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Has the upcoming holiday season ever felt so weird? 

Christmas 2019 was the most forced holiday season of my life. With a lump in my throat the whole time, I just wanted to curl up into a ball and sleep until winter was over. We buried my grandmother on December 23 and the general mood was not in the least bit festive.

There were Christmas Carolers singing Feliz Navidad on her hospital floor the day she died.

Helen used to sing that song with a gin tonic in her hand and an arm full of glittery bracelets. Sitting at her dining room table, celebrating the night away with the ones she loved.

When COVID arrived, the threat of losing someone else turned me into a giant anxious mess.

My grandma was gone, and I became the vessel for cautionary statements.

Her usual, “Be careful” or “Watch your purse” was replaced by repetitive pandemic themed warnings coming out of my mouth.

Wear a mask.

Don’t go to indoor public spaces unnecessarily.

Wear a mask. 

Are you taking your Vitamin D?

I have fucking hated being a Worrywart.

The thing is, the holidays are not about the holidays this year. 

It’s about staying safe.

So whatever tradition you can’t uphold, know that letting it go for a year is the right thing to do.

Trust me, life goes on even if you don’t have a great Christmas.

Here is a sentence to sum it up perfectly:

“We isolate now so when we gather again no one is missing.”

— Unknown

The empty chair of a loved one who is gone forever, makes it really hard to celebrate anything.