do whatever the hell I want."  And I really wish that my inner voice had said to me "Yeah, and how's that workin' out for you?"  I think it was the convergence of many, many things that led up to that birthday party in 2010 that finally made me answer that question.

So was it a perfect year?  No, of course not.  There's no such thing.  But did I live it fully and with an open mind and heart?  I think so.  At least I tried to.  And maybe the trying is the part that counts. 

I've knit a lot less because I actually have other things to do now.  I have made new friends who I really, really like.  I still knit a lot but I no longer have the obsessive need that I had to accomplish something because I'm accomplishing other things. 

I know you're dying to know what the best birthday gift I got was.  I was reading the Yarn Harlot yesterday and she had it up as the gift of the day for knitters.  On the morning of my birthday I woke up really, really early--like 4 o'clock early.  After laying in bed for about 20 minutes trying to convince myself that I was not, actually, bright eyed and bushy tailed, I got up and snuggled up on the couch with tv, a cat and my knitting.  Around 5 o'clock, Brian wandered out, half asleep and bleary and said "I didn't know where you went."  So I told him I would come back to bed and read while he slept.  He looked at me and said "No, I'll be okay.  You deserve some nice, quite knitting time" and he wandered back to bed. 


Diane said...

Would that some day you could teach me how to take more risks---for now, any "Crib Notes??

Diane said...

Would that some day you could teach me how to take more risks---for now, any "Crib Notes??