Dear Santa

hope it’s not too late

Dear Santa,

I almost didn’t write to you this year. It’s not that I’ve been particularly naughty or anything, it’s just that I wasn’t feeling particularly Christmas-y this year.

You see, every year in my entire life I’ve spent Christmas Day with my family. And this year, I can’t do that. They are very very far away. The other day was my sister’s birthday. I couldn’t see her and hug her and tell her how much I love her.

This, Santa, has made me very sad. And I’m trying to pretend that it’s not Christmas, but I really can’t do that anymore.

There are presents in my house. I’m suddenly aware that I haven’t bought anything for the stockings. All of my friends have left for the holidays. Everyone is with their families.

Eric and I are going to try and figure out how to make a turkey. This year it’s him, me and the cats. We’ve never been together on Christmas before, Santa.

I keep thinking about my family, though, and how different it’s going to be not for just me but for them this year. My parents are so happy at Christmas time because we’re all together. I feel like I’m ruining Christmas for everyone.

Comics, writers and actors tend to be miserable, needy people. I imagine having someone in your life that is all three must be exhausting. I wonder just how much energy, patience and love I drain from other people. I wonder how selfish I must seem, moving all the way out here right before the holiday. I’m missing all of the parties. Even Ray went back to Austin to throw the new year’s party. He understands how he’s needed out there. Why am I selfish and stubborn and here?

Should I be back in Texas right now? Should I be in Pittsburgh, as I haven’t seen Kevin in forever? There are all of these people in my thoughts right now, Santa, and over the past year we’ve all been spread even further apart. Jeff’s all the way in New York. So is Andi. Josh and Jami and Bill and all of the others in San Francisco. My cousin, who I just got closer to over the past couple of years, is in Connecticut and I can’t call him since the Handspring broke and lost his number. My Austin friends are going to all of their homes for Christmas, which spreads through Texas to Alabama. My sister is going out of town for the weekend. My parents will probably be working.

Santa, I should have tried harder to go home. It’s a very sunny, very warm Christmas here, and I appreciate the fact that I’m not having to spend money on new clothes (although, some smaller clothes that fit would be nice– maybe during the after Christmas sales?), and the sun makes it easier to trick myself into thinking it’s sometime in March, but I’m thinking about a trip to the Ghetto Target today to buy some Christmas-smelling items to help myself along.

I think it’s time to just enjoy the quiet Christmas. I don’t have to deal with cancelled flights or long car rides or strange food or wrapping presents last minute or finding receipts or crying babies or mulled wine or arguments or tension or any of those things that go along with the holidays. I will be here with Eric, where we will try and figure out how to cook food, ruin food, drink wine and then probably order some Chinese take-out. We’re going to rent videos and chase Cal and make a small hat for Taylor. We’ll make lots of phone calls and shed tears and maybe we’ll give each other facials. Santa, if you could not tell anyone that I sometimes give Eric facials, I’d really appreciate it. Chuy teases him enough.

So, Santa, I guess I haven’t actually asked for anything yet. Okay. Here. Please take care of all of those people that I love this year that are scattered across the nation and the world. If you could make sure that they are all warm and happy and laughing and filled with love. If you could make sure that each of them knows that I’m thinking of them and that their faces are running through my head constantly these days. If you could make sure they know that I’m okay, even though I’m a little sad these days. People keep asking me if I really like it here. I find myself defending my choice to move here all of the time. Tell them that I really do like it here. It’s just hard right now because I’m used to being with my closest friends and family at this time of the year.

And if you could make Eric forget that there is such a thing as a Playstation 2. Man, Santa. Thanks for making like, six of those things this year. Nice touch.

Please make sure that my family knows that I love them and I miss them incredibly. Make sure that their turkey and their deviled eggs turn out perfectly. Make sure that someone watches It’s a Wonderful Life with my mom, and that Dad finds the A Christmas Story marathon on TNT early in the day so he gets to see it, nap, see it, nap and see it again. Make sure that Sage gets some forbidden leftovers. Make sure that my sister has to listen to that wretched Time/Life 2-CD set and groans and then shakes her fists into the air when she realizes that I got out of having to hear those Christmas Carols for the first time ever. Make sure that they know, right before they eat their Christmas dinner, when they all sit down around each other and there’s an empty seat at the table– make sure they know that in my heart I’m still sitting right there. Make sure they know that I love them and miss them and that I hope they have a wonderful Christmas.

Okay, Santa, I’ve got some work to do. Oh, look who I’m talking to. Get to work, Santa. Oh, and I have some advice for you, too. When you go and deliver all of those toys and things that you have to assemble late at night? You might want to do it a bit quieter. One time you woke me up and had me question how you got everything done in the .05 seconds between when my parents went to bed and when I snuck down to the living room to see your work.

You know, maybe put things together outside before you bring them into the house or something.

Oh, and Santa… how come I never got that Chemistry set no matter how many times I asked? You turned me into an actor, you know.

Taylor wants more of that Gourmet Pounce that readers have been sending. You know, if you have any extra on you.

Have a great Christmas, Santa. Now that I’m a grown-up and my parents don’t buy them and hide them from me, I’ll try and leave some Pepperidge Farm Milano cookies out for you.

How do you make deviled eggs?

Love,
Pamie

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