Christmas Eve, all of my cousins sitting criss-cross applesauce on the basement floor, bodies covered in wrapping paper from a night of being spoiled to death. That’s just how it is in our family: we’re kids forever, even though most of us will probably marry this decade or have babies or both. I’m the youngest and I’m twenty. Still, it’s like we never aged past elementary school. I’m remembering how we’d complain every holiday, blinded by camera flashes, because our Asian moms just had to capture every small moment, every new present we’d pull from each individual gift bag to reveal, even stopping to pose us like porcelain dolls. 3, 2, 1— smile! And we’d groan through our teeth and roll our eyes at how pointless it was. Another one for the album! Didn’t we already have enough albums?
It’s the togetherness that I miss most: growing up a little more each year in a thousand different ways, yet finding each other every Christmas Eve, catching up on the couch over plates heaping with crispy egg rolls and noodles. And then Line up! Line up! It’s picture time! How we’d all look at each other and sigh loudly, because we knew that it’d take at least half an hour to get that perfect shot in front of the Christmas tree, the one that would make our mothers— and Facebook— happy.
The things I would do to be there right now— touching, cackling at the silliness of it all, eating together, no tragedy. It’s the only perfect world I still have left in my mind.
Moral of the story: there are never enough albums.