December is "Best of" Month - Introduction
Giving Thanks after Thanksgiving
The day after Thanksgiving was one of the best of my life. God knows I needed it - it's been a helluva week: lots of miscommunication, high emotional energy from every front, and fatigue from running myself around too much. So I took advantage of having the apartment to myself (both roommates had left town for the holiday) and sent the alarm clock to hell, without dessert, the night before. That morning, for the first time since I don't know when, I woke up on my own volition. After lolling in bed for half an hour (no, I'm not going to tell you what I was doing), I padded into the kitchen - NAKED - and whipped up a breakfast burrito that Jamie Oliver would have creamed over (but not while naked, go figure), and put on a pot of tea. After eating and then popping my vitamins, I padded back into my room where the heat was cranked up against the first frost of Winter '04 and finished watching Tootsie, which I had started the night before while still in the throes of a turkey-induced coma. And then watched all of Kramer vs. Kramer.
Have I mentioned that I didn't shower until dinnertime? That I hadn't washed my hair in three days? Yes, it WAS the perfect time to lean in and give me a big kiss - I know you would have. Oh, and the piece de resistance was that my phone had spent the night in Manhattan, at my hosts' house, after I forgot it there. Again I blame the turkey. That was some good turkey. And I didn’t miss my phone at all.
God that was a good day.
Today, the day after the day after Thanksgiving, is turning out pretty good as well. I exchanged last night’s party plans for staying home and cooking for myself. I took an herbed bath, and I think I was asleep by 9:00. Unlike the day after Thanksgiving, I didn't linger too long in bed this morning. Oh wait, yes I did. I watched Rooster Cogburn, starring a cancer infested John Wayne and a wobbly Katherine Hepburn.
I read over this and have the urge to defend myself against those who might think that I'm getting old, I'm boring, or I'm a misanthrope. How is it that days in which I do absolutely nothing and see and speak to absolutely no one are the zenith of my life? It's that they were the days when I finally learned the pleasure of my own company, something that, when I was younger, I thought I already knew. I wasted faaaaaar too much of my 20's strangled by loneliness, before I figured out that, as a child, my own company had not really been pleasurable to me - that I had hid myself away only because being alone had been preferable to the company of my family. Isn't it interesting how long we can hang onto a lie? But really, if you're incapable of being your own best friend, what are you going to do in those moments when others - family, friends, lovers - have no time for you? It happens you know.
It took a long time after waking up from the lie before I actually and finally learned how to enjoy my own company. For real. And it's because these were the days in which I learned how to be my own friend that I give thanks after Thanksgiving.
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