While a white-knuckled grip is acceptable (if kept under the table or in sturdier coat pockets), clinching your eyes shut and speed-murmuring prayers out loud into a festive lot of family members is not.
More’s the pity, because I am rather good at that.
Surviving the holidays with the Ghost of Clinical Crazy hanging like an albatross around your neck is not easy, neither, alas, is it pretty… which is all to say that I am a quite terrible guest.
Do not invite me to your Christmas shindigs.
Do not set a place for me at your Christmas table.
While the spirit would be oh-so willing and ever-so jolly, the mind would be a rather nasty Grinch spreading nothing but discomfort and ill-at-ease to one and all.
Mental illness, a supposedly “silent” disease, is never so loud and outwardly damning than in the Christmas season.
Small, immovable truth, that.