This is the first Christmas day that I spent alone.
I'm usually with my family at home.... Samar, Davao, HK, Subic... it didn't matter which home... I was always with my family come Christmas morning.
Christmas have always been a big deal to most people. It is especially a big deal for our family because, at the same time, it's Daddy's (my maternal grandfather) birthday. We're not always with Daddy on his day. But I've always been with family whenever we had to call and greet him Merry Christmas and Happy Birthday. I may not have been with my parents one Christmas years ago... but I was with family... my titos, titas, cousins, neighbors, etc...
Christmas, more than anything else, is a family tradition. When we were kids, it was the time of year when my cousins and I would wait for our parents to wake us up at midnight because Santa just came and delivered our presents and put them in our socks labeled with our names (we got apples, toys, and candies). It was the time of year when we would wait for Tito Wences and his family to arrive because they usually bring the ham.
It is on Christmas when we get our "longed-for" gifts. It was on Christmas when I got my first Brickgame (I got the one which had a really cool-looking interface [it was bulky and heavy and I could have killed my sister if I threw it on her head]; not to mention its 13 games-in-1 feature which, at that time, was super-duper high-tech and cool). It was on Christmas when I got my Scrabble boardgame (not the cheap kind by the way, I got the expensive one... the one which you can't fold because it had an ala- Lazy Susan feature). It was on Christmas when I got my very own Word Factory. Ok, I just realized I had nerdy gifts. ANYWAY...
When Mommy (maternal grandmother) died, I guess we spent less effort on how we spent our Christmases as a family. Nevertheless, whatever kind of effort that went into the preparations... it was always with family.
Last midnight, Papa's been trying to call me. I did not answer his calls because I was so pissed that they didn't tell me earlier that they were going home to Samar and I had to spend Christmas on my own. (We'll I could actually have spent it with my Tita Iday, Mama's cousin). But I didn't really want to. It'll just remind me that I was not with my first cousins and my Titas and Titos (Mama's brothers and sisters) and Daddy, and Aubrey and Papa and Mama. I really wanted to go home and spend it with them and then maybe visit Mommy and Lola's grave in the morning.
I've been denying that I felt bad that I had to spend Christmas alone but I really wanted to wallow in self-pity today. But I'm glad I didn't.
Des have been haranguing me since I-can't-remember-which-time-of-the-week-this-week (ever since I ranted that Papa, Mama, and Aubrey left for Samar and left me for dead) that I should join her and Axis somewhere... I didn't really want to intrude because they might have their own family traditions. In short ayaw kong sumawsaw no!
Anyway, Des and Axis called yesterday to check what my plans were. Since I didn't have any besides my spa reservations, I agreed to meet with them as soon as they're done with their family dinner (with Des' family) and I was done with, I didn't realize it then, my most-painful-spa-experience (SO FAR! ayoko magsalita ng tapos).
I met with them at Eastwood tapos nagpakabundat sa Seafood Islands kung saan naloko kami ni Axis ng Shrimp and Mushroom Sisig nila. WE DIDN'T KNOW IT HAD TOFU!!! What the !@#$%^&?!
We ate and laughed till 3AM. And then I had to shoo them away kasi turn naman ng pamilya ni Axis by Christmas Lunch and they still had to travel to Cavite.
Initially, I thought they usually spent their time after Noche Buena with friends and I was surprised to find out that it was also their first time to spend Noche Buena outside the house.
I guess... when family's not around... your other "family" catches you in time... before you fall splat on your face.
Love you Tess!