Tonight I will attend the annual Christmas get-together of the now defunct theatre company I belonged to in high school. I will only know one person at the party: my director. When I was sixteen I had a huge crush on him, which he cultivated with all the strange affection that only exists in the world of theatre. Many of the less attractive girls, the less popular girls and the girls who hovered on the outskirts loved him and wanted him. I was sixteen and he was ten years older. I remember one occasion where he rubbed my back while I cried about something or other. Looking back, it was probably inappropriate, but at the time it was my little triumph. Look, he’s paying attention to me, and not you. Sixteen year olds are strange people sometimes with strange desires that they don’t understand.
I have too many Christmas parties to attend. I spent too much on gifts, as usual. The holidays are certainly a time of excesses. I wonder if Jesus would approve. I like Christmas the most when I spend it with my six younger siblings. The oldest of them is fourteen and the youngest recently turned two. I am the big sister, twenty-two years old and worshipped because I am graduating college, and I get to have a job and drive a car. I secretly worship them because they get to roll around in mud and on Christmas morning they rip off the wrapping on their gifts without thinking about bills. They aren’t old enough to open a package of socks or a AAA membership card. They get toys and candy. I want stocking full of toys and candy, too.
OK, that’s going overboard, because so far, every year I have gotten my stocking filled with the exact same goodies that are in my siblings’ stockings. I like that, and even if I don’t need a notepad key chain, it’s much appreciated.
I can’t stop thinking about them today. I have three brothers and three sisters and I generally missed seeing them growing up because they live in Florida and I live in New York. Some play sports, some are cheerleaders and some are future academics, but I’ve never seen them play in a game or on a stage. Likewise, they’ve never seen me in a dance recital or in a play. I love them more than my own life, and though popular media has made it cliché, I’d gladly throw myself under the wheels of a semi to save them. They don’t know it, because I’m so far away. Most are too young to understand the sentiment. My father tells me that they always include me in prayers, which is nice. I know they love me back. There is nothing sweeter than a big hug from little arms.
Oh, and one last thing. For Christmas this year I want to be five again for a day. I want to stop worrying for one hour.
I want to feel like I did when I had my first
kiss for just one second. I want to see my
brothers and sisters growing up all over again
and hold them as babies one more time. I want
to take back the things I said. If you can give
me these things...well...I don't know if I'd do
anything right this time, but oh, I'd try.