Yes, malls are tres terrible. The quality of Christmas chocolate is a crime. And jesus, there are women being set on fire in Brooklyn elevators. Life is messy and there's no Freddie Mercury to make us feel a little better about it all.
Man, I love December. For the promise of a new year just days away. Starting over. I covet January like nobody's business and nothing can make me feel bad about that.
To the cancer babes, Trish, Freddie and Susan, who will forever share my milestones and continue to be braver and look much better than I ever will. We will all have a bonanza year. Mark my words.
To Sharon, Shirley, Ashlyn, Pam and Carmela, who are knee-deep in cancer shit, I cheerlead you every day. The desperate guilt I feel for getting my respite now is only tempered by the fact that we all know respites can end at a moment's notice.
To my mom, who keeps pushing me forward in the line - you're next, Carissa, go! - I can't ever express what it means to have a person in my life who puts up with my shitty moods, sharp tongue, and impatience to be my agent, my friend and the person I least want to let down.
To my girls. Who are as impatient and foul-tempered as I am and still manage to be pretty sweet, funny and interesting to grow up with. You're both the reason I'm taking guitar lessons and joining a running clinic and juicing every day and trying to live a purposeful life.
To Pete, who grabbed my hand and dragged me outside for walks when I felt like dying. I chose to see myself as you did and managed to avoid the mirror and pictures of myself to keep the illusion alive. You never made me feel sick and you've been unendingly patient with my dark moments, even though they were about my fear of leaving you alone and that must have scared you shitless. Whatever I say can never be enough.
And to the friends and co-workers who surprised me with their caring, the bazillion messages, presents and genuine interest in my cancer bullshit... even the ones who were uneasy with it all. You made it feel less freaky and lonely. Which is really what any of us with the c-dawg are trying to feel every day.
You are all the reason I'm straining against my leash to get this fucking year over with so I can do, say, learn and become oh so many new and sparkly things in 2012. Bon appetit!