I should have known better.

I decided to drive 2 hours south of where I live to visit my "family" for Christmas Eve. It's been family tradition for the extended family to get together for dinner and exchange presents on the Eve.

I haven't done very much of that in the last 10 years, realizing that I didn't have much of a sense of belonging, so I did other things - ie - stayed alone.

I went this time because my Aunt, who has esssentially been the glue holding the family together has announced she'll be moving to the other coast soon. And the matriarch of the family, 97, is ailing. She won't be around much longer.

So I went, thinking, this is the last time our family will ahve this type of celebration.

Dinner was pleasant as everyone sat around the table and talked. But as soon as dinner ended, I suddenly found myself adrift in a sea of people, totally disconnected, with no one to talk to. Everyone else had a significant other, or kids, or siblings to be with. I had no one. I was alone.

Like a pinball lost in a pinball machine. For a good 30 minutes I sat alone, stared into my cell phone, and went outside to cry a few times. I tried my best to try and assimilate into the proceedings, but everyone was having such a great and grand old time, and I'd been crying, I couldn't find a way to barge into any of the pairings or groupings that had developed.

I was totally alone at my own "family's" gathering. I spent a couple hundred bucks buying gifts, renting a car, and driving down there to be with them, only to feel completely worthless.

Suffice it to say, I left. I was very sad, and lonely, and drove back home Christmas Eve.

Christmas morning, and just like every other fucking year this past 20 years, I'm alone - again.

I really, really, fucking hate the holidays. And right now, I really hate the trainwreck of a life my life has turned out to be. All I ever wanted was to have love in my life. By way of family, friends, and romance. I've got none of it. I'm totally and completely alone.

I should have never been born.

Oh, and Merry Christmas, everyone!