There will be some boys who will go downstairs on Christmas day with no presents.
Maybe they’ll say hi to their mom, maybe they won’t. It’ll be a regular day. It might be snowing outside, but it won’t matter to them.
They’ll hit the power button on their computer or Xbox and wait for the game to load. They’ll play for three hours and not remember any of it. At the end of the game, they’ll say “good game” and “Merry Christmas” on voice chat. And the other boys will say it back. That will be the only one they hear that day. Their heart yearns for intimacy and a Merry Christmas from a stranger playing a video game is the only semblance that today is a holiday.
They’ll eat some dinner. Maybe his parents will say it then, trying to reach out. But he’ll ignore it or just let the words float in the air, since the damage is done. He’ll have to grow up and wait for when it’s just beyond too late to start the process of having real Christmas days with his family. And until then, he’ll keep playing video games, and as much as he likes it, he’ll wait for the day when he has an excuse not to.