Sometimes There Are Tears on Christmas

One of my neighbors is outside sitting on the steps right under my kitchen windows, sobbing into her cell phone. The sound of her crying--heaving, gasping for air--is heartbreaking. From what I can gather, she was dumped by her boyfriend last night.

I want to go tell her that any man who breaks up with her on Christmas Eve is not worth crying over. I want to tell her that no matter what, do NOT get back together with him. Cut all contact with him. Act like he's dead. And when the stores open tomorrow, she should go buy herself a good consolation present--something healthy like a massage, a day at a spa, a month of personal training or vegetarian cooking classes.

I don't think she's going to do that. She's still stuck in why.don'

Maybe he was too cheap to buy her a Christmas present so he figured he'd get out of it by breaking up with her. I should just go take all the ice cream in my freezer downstairs and set it down on the steps next to her. With a large spoon. Except, even though she's having a very public meltdown, I don't know her well enough to go put my unasked-for advice into the mix. At least she has someone to talk to--a friend who will listen while she cries.

In all seriousness, so many people have things going on in their lives that are a thousand times more serious than getting dumped by some loser, and they don't feel they have a friend they can call up and talk to about whatever is going on. Combine that loneliness with the reluctance to seek professional therapy plus the overhyped fantasy of how people spend the holidays--a bustling, warm home filled to the brim with laughter, presents, and homemade Christmas cookies--and it's no wonder that people get so depressed at this time of year.

I don't have an easy answer for people who are depressed--or for the crying girl downstairs--but all I can think, dear reader, is that I hope you have the best gift of all: someone to talk to, someone who is a good listener, someone who loves you.

Photo (cc) by kevin dooley


Michelle said…
I am thankful for having that in my life and being there for my friends when sometimes they just need the shoulder to cry on and a big glass of wine.
Liz Dwyer said…
Good friends are treasures indeed. Hope you had a wonderful holiday!
Kari said…
She should do this:
Daniel said…
Los Angelista,
Even if there are worse things, that woman still hurt. It's her hurt, in her heart. So it hurts to her. I'll dignify her with that.

About the loneliness ... well, the kid's "mother" wanted to see them (first time in lord knows how long) and understanding that is important for them, they went. I stared at the walls. I think I better start fearing life post kids, lol.

PS: The word verification thingy says "burpa". Now THAT'S a true one!
1969 said…
Amen. Never lose sight of the small blessings we sometimes take for granted. I am so happy for health, love and family and a roof over our heads. So many people have real problems.

Wiahsing you all a happy holiday season!
Liz Dwyer said…
GUESS WHO IS AT HER HOUSE RIGHT NOW? Sigh, I don't know why I'm so disappointed. Maybe because I've been in her shoes before?

That sign is BEYOND awesome! That needs to be available in stores for when ladies need it.

Burpa? Lol! How you been old friend! It's been a long time. So true that suffering is suffering, no matter what form it comes in. Glad your kids mom wanted to see them. I know that has lots more wrapped up in it than I can even imagine. I also think a whole lot about life and what happens when Mr. O and Mr. T are gone. Sigh.

I once read that life is like a barbed wire fence. Sometimes you're on the smooth part, sometimes you're on the part that sticks you. But either way, you gotta keep going and count your blessings. Sometimes it's hard to remember that tho. And majorly happy holidays to you all,too.

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