Drama Sad Christmas

Luz does the best she can with her life and the choices she's made. She doesn't quite agree when it's said that there are no regrets because she does regret. She laments some of the choices she's made and regrets letting certain people into her life. She knows that those she regrets allowing into her life came with the purpose of teaching her something, and honestly, after some disagreements and painful episodes, she always comes to the same conclusion: "I like myself more and more every time."

She never denied vanity in herself and always owned it. When people often tried to belittle her, saying she was vain, she would respond, "I am, I am vain, and with much pride because there is nothing more enlightened than liking ourselves." And that vanity always stood out in Luz.

She also never considered herself better than anyone else but knows exactly what she's worth and recognizes the falsehood in others from miles away. Deep down, she wished that those who accused her of being frivolous and vain could see that Luz doesn't have a bigger ego than anyone else, and what she does, she does not to stand out but to exist and get to know herself. Over the years, she learned to live with the chronic anxiety she felt every day. She learned to control her anxiety through exercise and maintaining a healthy diet, which became her strength. This way, she could minimize the episodes of terror she sometimes experienced.

She also learned to identify what triggered her anxiety. She knew that if she didn't follow her morning rituals, it would cause anxiety. If she ate more than she should, as we sometimes tend to do, it caused her anxiety. If she didn't run her daily 10 km, she wouldn't feel good and felt anxious. She also discovered that her anxiety was often due to certain people in her life. They left her in a bad mood, drained of energy, and anxious because she couldn't understand how she ended up feeling that way. She learned to read everything happening around her as best as she could and learned to choose her battles and paths to follow.

Did those people who criticized Luz know that she struggled every day with a terror inside her that almost led her to despair? They probably didn't know. I assume that if they did, they wouldn't be so harsh. Or maybe they would be, as the problem wasn't in Luz's vanity but in the malice of others. Often, these other people weren't directly related to Luz. They were individuals whose interaction amounted to no more than a good morning or good afternoon, but still felt entitled to judge Luz.

But Luz handled them well and thought, "Poor things, they don't know what they're saying, they don't even know me." And they were repetitive, as if they all thought the same way. They seemed rehearsed.

Luz was not a saint, of course, but she knew very well how to keep her opinions to herself. She was also very realistic. She didn't say anything just to say it, words never escaped her mouth gratuitously. But inside, she could think whatever she wanted without the need to open her mouth and deliberately hurt someone.

Luz had always been the target of defamatory campaigns about her, knowing well what it's like to be hurt and denigrated massively. Hence, Luz didn't trust many people, and perhaps the place where she is now is exactly where the universe worked to put her, far from all the accusations and harsh judgments.

Luz always thought "If they don't ask how I am, then they don't have the right to opine about me."

Luz argues that we should have everything planned to avoid anxieties and bad decisions, to prevent doing things without thinking and regretting them later. So, after planning for years, she knew exactly what to do when she won a substantial prize in the Euro Millions.

She trained her body and mind to be calm. Very calm. Only then could she do what she had planned. And not telling anyone is her grand plan. Not sharing with anyone because she doesn't know with whom to share, or who would be happy to hear the news. She would only tell her husband, who, of all people, would be the most balanced to handle such news. And he supports her in everything.

Luz's mother would probably reduce it to mere luck but would be satisfied enough to know that something good happened to her. Luz's daughter would be ecstatic, and perhaps she would be the only person Luz would feel a great relief in being able to help in her life. Luz's father would know from the tone of her voice that the news was good, as he no longer shared his whole being with them. The older siblings would probably ignore it, only the younger one, with whom she always had a closer relationship, would be excited.

These would be the people to tell, but Luz doesn't want to. "Why tell?" she thinks. Would they value her more for it? For sharing or for the luck? Or for sharing the luck?

Luz doesn't know and prefers not to tell and help in her own way. Or share her luck but in a less effusive way. It's not an easy moment to digest. Suddenly having so much money in her account that it even causes her anxiety. The way she found to control the moment and her anxiety was precisely that: not to tell. She only said, "I won some money and would like to make a transfer to your account, a Christmas gift." Christmas was just a few weeks away.

And so, she did. After contacting the lawyer who assisted her in delicate matters, she made the necessary donations correctly and as provided by the law. She transferred two portions to her mother, one to be shared with her older brother, with whom Luz has no contact, and is unaware of his reaction. His haughtiness and harsh judgments about Luz make him someone she can live with in her indifference. Thus, she asks her mother to make the donation in her name, not Luz's.

She spoke with her older sister, with whom there is a profound distance, but they can still communicate, despite her harsh judgments and misunderstandings. Luz only said that she had won some money and would like to give her a Christmas gift. The sister, as cold as ever, murmurs a thank you and Luz seems to picture the subtle, forced smile and indifferent gaze that so aptly define her.

With her younger brother, it was easy, the deal is more natural. There were also certain episodes where communication and understanding failed, but the youngest is undoubtedly the one who vibes the most with Luz. "Bro, give me your account number for me to make a transfer. I won some money and would like to give you a Christmas gift." Obviously, he didn't know how much Luz had won or the amount of the transfer, but he provided the number without thinking much. "So, sis, you won some money, how? Where? What do you mean by that?" he asked. "Trust me, bro, it's just a Christmas gift, okay?" Luz replied assertively.


Given that it's Christmas, Luz manages to go to her family's hometown. As always, the whole family tries to gather for the celebrations. The rare moments when they resemble a family. These moments are not always easy; there is a lot of judgment, much contempt masked in red, green, and bright white. "Christmas is for children," they always say, especially those who don't have money to buy presents for everyone and those who can have money but have no intention of bothering with gifts for certain adults. Invoking the children is indeed a very plausible excuse, whatever the intention. Luz has certainly done it too, but due to a lack of money, as she often found a way to bypass gifts for those who didn't appreciate her. And Luz knows, but she also knows that it is not in her nature to do what others do just for the sake of doing it, and even less with the intention of devaluing or belittling someone.

And this year, a lack of money wouldn't be anyone's excuse. On the journey to her hometown, Luz momentarily thought about the reactions when she arrived, whether they would be different, whether they would welcome her more warmly and sincerely, whether they would look at her without those accusatory and vague glances as usual. Those looks that always made her feel disposable, not present, at times a monster, at other times pitied by Luz. "What a pity she's like this, poor thing, there's nothing to be done."

Luz manages to reach her parents' house on time amid an incredibly festive and absurd scenario, as the snow on the roads and houses was never a constant; in fact, it never snows in the town where she was born. Luz stops the car, hurried and excited to see everyone gathered, very anxious but in a way, she knew how to control, "a good anxiety" as she used to think.

In her rush to grab the bags with gifts for the "children", Luz barely saw where she was stepping, and that day, she had put on knee-high boots she had bought a few days earlier. With all the packages and bags, ventures through the streets covered with untreated trees and bushes, sidewalk with a patina created by the years of neglect and never seeing snow, and without realizing it, stumbles, slips, falls, and hits her head on the ground aggressively.


Luz opens her eyes and can't understand anything about her surroundings. She sees everything white around her, lying on a bed, connected with tubes to her arm, and can barely lift her head because it feels incredibly heavy.

She can see a huge window in front of her and the sunlight streaming in, blinding her eyes. She closes her eyes again and feels herself floating and feeling, at least she knew what that was, anxiety, and becoming very restless.

A nurse came to adjust the dosage of the intravenous substance to which Luz was connected, ran her hand on her forehead, and said, "Calm down my dear, everything is fine, your family has been notified and is on their way."

Luz only really calmed down with the nurse's kindness because at that moment, she couldn't match any images to any words the nurse said.

Luz doesn't know that she lay unconscious on the ground at her parents' doorstep for several hours until around 5 a.m. when a man walking his dog noticed the silhouette of gift wraps and an unconscious person on the ground. He called emergency services, and they took her to the hospital.

The family didn't notice Luz's absence. They all thought Luz had decided not to show up. And they spent Christmas night without Luz.

Because that's what Luz is to them.

December 20, 2023 01:47

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Paromita De
01:29 Dec 21, 2023

Such a profound message within this story!


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Kristi Gott
23:19 Dec 20, 2023

What an incredible story! I feel strongly for poor, generous Luz, as she battles and copes. This is the second of your stories I have read. You are such a gifted and insightful writer!


Joana Sério
00:14 Dec 21, 2023

Thanks Kristi! Thanks for your words! Have a wonderful Christmas!


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