It's the time of year for Togetherness - the kind of Togetherness that wraps up warm against the biting wind and walks hand in hand down festive streets. It's the Togetherness that sits in front of a roaring fire as daylight fades, the Togetherness that cradles a glass of wine, that talks late into the evening, well-fed, comfortable and safe.
The year is winding down to its logical conclusion. Winding through it, through the extended TV commercials, Christmas movies and neon-lit, alcohol-fuelled merrymaking, are the signs that perhaps, in spite of all that's been, we might still allow ourselves the luxury of looking forward to what may come. There is the possibility of joy, love, pleasure, light. We might allow a sense of optimism to float to the surface as one year closes, another opens, endings and beginnings, the chance of a fresh start...
So if you have even the smallest stirrings of optimism in this prelude to Christmas, throw fuel on that fragile little flame and blaze it up into an inferno for 2012. And let some of that fuel be the idea of Togetherness - because it should be for life not just for Christmas.
And this isn't the snow white, rom-com landscape of happy movie endings. This Togetherness is much, much more than one plus one. It's about connection, unity, leaning in and listening closely, sharing a desire to create something bigger and better than all that's gone before - and to do it in every area of your life.
It means working together, collaborating, supporting each other, being an advocate, showing respect and sharing wisdom and experience with those who can truly benefit from it. It's about a sense of belonging and recognising the value of the position you hold in your many networks of friends, family and associates.
Going it alone can be tough - Togetherness means you don't have to. You can talk things through, open up, be honest about what you need and want - and let those who love you know how they can help, because they will if you tell them how. It's about allowing yourself to be held and being willing to do the same.
OK, so perhaps the season has softened my horizons a little, perhaps I still feel huge amounts of childlike pleasure at the sight of a beautifully decorated Christmas tree and perhaps, right now, I'm happy in the warm, listening to the rain outside and writing this blog for you - but I'm sure that Togetherness isn't a bad idea. I'm sure it has potential. I'm sure we all do.