It is little secret that the months of November, December, January and February are my least favorite part of the year. When I lived up north, that meant perpetual cold and less sunlight. And while I am a person of darkness who revels in it, I do not enjoy the cold that goes alongside it in the long winter months.
Really though, the above is not the reason I greatly dislike this time of year. It has to do with the events that take place during those months. And one will notice that each of them have a similar feel and theme to them. All of the holidays: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, New Years, and Valentines Day all deal with either family or romantic occasions.
My family relationship is complex. I love my parents and siblings from the bottom of my heart, no denying that. But, each of us has our own lives. And my goals can get into conflict with each of their own. For this reason, I tend to control my visits with each of them, my brother Brent being the exception. These controlled visits ensure that each experience is maximum in impact and minimizes any negative experiences that may occur.
As for the romantic holidays, it is a double edged sword. On one hand, I pride myself on my well… pride. “Yes dear” is not part of my vocabulary. If a person thinks they are right, they better fucking be right. This does not play well into dating of course. Nor does it help that with me being as stubborn as I am that I live in a Jewish society. A world that aggressively pushing dating and marriage when combined with a man like me that is quite frankly not marketable is quite a conundrum.
But really my reason for hating this time of year goes much deeper than superficial problems. Before I went to college, family time had already become an incredibly awkward endeavor, and although it too a while for me to find the root cause, I realized in hindsight after my parents began the process of divorce, that I had felt the negative energy in the room long before. This mean that for many years I had dreaded family holidays, which meant surprise surprise, all the ones listed above.
So as college came around, I decided to avoid my family during these holidays to avoid the negative repressed memories. This of course created another problem. One that I call “Harry Potter Syndrome” I might not go home for the holidays to spend it with my family, but basically everyone else I know does. This leaves me alone to brood and see the in anger. Sometimes for entire months at a time since school is not open to distract me from my woes.
For many years, the winter served as a long 4 month dark time where I would contemplate suicide from the first day to the last. Loneliness and self doubt would gnaw at me, while I made the mistake of spending time on Facebook and becoming jealous of the people who had a less toxic family situation, which would further feed into my self loathing. It became a deadly cycle. To make matters worse, basically the entire United States of America shuts down during the already mentioned holidays meaning that I had basically nothing to do to keep my mind out of depression state. A spiral into a deep darkness.
I came to a breaking point a few years ago when I published my first novel. That was the action that gave my life meaning. I decided that I would move heaven and hell itself, even spit in G-ds eyes if it would ensure that I can complete my work. So as a result, I have not had a suicidal thought in a little more than three years which is truly remarkable. However, this does not mean that the pain goes away.
Even now, as I write this post, I am alone in my home and have no plans to spend it with anyone. I do not want to leave the house because hearing Christmas music has become a Post Traumatic Stress Trigger for me and can drive me into a manic rage just by hearing it. Although since everything is closed on Christmas, its pointless to leave anyway.
I’ll make it through this year just like I have all the others, by writing. And let me tell you, based on how 2016 turned out, the hell that will be 2017, is gonna need it.