I suppose it's been a gray afternoon for days, but that's winter in Seattle - a few months full of sleepy sighs as clouds blur into skyline, and bleary eyes whenever the sun pokes its head out from under the covers for a few hazy minutes before burrowing away again.
I'm feeling pretty gray myself today, a little fuzzy around the edges. It's Christmas time, and while I always tend to get a little sad around the holidays - blame nostalgia, the slowness of limbs and thinking in the cold, the seeming hourlessness of the days as the year ends and plenty of time to reflect on life and the ending of things - I usually get with the spirit of things. But I'm just not feeling it this year, and that saddens me even more. Normally, I dig under the bed for the box of lights and ornaments within the first few days of December, giddy to sprinkle a bit of Christmas around the windows and bring home the smallest fir tree I can find to fill the apartment with it's wintry perfume. This year, it took me until yesterday to dig and sprinkle, and I had to drag my butt to do it.
Maybe some switch went off with turning 25. That sense of innocence is so pervasive during the holidays - I know its there because I've felt it before - but what I feel more acutely right now is its absence, like a tangible loss. I'm not a child anymore by anyone's standards (the exception being if they see my behavior when at Disneyland), and that stings a bit. But really, this is nothing new, not to me or to pretty much anyone old enough to notice such things. Maybe reading some Salinger would be soothing if only to commiserate, but maybe I should just suck it up. Maybe I should take down one of the stockings hung with care on the bookshelf (I don't have a chimney, and besides, the bookshelf fits us better if we're using symbols here), place it on my foot, and give myself a Christmas kick in the butt. (Side note: I've said "butt" twice, three if you count just now, and it makes me giggle - maybe I'm still a child after all. Butt butt butt.)
I have my health, my friends, my family. My boyfriend is made of magic and my cat loves my lap. My apartment, finally dressed in its Christmas best, is mad cute. I'm writing again. And drawing! (Get ready for some hilarious canvas-based presents, buddies.) If I get sad sometimes, that's okay, because it leaves my silliness and my love for all of these things intact. And when I stand in the kitchen doorway framed by Christmas lights, I can't help but feel a little glow.
So if today's a bit gray - well, gray is my favorite color, anyway.