Christmas 2016, or The One with The Racist Grandparents and The Addict Brother
The last time I saw my brother at Christmas it was 2012. We unwrapped presents with dad and posed for pics in funny hats. His second son was born three months later.
Christmas 2013: my brother on the run, but a family of parents and step-parents, kids and grandkids united. A day tinged by sadness, but manageable.
Christmas 2014: my brother on the run again, presumably holed-up in a shack yakked out on meth. Again, parents and step-parents united. Brother was arrested two months later after a standoff with police. I found out via Facebook whilst on vacation.
Christmas 2015: my brother in jail, Cottonwood actually, getting clean. Parents and step-parents united, along with sis-in-law, her new husband and kids. One big happy family. My brother would be released two months later, only to fall off the wagon, steal a car, and alienate us all within a week. He returned to prison to serve a 7 month term.
Christmas 2016: my brother was released December 14, just in time for the holidays! He is not welcome at our dad's, he is not allowed to see his children, so our Christmas was fractured. He attended NA after dinner.
I have grown used to pretending I'm an only child, so a day with my dad, stepmom, and grandparents could have been lovely. And then grandpa had to go and start talking about the ni**ers. And the sand ni**ers. And his admiration of the KKK.
I hit my limit with Christmas this year, you guys.
I try really really hard to make happiness between Halloween and New Years. I cook, I bake, I craft. I listen to Christmas music and watch Christmas movies and craft Christmas cocktails. I donate money and gifts to those in need. I spend quality time with the people I love. I TRY.
But is it so wrong that I just want to spend this day alone, avoiding humanity, hoping the day passes without incident so that I can forget it for another 364?