I’ve always had this thought that Christmas was about family and friends. It’s about giving and not expecting anything in return. It’s about, as corny as this may sound, love. I just got to thinking, what sort of love do I still have today? I’ve been living in a very closed world of me, myself, and I and a bit of my family. I’ve tried to incorporate friendship as best I could. Yet, to be honest, I haven’t felt very close to my friends. The friendship I have with my siblings, it’s on rocky bridges. Sometimes, it’s the best thing to have and other times, it sucks me into the darkness I had to pull myself out of last year—and still am. You’d think, well, that’s what other friendships are there for. They’re friends you’ve chosen. I don’t know. Obviously, nothing will ever compare to the dynamics between my siblings and mine. I don’t expect it to be as complex and as rewarding. I did think it would be close to it. Maybe they think it is. I don’t know how they truly feel about it. For me, it’s exhausting. It’s exhausting trying to compromise with them or just being my normal opinionated self. It’s about fearing I won’t be accepted and also hating exposing a part of me I don’t want to expose. It’s tiring trying to open up, then that same door being closed again only for me to start over. It’s seriously a lot like rereading the same book a million times and still not understanding even a tiny bit of the book. I’m the book. I think. Or it’s friendship. I’m not entirely sure. This annual Christmas thing that I have with friends, it’s frustrating because they tell you it’s something they want, but I don’t see the effort. I know I have a lot of time in my hands in comparison to them, that’s not the point. You have time to watch your favorite show? A few seconds to give input isn’t too much to ask. My dad says, friendships is like growing a plant. It takes time, patience, and a lot of care. Who’s the plant? Is it the other person? Me? Friendship itself? If I’m the only one who gives the time to water the plant, brings it outside for some sun, and waits… am I not also the only one giving a lot of care? I’m not allowed to forget about it. I’ll have to bring it inside. Then the cycle begins again. Even when I try to remind them, it’s like I’m talking to myself which is usually the case. I’m talking to myself in all relationships I have. Am I my only family and friend? Do I not count? So, what’s Christmas this year? It’s just an illusion. It’s just me pretending I’m celebrating when really, I’m just trying to get through it. Here’s to a merry Christmas.