Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Lisa the wiener dog (RIP!) and Dad, Thanksgiving weekend 2006

I say often that I have limited memory for pain. As we ascended to Dead Woman's Pass on the second day of the Inca Trail hike (a five hour uphill climb), the altitude and fatigue at the end had me pausing every two minutes to catch my breath. Sometimes I even had to sit down. (Meanwhile, my out-of-shape asthmatic husband was hopping up the path like a damn mountain goat, but that's a different story.) We finally reached the cloud-fogged pass and I looked back over my shoulder, down the dark slope and thought, "Cake".

So it also is with holidays. While I know in my brain-parts that they are a trigger for my anxiety and depression, I still look forward to them like an amnesiac because I do desperately love my family (as well as, to a lesser but not unimportant degree, time off work). We are flawed, the whole lot of us. We get in each other's way and we wear each other the hell out. I cried on the drive home Friday night, my pinched face and tears obscuring the slick roads and racing headlights. I nearly had to pull over.

When we got back to Columbus, I began to unpack our things and found the leftovers my mom had sealed up for us. The six pack of Magic Hat I'd brought home to share had dwindled down to a single beer, and my dad had re-upped it with a hand-picked sampler from my parents' supply. The sort of quiet, simple things you do for your people without a second thought.

Guess who can't wait for Christmas? (I'm being serious.)


  1. Were you crying because your family was driving you crazy or because you were leaving? Although I love my family, and even like them most of them time, they almost killed me this Thanksgiving! Oh the holidays, so much happiness and so much crap all rolled into one short month!

  2. Oh, man.

    I know this feeling. They suck you in and push you away, and you always just keep hoping.