“This is a strange Christmas Eve…”–Winston Churchill, from Christmas speech to Congress in U.S., December 1941.
There have been grim times in this country before, but there has not been a Christmas like this one. The darkness has covered the commercial glitter. In person events are cancelled. Families are celebrating the holidays separately.
LGBT people are not really strangers to this sort of thing. People on their own, chosen families, making do or having something really traditional, this is how many of us have lived our lives. I have been seriously fortunate, having accepting family and good friends. I’ve also had what was preparation for pandemic living; I’ve had family and friends spread out across the country and have grabbed moments with them when I could. I was in a long-distance relationship with the man I happily married but we had a distance of 1,400 miles between us for about two-and-a-half years before he was able to move in with me.
“It Gets Better” sounds like a cliché, but it is true. There are better times on the horizon. This is, as I said, not the first December where the mood matches the short days and dark nights. There must always be optimism or battles would not be won. As Dr. Seuss said: “Christmas…doesn’t come in a store.”
Last year, my TV screen went blooey about December 10th or so. We ordered a replacement, but for much of the rest of the month we were not exposed to the glittery happily-ever-after Holiday specials that infest the airwaves. We missed “It’s A Wonderful Life,” but not much else. We felt better without the commercial phoniness. We watched DVDs on the laptop and on New Year’s Eve we flipped around between webcam scenes of various cities.
So, there’s always room for hope and optimism. We’ll close with more from Winston Churchill’s address to Congress, all those Christmas Eves ago:
“Let the children have their night of fun and laughter. Let us grown-ups share in their unstinted pleasures before we turn again to the stern task.”
Jeff Baker blogs about reading and writing sci-fi, fantasy and horror, and other sundry matters, on or around the thirteenth of each month. His fiction has appeared in Queer Sci-Fi’s “Innovation,” and his non-fiction has appeared on the Amazing Stories website. He and his husband Darryl wish readers all the best for this unusual season. He can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Jeff-Baker-Author-176267409096907 and posts fiction on his blog https://authorjeffbaker.com/