My mami likes to tell me about how, when I was a child, she’d have to make sure I took a break every day during the Christmas season for some “quiet time” by myself. It seems if I didn’t, the holiday hubbub would get to me and I would just start crying uncontrollably out of nowhere—for no real reason at all apart from the fact that I was just overwhelmed by all the noise and activity and people. 

Aunts, uncles, cousins (I have 18 first cousins alone) plus friends and extended family always made for extremely chaotic festivities.
I also remember how my grandmother would go for a walk all by herself every single day of her life. These walks not only kept her fit and healthy, but I believe they may have been the key to her legendary unflappable disposition.

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