Holiday in Solitude: Embracing Solo Christmas

(Adobe Stock: Di Studio)

By Mariela Angella Oladive

In a world often abuzz with festive gatherings, the prospect of spending Christmas alone might seem unconventional, even daunting.

But for some, it might be an unavoidable circumstance, like Nonoy, a 35-year-old call center agent in one of the BPO companies in the city, who has experienced working on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in the past.

“Wala man ko mahimo kay nataboan nga may duty ako, kanugon man kon absenan ko. Besides, yadi pa ang double pay (I cannot do anything about it. It just so happened that I will be on duty. It would be a waste if I am absent. Besides, I need the double pay),” Nonoy said in an interview with Daily Guardian, as he highlighted the challenges of his profession where reporting to work during holidays is common.

How do they celebrate Christmas at work?

After talking to the last customer as Christmas is upon them, they would have a quick break and greet each other.

“Okay lang, pwede man ako ka bawi after sang Christmas,” he said when asked whether it’s fine for him to celebrate Christmas away from family.

Celebrating Christmas with family has been a tradition in the Philippines. But for some, celebrating the holiday alone may be a choice, driven not only by personal preferences but also by work obligations that have become increasingly prevalent in certain industries.

Unhurried and free from the constraints of external expectations, I, for one, have experienced spending Christmas alone. I can’t recall the number of Christmases that have passed where I spent the day alone, confined within the four walls of my boarding house, but I’m certain it’s been more than once. Despite my mother’s urging for me to come home, emphasizing that the occasion is meant for family gatherings, I have consistently insisted on celebrating it on my own.


Celebrating Christmas alone offers a rare opportunity for introspection. In the solitude, one can reflect on the year gone by, count blessings, and cultivate gratitude.

It becomes a personal pilgrimage, a chance to appreciate the journey and acknowledge the triumphs and challenges that have shaped the path. On the other hand, it may be a chance to have personal space, to breathe from suffocating circumstances, to grieve even for just a day that one cannot lament on normal days.


A quiet Christmas offers the chance to indulge in personal pleasures—whether it’s reading a favorite book, enjoying a leisurely bath, or savoring a meticulously prepared meal. It’s a time to cater to one’s own well-being and relish the simple joys that often go unnoticed amidst the festive season.

For the artistically inclined, a solo Christmas becomes an opportunity for creative expression. Whether it’s composing music, painting, or crafting, the solitude provides the mental space to unleash untapped creativity and bring to life one’s unique and unfiltered visions.

Not necessarily an isolation

In a digital world, spending Christmas alone does not necessarily equate to isolation. Virtual platforms like social media bridge the physical gap, allowing for heartwarming exchanges with loved ones, despite long geographical distances. This is especially true for those who are working abroad, separated from their families due to economic necessities.

In solitude, the true essence of Christmas reveals itself—the gift of presence. Stripped of external distractions, one can be fully present in the moment, appreciating the stillness, and the warmth of a cozy space, even in the absence of twinkling lights outside. It’s a celebration of the self, marked by inner peace.

Spending Christmas alone isn’t a departure from the festive spirit; rather, it’s a unique celebration that unfolds in the quiet corners.

While spending alone for some may be because of the burdens of life, the idea of spending Christmas alone is not bad. In solitude, there is a joy that emanates from self-discovery, gratitude, and the freedom to craft a celebration that is a unique individual experience. It’s a solo symphony of joy.