I am bound by the season and its trappings.

Every shining moment can be turned over to reveal its lusterless reality. Each merry greeting secretly contains within it the shame of untimely solitude. I smilingly pine for release behind gritted teeth, I silently yearn for rescue while my brain boils in despair. My apparent cheer and serenity are rewarded with lies, more lies, sneering lies and traps. Survival… two weeks of keeping up appearances, of soul-killing sweetness and begrudging generosity… are ended only by a return to normal.

Normal is negligent and cold and often alone, but it also means freedom and possibilities and secret conversations that sustain.