We went out to a dive bar in my neighborhood on the Upper Westside. A few other lost souls were there trying to do their best to remember to forget. In between beers and trips to the bathroom, we sat and talked about our dreams -- the ones that had gone unfulfilled and the ones we'd turned our backs on.
We were there to rescue each other from ourselves for a few hours. After drinking and snorting our way to oblivion we went back to my place and had sex the way only the truly detached can. We did our best to please ourselves and occasionally acknowledged the other one on top or bottom. Then we passed out. I didn't go to sleep in those days. I passed out and came to.
The next morning we did sober what we did drunk. Then we went to the Broadway Diner for breafast. It's a little greasy spoon on Broadway and 101st that somehow survives. We ate breakfast and talked about how the next year would be different. We probably knew it wouldn't but it always felt good to look ahead, especially because there wasn't much to look back on.
That night was almost a decade ago. My days of running to a bottle or a baggie to escape myself are long gone. I'm not some saint now. I'm still struggling in many ways and always will be. The only difference is now I'm more conscious and accepting of it. I'm six garbage cans and five lids. I still don't think I'm lovable or worth love, but I don't quite hate myself so much. The end I had written for myself isn't in the cards right now and I'm good with that.
I realize this isn't exactly a feel good Christmas Eve story. Still, I have nothing but fond memories of that night.
Just two lost people clinging to each other because there was nothing else to hold on to.
** Loyal readers (there are three of you) may recognize that I've written on this night before. I guess it stays with me). Here is a link to an earlier take on that night that is a tad more descriptive.