the christmas cookie club

It’s always the middle of the night, isn’t it? Perhaps I am just at my most introspective in the quiet hours between midnight and four in the morning.

I put aside the perfectly nice light mystery I’ve been reading tonight. It’s well written enough, with characters that I like and a decent story line. It just isn’t what I’m seeking tonight.

So I picked up Ann Pearlman’s The Christmas Cookie Club to read again. I’ve considered sending out copies of this book to my dearest friends, much like I did The School of Essential Ingredients a few years ago. The problem with that is that these books do not necessarily speak to others the way they speak to me. Most said that they enjoyed it or it was okay, but clearly did not have the visceral reaction I did. Understandable but disappointing.

The Christmas Cookie Club reminds me of Plato; Everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. We all have losses, deaths and marriages and jobs and health problems. Even if life is going along smoothly right now, we have those losses in our past or future. Mine is not more nor less than your’s. We are human with our fears, grief, joy, loss, hope, sadness. We share that, each of us. So while I cannot understand the particulars of your pain, I know what pain and hope and despair feels like. I want to comfort you, to celebrate with you, and to receive comfort from you.

At this time, in particular, I miss my friends. It’s not that I don’t value my long-distance friends or those I know online, but I miss the women who held me while I cried. I miss the ladies to whom I listened, a real part of their lives. I wonder if I will ever see them again. Will I ever be a part of their lives again?

I think, at least here in the middle of the night, that these losses are harder than the stuff with my parents. Some of it’s life, some of it’s me. I don’t want to intrude as I know that their lives go forward. New joys and losses without me there. My own pain without having them here around me.

I haven’t made that kind of friend down here. Is it really the circumstances or have I pulled back so far that I’m not letting anyone else in?

I’m planning on making holiday treats for my more casual friends here. Then, I wonder if I should. Will they convey the things I want them to convey? Somehow I doubt it. These cookies come from my heart. Please appreciate them. Please love me.

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9 thoughts on “the christmas cookie club”

    1. I love both those books. I miss having the kinds of friends that they are about but part of that is me and my tendency to isolate here.

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  1. My experience is that no one wants to have friends any more. Too much trouble. Instead people just want to know lots of acquaintances– in a light, non-committal way. So I’m not surprised that you hesitate to make cookies for your casual acquaintances. Will they understand what you want the cookies to mean? Probably not. But will you have a good time making them? That is the real question.

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    1. It’s certainly harder to make real friends anymore. I think I tend to assume someone is a friend and then they turn out to be just acquaintances. I’ve pared down my plans a bit, I was starting to stress about treats so I’m making only a couple types instead of the crazy amount I had planned.

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      1. I think Ally is right. So easy to be a friend over the internet and yet is it truly a friend or just an acquaintance? Just know Sweets that I love you cookies or no.

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        1. I still think Internet friends disappear even more easily than real life friends, though I have had some folks in the past disagree with that. I don’t think that you’re quite “real” to people online.

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  2. QOTD: The Internet is like alcohol in some sense. It accentuates what you would do anyway. If you want to be a loner, you can be more alone. If you want to connect, it makes it easier to connect. – Esther Dyson

    Something to think about.

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  3. I will always consider you one of my friends, Zaz. I do tend to be a person who has a lot of acquaintances and few true friends. I find myself though feeling more deeply connected to those who I’ve shared some very painful things with and who stick around even when I try desperately to push the entire world including them away. I’ve said it before, I do wish we lived closer.

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    1. I surely wish we did. It would be fun to hang out with you – plus MN and Scott are from your neck of the woods. We could all go out for Indian food and coffee – and I want to go to that Tea Shoppe you frequent. But you crazy people live in the great white north. I suggest y’all move down by me. But since we have to live so far apart, I’m glad you’re one of my long-distance friends.

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