It probably sounds a little odd but I have been enjoying the very long post begun by MWM regarding many of our manipulative fathers (and some of our mothers). The stories are heartrenching and it has taken a lot of time for us all to write and a lot of time to read and be a part of. It has been more healing than anything I have tried or done in a long long time. husband and I will be alone for Christmas this year. No one has taken us under their wing, and normally this would be something I fret and worry about until something is either planned by us or we are invited somewhere. I don't feel bad about it at all. I know in theory that when I let myself go to that dark place where my father never had a kind word for me and beat me and called me names, or remember the horror we went through as a family with L's dad and step-mom that those things are not now and I don't have to fight that battle this very moment. That post - especially the idea of how small we were when these things were happening - has really opened my eyes to how much I have to actively participate in enjoying my life. I have a very nice life and a wonderful husband and I shouldn't let those people from my past take that away from me. Our blood relationship doesn't give them a special dispensation to enter my head with their bitterness. I usually sleep in. With all of the muscle fatigue I have from any regular day I just need more sleep/recovery time than others. I've had a sinus thing for a few weeks, and it isn't really bothering me except at night just as I drop off and I start coughing. Last night was bad, and I got up and took some cough syrup with Hydrocodone in it which helped the cough but keeps me jittery, so it's kind of a trade off. I dozed off around 3 AM and was up again at 5:30 trying to fall asleep before husband got up for work. husband finally got out of bed to get the dogs fed around 6:15 after his phone vibrated the 3rd time. It gets too hot in the morning for me to sleep if the door is closed, so I ask him to leave it open. Normally I sleep through that. But I could see him feed the dogs, and then getting his cereal ready so he could go to work, and I thought, "I'm going to need to shut the door so I don't see all the activity." Then I thought, "That poor man - if I just get up and close the door he'll think I'm never satisfied. 'Door open, please.' 'Door closed, please.' I am so lucky to have a man who loves me so much and whom I love. I need to stop being unhappy about things that are years ago and thousands of miles away and just go tell him that I love him." And so I did. I got some nice hugs and cuddles, and went back to sleep. And I woke up with a sense of safety and strength that I rarely feel. That's day one. I need to keep remembering that feeling. Merry Christmas to you all. I'm spending mine with my favorite person and I couldn't be happier. I hope that you all will have a moment this week to spend time with the people whom you love the most and who make your life good for you.