Reflection on Christmastime Singlehood

This year is my first year where I will not be home – with my parents and sisters – for Christmas. Ever. In my life.

Last year I spent Thanksgiving with a migraine, alone at my house, actually thankful that no one else was around to witness my misery. The next day I went to the movie theater alone to see Skyfall (007). When I arrived, I instantly noticed that every person was with another person – and moreso than usual. Numerous groups of large families who appeared to be overjoyed to be spending time with each other, evident by their boisterous bubbling and general cheer, didn’t hush until well into the film previews. There were couples here and there as well. I am nearly positive that I was the only person alone.

That was not my first time going to see a movie alone, but it was the first time I truly felt alone. I actually faintly recall sitting with an empty seat next to me. But, mercifully, that film was action-packed and featured the only Adele song I have ever truly liked – and actually, I loved it – so I left with only just a small scar on my heart. I vowed to never watch a movie alone around the holidays again.

I will be heading down to my cousin’s apartment tomorrow to spend Christmas Eve and Day with her. Since she is required to work normal hours tomorrow, I will be taking the morning and early afternoon solitary. I have put off thinking about this potential quandary – or gift – until this evening, which I call Christmas Eve Eve.

I could wallow in self-misery. I am single. I am alone around the holidays. I am in Los Angeles, the loneliest city in America. But in this moment, as I sit next to my Christmas tree and listen to my Spotify Christmas station and experience the senses from marinara and pasta cooking away, I am really embracing the potential of tomorrow.

I have no one to limit me other than myself. I will not accept my singleness during this day as tragic. I am leaning toward waking up early to watch the sunrise from the beach or from Griffith Park. After that, I can drive around the Beverly Hills mansions or go see what shops are open in Venice Beach. Or, I can be excessively lazy and wake up late, then watch Love Actually followed by The Holiday, eat my mom’s sweets that arrived in the mail two days ago, and then head down to Orange County at my projected time of 2pm to go watch a movie at a small Laguna Beach movie theater off the PCH that, hopefully, few people will be attending.

A sweet card from my parents. I don’t feel so alone when I receive something as simple as this:

Processed with VSCOcam with b1 preset

Hi, camera!

I bought the Canon Rebel T2i 550D just a week ago. It is very nice, but I honestly am a serious amateur at using a DSLR camera. When I took a photography class, I was in high school and it was a Pentax 35mm film camera. In college, studying film was literal. We didn’t have any sort of digital filmmaking classes available, though a lot of my peers shot on the Red or another expensive digital video camera. I learned on a little Arri and shot on a bigger Arri for my thesis. Using film. With a cinematographer to translate my verbal explanations of the shots I wanted into lens choices. I certainly know what I want and how to get it in the most basic sense, but right now that means changing my ISO and aperture around until I get the lighting and look that I picture in my head. Let’s just say I’ll be doing some reading to re-learn the basics of photography and then will be giving myself some time to learn the multiple settings available to me on my T2i.

And the next thing will be a nice study on lenses.