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December 25, 1982, was the worse Christmas I ever had and it has basically affected every Christmas I have had since then with just seeing houses, apartments, malls, streets, parks and Santa in his multitude of settings that got the feeling of the holiday back to me. My beloved Flo died that day and I still feel the pain I felt that day. Flo was my aunt by definition but more of a mother than my own. She showed me what unconditional love was, she made me feel like the most precious human being. Oh she could give me a scathing lecture when she thought I was doing something wrong and call me all sorts of names but don’t you dare to try the same or she would turn on you so quick you wouldn’t know what happened. Bill and I would soon be separating but I will always be grateful for his being there.
As I look over my diaries the past 35 years it seems until I retired I worked on Christmas Day and since I retired I spend the day at the movies.
December 25, 1992 Worked from 10 AM to 10 PM December 25, 2002 Retired Went to see “Catch Me If You Can” with Ray (a doctor friend of mine who died the following year) December 25, 2012 Went to see “Les Miz” by myself.
Here and there Christmas Day varied like in 2011 spent the afternoon on the Breezeway with John B., Poochie (now deceased), Larry, Linda (now deceased) Roosevelt, Jim, Dot (now deceased) having pizza and sodas. There was the year (1999) I spent in the hospital with congestive heart failure but for 23 years it was working long hours--I would usually take an extra shift so someone could spend the day with their family--and the last 12 years going to the movies.
Either Christmas Eve or Day I would make a turkey with all the trimmings and fix plates for the security guard on duty and a few people I knew who didn’t have anyone and so they stayed locked in their apartment waiting for the holidays to pass.
Something I don’t talk about is that we celebrate Christmas and Hanukkah the third Tuesday of December. Who are ‘we’? We are the ‘Buddy’ volunteers who work all year round with teenagers who are HIV+ and/or have AIDS and have been kicked out of their home. There are about a dozen volunteers and a dozen kids and the kids decide what kind of food they want (pizza usually wins) and we will go to an Italian restaurant and have a day filled with fun and laughter but NO food fights! LOL
One thing I do know is that every Christmas Santa will visit me and that’s the bottom line!

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