Each year my older sister, younger brother and yours truly come home for Thanksgiving and Christmas to rekindle our family roots, celebrate in our overly illuminated home, eat and drink too much, recount stories of our childhood and suffer uncontrollable laughing fits. Recently, my parents decided we would start a new “dining out” holiday tradition. Until we all had significant others, we would dine out at a fine restaurant for our holiday extravaganzas. It has proved a wonderful tradition. But this year my mother keeps talking about all of us inviting our significant others for the holiday season to have a traditional holiday dinner instead of dining out. She tends to look directly at me when she says this, since my older sister has a boyfriend, and my younger brother began his sophomore year of college and met the love of his life the same week. Though it is not uncommon for a 22-year-old to be single, there can be a bit of pressure when all of your siblings are bringing home their loved ones for helpings of turkey, stuffing and pie. I am therefore left to wonder what it would be like if I had someone to accompany me during holiday activities. Why is it that the holiday season tends to perpetuate our loneliness? During these times it might be tempting to contact that needy boy who keeps sending you text messages every five minutes. I am sure he would love to come for dinner! But do we really want to spend time with someone just so we don’t have to feel alone? And sure, it might be nice to be one of those couples strolling along in the shopping mall, picking potential gifts for one another. For now, though, let’s enjoy not having to be on the receiving end of an awful gift — “Really, you got me a Build-A-Bear instead of that diamond necklace?” Other than dwelling selfishly on our own problems and indulging in far too many Christmas cookies as a result, there are other things we can focus on to save us from the holiday blues (and perhaps an additional five pounds). For instance, we could try to concentrate less on ourselves and more on our families. After all, that’s what the holidays are really for; being thankful for what you do have. So whether you’re enjoying Thanksgiving dinner with your significant other or standing under the mistletoe with a martini in hand at a New Year’s party, the holidays will be whatever you decide to make them — so why not make them the best ones yet?!