Christmas Day Years Ago, Last Year and Today

Fifteen years ago, after being stuck in a snow storm at Chicago O’ Hare for eight hours in the plane on the ground, the plane took off for the last leg of the journey to where my friend lived with her husband.  I felt surprisingly content waiting on that plane.  Somehow I knew that special times lay ahead and I needed to be patient.  The plane finally landed after midnight.  They had given the plane special permission to land late since it was the holidays.  It was Christmas Eve morning when we finally landed.  There were a lot of tired passengers and people who had been waiting for the flight, singing Christmas carols and trying to remain in good holiday cheer while waiting for their loved ones.  Upon landing, my friend gave me a package to open.  It was a cow pacifier.  How odd.  I had been partial to cows, but a pacifier?  I was tired and it took me a while to figure it out – she was going to have a baby!  She was newly pregnant and not due until July.  I was so happy for her and so excited to be a part of her sharing her good news in person.

On Christmas morning she and her husband and I headed down state to have dinner at her sister’s apartment.  Her brother from New York was there already and gave me a big hug when I got there.  It felt really good.  I had been close to his family growing up and this was comfortable.  After dinner, he and I washed dishes together.  He embarrassed me later by wanting to rub my feet.  His mother was there for heaven’s sake!  For the next day or so he and I were conveniently assigned to ride around alone together to all family activities in his brother’s two seat truck.  His mother let me drive her car, which was apparently unheard of, to return him to his sister’s apartment where he was staying.  I had received the stamp of approval from his family.  He and I bonded over these next couple of days.  There was clearly something between us that had not been fully explored for many years.  Little glitch – he lived in New York and I in LA.

I returned to my friend’s house giddy with love and was to fly back home the next day.  He did not call for a couple days and I was thinking he had forgotten about me, but later he said he was giving me time to spend with his sister without distraction. To me it was more distracting that he didn’t call after the time we had spent together.

That all seems like a fairy tale that took place so long ago.  It was a year ago today at Christmas that he told me he was not committed to our relationship any longer.  It has been over a year since he has told me he loved me.  Our current relationship started on Christmas Day so many years ago and it seemed that it was ending on Christmas Day last year.  Today our family is still together.  Some days are better than others.  So much has happened.  There are days that I am convinced that we are living in the same house only to spare us all the pain of separating our family.  There are other days that I feel there is more between us, but it is awkward and unsettled.

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