The holidays are upon us, which I know can mean great depression or at least a general darkness to some. And Thanksgiving is certainly the most retarded of holidays—when we slaughter large birds and remember that many years ago European white men came and stole this country and destroyed the spirit of its rightful owners—owners who I am distantly related to on my mother’s French Canadian side. These original tenants were so ravaged by what happened to them a couple of centuries ago that during my childhood in the North of Michigan the word “Indian” was completely synonymous with “alcoholic”.
It wasn’t until I neared closer to adulthood that I realized these dirty, long-haired creeps with beer cans in their hands veering and passing out in the sand of our local beach were actually the living result of damage done to their ancestors many years ago. And now most of them make a pretty decent living running casinos on protected Native American land. Nearby Pshawbe Town, once dubbed Shabby Town by the locals, is now pumping cash through gambling—drawing all sorts of Michigan white man to the tables. So there you go, it was taken and now it’s being handed back over the craps table. Not exactly the happy ending one might hope for, but it’s better than cans of shitty beer on the beach.
Anyway, today I am cooking a tofurkey and many other sundries for my mostly-vegan boyfriend. Which is not to imply that I never eat turkey, but I do like the idea of being one less person participating in the “turkey holocaust”, as my good friend Morgan phrased it last night. I am incredibly grateful for the day off from work and took the opportunity to get drunk last night with people like Morgan and my long-term band mate Donna, who has been a part of my life so long that she is really my sister at this point. This morning I have a low-grade hangover and I took the opportunity to lie on the couch in my slip, eating chips and guacamole and surrounded by sleeping animals while watching The Chronicles of Narnia. The series of books it was drawn from were very special to me as a kid, I read them repeatedly and spent a lot of time dreaming of living in that fantasy world, so I have to admit that I pretty much cried through the whole movie even though much of it probably didn’t warrant the emotion poured into its viewing. I am still emotional, which is most likely the reason I feel inspired to put down a holiday blog.
I have had some really shit holiday seasons in the past. I’ve had countless Thanksgivings stuck pouring drinks in crappy dive bars, chain-smoking in frustration while waiting on needy alcoholics and wondering how I managed to land in such a bleak position. I had one holiday season where I was so broke and depressed that I started sobbing in the middle of Bendels. The beauty and abundance around me seemed so incredibly far out of my reach at that moment that I felt nothing but despair upon viewing it. I’ve had coked up Christmas Eves where thin sunlight rose and shone through dingy blinds upon my tweaked out self-loathing and the equally depressed losers surrounding me. If you have never experienced that particular party, let me tell you there is absolutely nothing more depressing in the world than coming down on Christmas.
But that is all far past me at this point in my life and it only serves to make me so incredibly grateful for the life I live today. I have recently come to the conclusion that no matter how I try to prove my own sanity to myself and to the people around me, I will always remain a bit crazy. And I’m finally feeling okay with that, at least at this moment. I have so much gratitude for my life right now—my family, my friends, my job, my apartment, my pets, my stuff, my day off, my health, guacamole, the fact that I don’t have to put on actual clothes today, movies about my favorite books, pretty much everything around me and in me. And I do mean everything, even the things that make it obvious that I’m not completely sane—because those things keep me on my toes, make me unique and remind me that I am very much alive and present in the world right now.
So I’m putting this down because I know there are many people out there who are probably dreading this onset of the holiday season, and may not be as lucky as I am at this particular moment. You may be working and hating it, or feeling desperately alone, or feeling broke, or just feeling despair while people around you seem infinitely happier and completely alien. To you I am sending great love and empathy and the message that it can, and most likely will change. And to the Universe I give thanks.