Hey, buddy. I've been thinking about our childhood holidays a lot lately. This is pretty normal, considering here I am looking Christmas in the face. But this is the first year I can't pester you with a jillion questions.

Do you remember the Christmas where you cried because you thought that you were only getting socks and underwear? Your face when they actually brought out the rest of the presents was priceless. Do you remember sitting out on the sun porch freezing our asses off to watch Christmas cartoons (or any cartoons) because we didn't get cable and that was where the VCR lived? Do you remember the year that Mom bought you a chinchilla? Or the year you and Amanda got ferrets? Do you remember our first Christmas without Mom, how incredibly delicate we all were?

That's what this year feels like. Like I'm made of glass and might shatter if a soft breeze blows by. Everything feels crusted over with a thick gray film that sucks the life out of, well, life. It's like living in a fog and I can't even see the people who are walking with me.

I hung Mom's Christmas bells today. It was weird to hear them playing and not have anyone else who knew what they'd play next like you or Amanda would (I don't blame her for not being here with sad me and the dogs. Who can say no to an 8 year old who asks you to spend Christmas with her?). This Christmas is just weird, and I'm honestly looking forward to Christmas being over. The damn holiday has been hanging over my head basically since the day you died. When we went suit shopping for you, we had to push Christmas clothes aside to find your pajama pants. Your slippers came out of a stack of Christmas crap. I miss you, dude, and it's turning me into the Grinch.

Wherever you are, even though you forgot and I often forgot to show it, I hope you know that I love you.