Alone or lonely?
I experienced a few firsts this Christmas, which got me thinking that I have an amazing family to have not experienced these before.
This year was the first time since I left home at 17, that I didn't travel down home on Christmas Eve for Christmas at my folks house, as my sister hosted the family lunch at hers, which was a lovely change. Although this did change a lot of the routine.
The usual is, well last 11 years, I've travelled from Perth to my folks place on Christmas Eve with half a million other people travelling south, to spend the evening catching up, cooking and taking my Grandma to midnight mass (10.30pm really at our local church), before champagne breakfast on Christmas morning, family lunch, dinner with close family friends, and my eldest sister and I escaping as soon as night falls to check out Christmas lights in Bunbury. This has been the norm for years and I like it!
So this year with it at my sisters house, meant sleeping at my own place, by myself.
I still went with my Grandma to midnight mass (proper 11.30pm to 1am mass) on Christmas Eve, which was lovely other than the priest thinking he was in a high church in England. Just to be clear Im not really a religious person, but I can't let my Grandma drive that late at night let alone go to church alone, when it is so important to her.
This meant I woke up alone in my apartment this morning, with no champagne breakfast, no family to open presents and wish Merry Christmas to. It felt strange! At 29, it was a first for me and I can honestly say, I DONT LIKE IT!
I couldn't have stayed at my sisters house as my other sister, her partner and their two kids have come up from down with, and took up all the spare rooms/beds/mattresses at her house.
The other first I experienced was spending Christmas night, alone in my apartment, like any other night of the week.
Part of me thinks this is ok and I'm independent, it's what I do every other night of the week, but my another part of me (the sentimental part) thinks this is very sad, that Christmas is about family, friends and being with the ones you love.
I know it's silly and so many people I know, and around the world have done this for years, but being the first year for me it's hit home pretty hard.
Don't get me wrong, I don't think I have to run out and force a relationship with the next guy I meet so I don't have to wake up alone on Christmas, it just made me feel pretty lonely and sad.
I guess if next Christmas is at my sister's house and not my folks then I'll have to pack my swag!