Gritty Details

Friday, December 23, 2016

Tonight's Poet Corner: Introspection

So, today is Christmas Eve Eve. I'm at my in-laws' house, and together, we've had a lovely dinner, made little wreath ornaments out of pipe cleaners, and watched TV and a Gabriel Iglesias comedy special. I really do want to make this introspection warm and fuzzy, talking about what I love about Christmas and how grateful I am to celebrate it with my wife and her family.

And it's going to be a great few days! Christmas Eve is tomorrow, and we'll be also celebrating the first night of Hanukkah. So there'll be cookies to decorate, latkes to eat, dreidels to spin, and Cards Against Humanity to play. And then Christmas: After presents, it's time for a hike, dinner with the Kilzers (including my wife's grandfather), and a movie (Moana, specifically). And it's not over yet: We get to see some of my wife's friends the day after Christmas! So it's going to be really nice. I will be surrounded by friends and loved ones, and the end of the year should hopefully go smoothly where I am.

Well...that good old reality has to sink in, huh? 2017 is near. Specifically, inauguration day. And as much as I am trying to enjoy myself, the repeating mantra in my head as I go about my business is "GOD HELP US."

This year has been crazy, especially in America, and I know that if I get too cerebral, all I'll talk about is the underlying fear that this might be the last good Christmas I have. That this might be the last time I get to sing carols, open presents, eat sugary treats, look at Christmas trees and lights, or simply enjoy a winter's day without worrying about you-know-what sabotaging every step I've taken to create a brighter future for me and my loved ones. Yes, I worry about my marriage. Yes, I worry about my rights. Yes, I worry about the republic. Would it kill my brain to stop thinking about it during Christmas time?!

So...I'm going to hand the baton off to someone who might be more optimistic, and who has been my rock for the past couple of months. Don't expect a rambling stream of paragraphs, but hopefully the message she has, and by proxy I have, for you will leave you more confident this Christmas and Hanukkah and in the years ahead.

Happy Holidays to everyone. I love you so much. Stay strong. Stay happy.

Take it away, wifey.

- Belinda


Hey everyone, it's the Cardboard Wife! I don't know, I thought that might be a good moniker or something, but when I write it out it looks weird. Anyway!

I know this year has been a bit of a dumpster fire. At least, that's what everyone's been saying in my personal echo-chamber bubble of the internet, and to some extent I agree. It has not been the best year. There have been some pretty terrible things that happened this year.

But there have also been some pretty great things that have happened this year! Belinda got their teaching credential! I quit my terrible job! We got married! We went on a couple of vacations! We saw family and friends that we hadn't been able to see in a long time! There are small victories.

Sometimes it's harder to celebrate the small stuff when there are so many terrible big things happening, but it is so, so important to hold on to them. You need to keep a light on in the darkness. That's really what all these winter holidays are all about: bringing light to the darkness.

We now seem to be entering the winter of our country. Things are looking a little darker. But we can get through this. Find your small victories. Find your community. Find your light, and it will guide you through.

Be kind to each other. Be kind to yourselves.

Have a great night and a great weekend, everybody.

- Arden

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