Just a quick note to wish you all a lovely and fantabulous holiday season… and to give you a little something to warm your chestnuts a bit early. 😉
Life can be hard at times for pretty much everyone, though it can be harder for some than others.
However I sometimes wonder if I’m subconsciously making my life harder than it really needs to be. That I let my emotions and negative thoughts take over my active behaviours, which sometimes leads me to pushing people away when I don’t mean to.
I’ve been thinking about this quite a bit over the past few days as I spend the holidays alone. A couple of close friends stayed in town this year as well, but instead of us getting together like I tried to suggest, they each chose to spend the day on their own.
This was not a great feeling, and although I tried not to, I took it as a personal affront that they (seemingly) couldn’t be bothered to just spend the day together. Christmas is a time to spend with loved ones, be it family or friends, and I actually felt abandoned.
It wasn’t about doing some massive Christmas dinner or whatever, but more about having some friendly company. Or at least it was for me.
What I found though, as I spent the past two days completely alone, that my emotions were getting the better of me. I was sad and angry at the same time, and anyone who sent me a cheery Christmas greeting got a response full of sadness and negativity.
I couldn’t help it. All I could focus on over the past couple days was how everyone else was out there enjoying their loved ones while I sat at home alone.
One person messaged me that I should have told them I was going to be alone at Christmas.. to which I replied that if they’d wanted me at theirs for Christmas, then they should have invited me. That I shouldn’t have to broadcast to the world that I’m alone at Christmas so I could end up with a pity invite.
Maybe that was the wrong response and reaction to their message, but it was a knee-jerk answer and the anger came out. Of course this was the same person who said they were home alone as well.. with their husband. That’s not being alone if you ask me.
Of course it didn’t help things whenever I’d log onto Facebook and saw all the happy families and groups of friends having fun with each other. After awhile I just had to close the site, and couldn’t even bring myself to reply to messages from people I care about.
In the end, I had a marathon viewing of RuPaul’s Drag Race on Netflix over the past several days (finished series 3 lol), as that was the most un-Christmasy thing I could think of to watch. Plus I was hoping it would cheer me up somewhat.
Anyway, now there’s less than a week left of 2014 and I need to find a way to turn this frown upside down. The last thing I want to do is start a new year in such a pissed off mood.
And I most definitely don’t want to spend NYE all alone.. again (had a bad flu last year, so couldn’t go out). That was probably just as bad a feeling, if not worse.
So here’s hoping I can get myself out of this funk.. If not, maybe it’s time to speak to the doctor again for some help. 😦
I’m doing my best to try to maintain a more positive, up beat attitude as a way to fight the normal negative thoughts that pop into my head uninvited.
And I think I was doing alright with that… Until this potentially soul-crushing festive period crept up on me – Christmas.
I think it really started to hit me end of last, or perhaps on the weekend, that once again I’ve got nothing planned for the ‘special’ day. I’d hoped to spend it with one of two friends (or both), but they’ve both decided to just have a quiet day at home alone.
Not that it matters anyway, as I wouldn’t have been able to have either/both of them over to mine as my landlord is having people over. So that would mean no opportunity to use the kitchen or space to hang out other than in my bedroom.
My landlord has said I’m welcome to join him and his friends tomorrow, but I’m not sure how much I’d enjoy spending Christmas with strangers.
And speaking of practical strangers, I did get a sort-of invite from a guy I’ve been chatting to for a couple weeks who lives nearby to join him and his flatmate for Christmas. But again, it be spending it with someone I barely know so dunno how well we’d get along.
Besides, who wants the first time meeting someone new you’ve been flirting with online to be on Christmas Day??
I would just hole myself up in my bedroom for the day, but that would just be shit as I’d be able to hear them in the lounge. Plus I won’t have time to pick up any food for myself (simple stuff since I probably wouldn’t get much of a chance to cook) as most shops are closing early in my area and I don’t know if I’d make it before they closed.
*Sigh* I don’t know. I kind of wished I’d planned something, like arranged a cheap trip out of town or something. Not that I could really afford that..
I do wish I could have afforded to fly home for the holidays this year. It’s been 3 years since the last time I went home, so it be great to see them. Especially after my mother recent went through heart surgery a little while back.
But it’s too expensive and I wouldn’t have been able to get the time off work, so no point wishing for something that couldn’t have happened anyway.
I don’t know. I’m just feeling a bit meh about the holidays, especially tonight. I’d agreed to meet with a mate after work for a bite and maybe a drink. Only to find out on my way to his work (my work let out early, shockingly) that he’d been asked to stay at work until 8:30pm.
So instead of waiting around an hour or so, it be well over 3 hours waiting. I’m not sure I want to do that or just go home. (I’m not blaming him, it just sucks cause I had no other plans..)
Or maybe I should just head to some pub and get pissed by myself. Not exactly a fun idea either… Getting pissed, yes. By myself, not so much.
I just feel like I’m at a loose end for the holidays with nowhere to turn and nobody to spend it with. Again.
Here’s hoping all your Christmases turn out better than mine is looking at the moment. xx
Now here’s a bit of different type of holiday cheer … courtesy of a sexy Christmas video from underwear designer Andrew Christian.
Andrew Christian is an American men’s underwear, swimwear, and sportswear manufacturer founded by designer Andrew Christian. The brand is best known for its underwear, which include street, sport and fashion lines, available in various styles. (Source: Wikipedia)
Of course they are also now known for their advertising videos, per the one below, and for their sexy models. As well as the fact that the company heavily targets the gay community, with the brand operating gay-themed websites.
I was sent this video from a mate yesterday as a ‘Christmas’ present… was definitely a nice way to spread a little extra sexy holiday cheer. There’s definitely a bit of eye-candy for pretty much anyone in this video.
Now this is an article that I wish I had found way before today.. and had the forethought (or money) to do the last one on the list. Maybe next year. 😉
Admittedly I could have done more of points 1 or 2.. but after winning an iPad mini at work and my housemate giving me a nice big bottle of Jack Daniels I figured I had enough gifts for myself. And screw the decorations, it’s enough that the radio station I’m listening to keeps playing the odd Xmas song. That’s enough, right? lol
Anyway, however you’ve been spending today, I hope you’ve enjoyed yourselves and are surrounded by love, either in person or virtual (I’ll be on Skype with the family a bit later..).
Maybe the idea of spending another Christmas Day watching your family fight is too much to bear, perhaps you’re a long way from home, perhaps you just want the day all to yourself, whatever the reason Christmas Day alone can be a marvellous thing.
My first Christmas alone was about nine years ago, it was my first year at university, I was staying in halls of residence, working locally and only had Christmas Day off. I was totally unprepared and ended up eating three Christmas dinners due to lack of planning and inability to say no to people who felt sorry for me. Worst Christmas ever. Four years ago however was my second solo Christmas, I was totally prepared and it is still one of my all time favourite Christmas days ever. You just need to follow some simple rules:
1. Embrace Christmas
Pretending it’s not Christmas will make you feel pretty lousy, get that tree up, totally go over-festive with decorations all over your house and mull the hell out of anything alcoholic, which leads us on to number two…
2. Spoil yourself
Just buying food and drink for yourself massively reduces the cost of Christmas. Splash out on a really nice bit of beef, some proper champagne as opposed to Cava, all the extra super duper special food, go to town, buy yourself a really nice bottle of wine/single malt/fancy cheese. Buy yourself a present or twelve, nice new books, DVDs, clothes and most importantly wrap them up, it’s still ace to see presents under the tree and open them over your champagne breakfast.
Fill your day with loads of great movies, the remote is ALL YOURS, it’s a day of total indulgence, get dressed up, stay in your pyjamas or don that horrific festive jumper as you watch Elf for the 8th time this month.
As I said earlier this is NO TIME TO SKIMP ON THE GOOD STUFF, you don’t have to worry about someone drinking your champagne and giving you a gift of nasty mulled wine in exchange so spend a bit extra on something rather special. Supermarkets have offers on pretty much all their premium spirits so buy yourself something nice. If however, you are drinking to drown your sorrows rather than sheer enjoyment then you should probably head to the pub and hang out with people instead.
5. Leave the country.
If the thought of spending Christmas alone at home still fills you with dread then don’t. There are plenty of last minute flights and holidays around online, go skiing or go lie on a beach and reappear in 2014, actually that sounds like a mighty fine idea to me.
Being alone at Christmas can be absolutely depressing .. and I’m doing my best not to let it get to me.
Initially I was quite fine with spending today alone, but now that it’s actually here all I can think of is how alone I feel today. I’m sure I probably could have found someone to spend it with or somewhere to be today, but in the end I didn’t really have much of a desire to do so.
And I’m sure I’m not the only person out there who’s spending today alone..
Yes, there are several dear friends I would have loved to have spent today with (since my family is back in Canada, and I couldn’t afford to go home this year.. again), but they already had other plans with their families or were traveling to see their families. In fact, I didn’t even tell some of those friends who I knew were spending the day in the London/UK with their friends or families .. which of course prompted several messages of ‘Why didn’t you say anything?’ or ‘You could have come here’.
The truth is, the last thing I’d want to do is to intrude on someone’s time with their loved ones. Christmas is a special time for a lot of people, and I only think it would make things somewhat awkward to have some stranger sitting at their table. Especially someone like me who’s never been a big fan of the day itself.
Or maybe I’m just over-thinking it or projecting my thoughts on it. Maybe I’m not understanding the whole ‘more the merrier’ attitude some people have around Christmas.
Or maybe I’m being selfish this year as I only wanted to do what I wanted to do, and not be subject to someone else’s timetable or ideas of how to spend Christmas.
The interesting thing is I know of many people in town who have gotten together for a ‘strays’ Christmas (can see it all over Facebook last night and this morning), but at no point did any of them suggest I join them. And I didn’t ask to be included either..
The way I look at it is if these mates (won’t call them friends really since I never hear from them during the rest of the year either..) wanted me to be with them at Christmas, then they would have invited me. Or at least I would hope they would have..
I think the other reason why I didn’t go out of my way to find somewhere to be today is how (in the UK) you’re basically stuck at that person’s house from Christmas Eve until Boxing Day because there’s absolutely no transport on Christmas Day itself, unless you’ve been lucky (and had the forethought) to book a taxi.
There was one friend I’d talked to about spending Christmas together awhile back as they couldn’t get the time off to go abroad to spend it with their family as they usually did. We said we’d discuss it closer to Christmas and arrange something.. but when I brought it up a week or two ago, they had already made other plans… and didn’t seem to recall that we’d previously talked about spending the day together.
And I did have an invite to spent today with a mate and his partner, as they weren’t traveling home to see the partner’s family as they usually did. The thing is, this ‘mate’ is a fuck-buddy, and although his partner knows we play (they’re open), I just felt that would have been too uncomfortable.. for me.
So instead I decided to just stay home .. And try to treat today just like any other day.
Easier said than done really.. especially with all those damn cheery Facebook status updates and pictures of people enjoying their loved ones.
If only I could stop looking .. and stop wishing I was there with them.
*Sigh* Maybe next year..
I’m not knocking anyone who loves this time of year.. in fact several of my close friends absolutely LOVE Christmas, and I think it’s great they get so excited about it, regardless of how old they are or how they spend it. I am genuinely happy for them when I hear how they’ve spent the day with family or friends.
Me, I’m just a bit more ‘meh’ about it all.
I think a lot of it has to do with how I’ve spend many a Christmas alone or working, and I think in the past 15 years I’ve probably only spent about 3 or 4 of them with my family. It was never an easy thing to be able to go home for the holiday period, partly because of finances but also about having the time off.
This year I do have the week between Christmas and New Year’s off work, but I haven’t gotten anything planned to be honest. In fact, I think I’m just going to enjoy the day to myself, relax, make myself a nice meal, and watch the Christmas specials on the telly (am mostly looking forward to the Christmas Day episodes of Doctor Who and Downton Abbey lol).
Would it be nice to have some company on Christmas Day? Sure it would, nobody likes to be alone on that day. But at the same time I don’t feel the need to spend it with people just so I’m not by myself that day. To me that would feel forced and not exactly special.. and I’ve done that more than enough times in the past to know it’s not how I’d like to spend the day so I’ve chosen to spend the day by myself to relax.
Of course it would be great if I could spend the day with my family, but now that I’m living in London it’s a bit hard since it’s so expensive to fly back to Canada at this time of year. Since I moved here in 2008 I’ve only been home for Christmas once back in 2011.
And after the year I’ve had, the last thing I could afford is a flight home.
It was terrific to see my family and spend time with them over the almost 2 weeks I spent there (minus the couple days I spent in Montreal over New Year’s). The older I get the more I wish I could see them more, but at the same time I need to live my life.
But I think what made that visit so special is how we kept it a secret that I was coming to visit, with only my dad and my younger sister knowing that I was coming (they were meeting me at the airport after all). I’ll never forget the look on my mum’s face when she saw me sitting in my sister’s living room as I wished her a ‘Merry Christmas’.. she was completely shocked and once she almost bowled me over to give me a hug, she didn’t let me go for ages.
It was so sweet that we could give her that surprise for Christmas, especially after she’d sent me a message on Facebook just that morning wishing I could be there with them. This year however will just be the usual chat on Skype once my parents get to my sister’s house.
Anyway, I guess the crux of it is I just don’t see the point getting worked up over that day.. I’m not religious so have never seen it as a religious holiday, and I don’t have any burning desire to spend loads of money on too much food or crap I don’t need. Hell, I rarely exchange gifts with anyone, mostly because I think if someone is truly that special to you why should you wait for that day to give them something special?
Yeah.. maybe I’m a bit of a Grinch. But I’m ok with that. 😉
Well well.. who’d have thunk it. About a week ago, ‘Ramblings of a Supposed Disease Free Mind’ turned 4 years old.
That’s right, it’s my blog’s anniversary. 🙂
When I initially started this blog, it was to give myself a creative outlet for my writing and to help keep those back home in touch with what’s going on in my life after I moved to London back in September 2008.
Like most things, my blog has gone through a many ups and downs over the years, including several breaks where I wasn’t posting as often and one time when something I posted on here almost got me fired. It has showcased happy times, periods of depression, losing jobs and even the loss of ‘friends’.
I’m not sure what the upcoming year will bring for my blog – or even for my personal life – but the hope is to get back to writing more often.
Well today is December 21st, 2012 .. and the supposed day of the Mayan predicted Apocalypse. People around the world were all freaked out that the world was going to end.. with some of them looking forward to it for whatever reasons.
According to this article here, which debunks 5 Mayan Apocalypse Myths, today wraps up a 400-year cycle called a b’ak’tun, the day of the winter solstice. Over the years, the Mayan Calendar has been misinterpreted by Westerners to predict the end of the world, when it was just a benchmark of the end of a full creationist cycle.
For anyone scratching their head wondering what any of that means, I haven’t a clue either.
Guess we just need to wait and see what the next cycle brings us .. and most likely, just get on with living our day to day lives.
That’s right, it’s that time of year again where most everyone goes a little bit crazy to create the perfect holiday season and spent way too much money. This time of year means different things to different people, regardless of their cultural upbringing.
For me, I find it’s a quite lonely time of year, as I tend to spend most of this season alone. I don’t have many close friends here in London, and the few I would love to spend this time with generally go home to spend it with their families.
I got a chance to go home for the holidays last year, spending the time around Christmas with my family back in Canada and New Years in Montreal. I definitely enjoyed it and wish I could see my family more often (last time I’d seen them had been 3 1/2 years prior when I moved to London).
It’s always great to spend the time with family, but it isn’t always possible financially. Especially this year since I haven’t been working since the end of August, and have spent most of the past couple months studying towards a certification in Project Management.
So instead of spending it with family or dear friends, I’m spending Christmas Day itself with the older couple I live with and their friends.. only because I had no other offers. It’s not exactly what I would have liked to be doing, but at least I’m not spending the day physically alone.
I know a lot of it is my own fault, as I haven’t exactly been a social butterfly the past few months while being off work .. especially since I’m doing my best to not spend much money so I can ensure I can pay the bills (I’m not broke, but I am being careful).
But at the same time, and I’ve found this before when I wasn’t working, I have found that some so-called friends stop wanting to hang out when things aren’t going that well. It’s like they only want to be around when things are good and happy.. which would mean they truly aren’t that good of a friend.
However don’t think I’m being all depressive, cause I’m not.. well not completely.
I’ve got New Years to look forward to, as I’m going to spend it with a dear friend (possibly more than a friend?) in Luxembourg. And I’m definitely looking forward to that time away from London and my flat.. and to distract me from job hunting and studying.
Fingers crossed things improve for me in 2013.
Ahhh… look at those innocent children in the picture. They live in a time and place where they have no worries in the world, and their biggest concern is how much time they will get to spend playing with their friends in the snow. It’s a world of spontaneity and naivety that we all wish we could go back to, where we don’t have to worry about money, bills, boyfriends, work and all the other things that can stress us out on a daily basis. The innocence in the picture’s world gets lost over time, time we all wish we could get back. Just remember one thing this Holiday season as you spend time with your friends and loved ones: We all make choices in life, and as hard as we try not to, we all make a choice how we are going to react to the things that happen on a daily basis. Choose to worry only about the things that can be taken care of in the immediate future, and then tackle the other things as they come up. That may sound like procrastination, but in fact its being a realist.
Have a happy and joyous holiday season.