I’m currently lying in bed at a Hyatt hotel in Cabo San Lucas reflecting on not just this year but this particular day through the years. Also, Nick Jonas is performing on MTV right now. The real St. Nick.
Let’s rewind way back. Back to when I still believed in Santa Claus. I had written him a letter asking to meet my dad. See, he wasn’t in the picture as often as I’d have liked but that wasn’t my call to make. Regardless, there he was on Christmas Eve just before we were about to head out for the midnight service at church standing beside the dining room table.
‘That’s your dad, puss, go say hi’, mom said as I shyly hid behind her leg.
It didn’t take much for me to be stuck to him like stink on shit but within weeks, he was gone again.
Fast forward about 22 years later, 50 days after my mom died, Christmas Eve. My step-dad receives a provocative text from my ‘auntie’ (see: my mom’s best friend) to meet up. I’m not one to dictate the timeline on how long a husband should grieve his dead wife or when to move on but 50 days was a little soon for me.
Before you say, ‘Now, Rachel…’ let me say this: that text has changed my life! It changed my life because this woman was my family before my step-dad was. She’s the one that always suggested I marry a rich man or at the very least make sure he’s got money. She was my confidante. She was my mom’s best fucking friend! Shame on me if I think she took advantage of a grieving man. Shame on me for thinking she is practicing what she always preached to me. Shame on me for being angry at her for taking my step-dad from me because let me tell you this, since he’s been with her, I hear from him less and less. And, more and more, I feel like another dad has left me.
So here we are, present day Christmas Eve. I’ve spent my day with toes and ass in the sand working on a sun tan and thinking so much I’ve put myself in a mood. Not necessarily a bad one but I’m certainly in my feelings. (Hence the post.)
I’m pissed off. I’m in denial. I’m grateful. I’m lonely. I’m neutral.
I guess when I type it out, there’s no wonder I have commitment issues. But it goes deeper than that. I fear commitment because I fear losing yet another person I love so deeply. Better to have loved and lost, my ass. It’s like trying to connect magnets on the opposite sides, when it feels like an invisible marble is preventing the sides from being attached. I want to be in love and celebrate 22 and more consecutive Christmases with someone but I’m fucked. For me, the fear of losing is greater than the desire to be in love.
So, I’ll treat myself to whatever the hell I want this Christmas. I’ll enjoy pictures of my friend’s holiday festivities on Instagram from my beach towel in Mexico. I’ll call both dads and tell them I love them.
Merry Christmas to all. And to all a good night.