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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UPR chapter.

If there is anything I dread more than being single on Valentine’s Day, it’s being single during Christmastime. As if having one holiday devoted to hearts and couples isn’t enough, the disease that is being “in love” or in a relationship has to somehow also spread to the Christmas season. The very thought of it makes me flinch: yes, I’m talking about the social outings with couples in matching pajamas, labeling themselves as official in family appearances, and the ever cheesy (yet seemingly mandatory) picture by the Christmas tree.

Being single can be hard enough all year; but finding yourself alone under the mistletoe can be quite disheartening. While all Mariah Carey ever wanted for Christmas was someone, I honestly strive for the break of the ever-iconic-yet-annoying-yearly questioning of where my boy/girlfriend is in every family event, as if they got lost or hit by a bus (which at this point, if that is the reason love has not arrived, I wouldn’t be surprised). 

While in the past two years I have been single by choice, I’ll admit that I had a different expectation this year. Although I’m not sure I would’ve brought someone home, because the event is too much of an official thing I’m not ready for, I don’t deny that having someone special to share the festivities with would be nice. However, Christmas is a celebration that’s typically focused on spending time with family, spreading the holiday cheer and drinking loads of eggnog…So, when did having a relationship become a requirement to have fun during the season? 

In recent years, being single during the Holidays is seen as a hoax. Specifically now that I’m an adult, every year that I don’t come home with someone holding my hand I’m seen with pity and despair; as if I’m wasting my best years because I’m not searching or wanting a relationship hard enough. However, does my year measure in the value of my professional, emotional and personal success or in bringing someone home for the family to see? Tia, it’s not like I’m not trying. 

Although I was crushing hard last Christmas, I’m not proud to say that I am during this year, as well. However, it is on a different person, so I’ll call that progress. However, as the song goes: this year, to save me from tears, I’ll give it (my heart) to someone special. That someone special is me. Single or not, Christmas is a time for celebration and saying goodbye to a year, which in my case has been very good. Finishing this rollercoaster of a year is something I’m proud of doing alone. I don’t need anyone by my side to guarantee my happiness and success during the year that passed (and neither do you, for that matter).

It’s about time we break the stereotype that being single, specifically during festivities, is a bad thing. I’m proud of where I stand; especially because of how much I have progressed and achieved on my own, without any romantic distraction. Yes, the idea of cuddling with someone under the mistletoe sounds greatー,and even more so, the notion of sharing the season with someone outside of family to call your own. However, dwelling on things you don’t have around this season won’t make them come any sooner. Also, feeling sad because you don’t have them could make you miss sight of what you do have: family, friends, a new year to look forward to, and so much more.

While I found myself asking Santa to not make me fall in love again this year, I fear the North Pole did not receive the memo on time. While I am feeling the Christmas spirit all around, I’m mainly just trying to play it cool. It is hard to focus when I know I’m spinning around the Christmas tree hoping he is somewhere under there (or under me). While being in love and alone might sound like a bad eggnog mix, I’ve decided to avoid every mistletoe until I know it’s true love. However, it is especially hard as I try to deck the halls trying to forget about my feelings and enjoy the festivities.  

While it might sound cheesy, as I look back at all the heartache, pain, and struggles, I also take a wide look at the growth I’ve had this year. Despite where I am today or tomorrow, I’m insanely proud of where I was, where I am now, and even more so where I’m going. As I finish another year single, I’m also ending a year full of personal, professional, and emotional success. I close a chapter where I went from not even being willing to talk about relationships, to even opening up to the possibility of one. I might not have gotten the ideal reward at the end of the year, but my Creative Director office and dream job I got are much, much, MUCH better than any indecisive man who happens to be nerdy and pretty. 

As a year ends and a new one arrives, I remain in touch with myself and everything I want to achieve. The weather outside is frightful, but the fire in me is so delightful. Come snow or some blizzard, I’m ready to face every obstacle dressed as men or women that come my way. For now, I get to tell my family members that yes, I might be single, but being a creative director is much cooler than any relationship. However, if you want to read this, baby… please come home, or at least hurry down the chimney… 

José is majoring in Public Relations and Advertising. This communication undergraduate student from the UPR Río Piedras campus is an energetic Pisces with a passion for fashion, coming of age films, books, crossfit, and dance. Currently, José is a writer for HerCampus and the editorial executive and digital content creator for fashion magazine Imagen and lifestyle magazine BuenaVida.