Look, I know what you’re all going to say. Trust me, I’m fully aware it happens to the best of us. Yes, I adhere to the proper methods of candle care. Of course I tried the “Gingerbread Bliss!” I even tried the “Gingerbread Heaven” that’s on backorder at Williams Sonoma. And guess what? Despite what the seasonal candle industry would have you believe, everything is still shit for me.
Sometimes you just have to accept the limitations of candles. When you least expect it, “Icicle Bliss” might just be “Icicle Wow, I Feel Nothing.” I put too much faith in holiday candles. I trusted them. I sacrificed my last shred of blind faith to their bewitching charm and seasonal salvation. I lost myself in the scent-induced daydream of horse drawn carriages and snowflake dusted strolls with a muscular architect in a scarf. Turns out, all I’m left with is thirteen jars of winter-themed candles and…surprise! Exactly all the same problems I had before. But my apartment does smell great.
It’s not like I didn’t try, you know? No matter how straight I trimmed their wicks, creatively staggered the fragrances, or yoga-inhaled these lab-created impostors of my holiday memories, it just wasn’t enough. I was still perpetually the same shitty me. Still, wearing the same clothes that haven’t fit since I reintroduced gluten. Still living in the same shithole with eight maxed-out credit cards and four psychotic cats. Still pining over my ex while “December Pine” burns slower than my troubling metabolism.
I know I was foolish to believe that the precious aroma of baking sugar cookies might be the cure to loneliness and a staggering existential crisis. That perhaps the sweet scent of peppermint sticks could lure in the job of my dreams. Or man of my dreams. Or just a dream at this point. But candles don’t do that. All they do is force me to remember me what time of the year it is. I’d have no reason to keep track otherwise. Life is futile.
Sooner or later, I had to realize that a tub of hot evergreen wax was nothing but a quick fix for much larger issues in my life. Thankfully, I’ve gotten a bit more realistic about where I am in life: I just bought a pretty impressive faux wreath that will never die, and while I’m not going to get my hopes up, that lifetime guarantee seal has me thinking it will probably solve all or at least most of my problems.