Wednesday, December 26, 2012
I wonder when it will be overrated to love these winter holidays. Clocks move slower, some see frost and snow and mythical tales and magical decorations are found in nearly every home. As elementary as my age might have been, I still remember the day I turned to my mother and said in my matter-of-fact way, "There is no Santa Claus, is there?" Like any good mother she looked disappointed that she had only one child left to fool (my brother is a direct consequence of everything I would not believe), but she was honest with me in the way she stumbled over an argument of why I shouldn't rush to any conclusions. That "matter-of-fact" tone has followed me through life. What I consider a straightforward explanation comes across as sharp-tongued to a few others. However, I've often found the only people to misinterpret the way I communicate are the thin-skinned. Unfortunately for these folk, my flaws are 22 years a work-in-progress, and will require an even slower reformation.
Even though I told my mother I did not believe in Santa Claus, I still rushed to bed with my little brother and cousins each Christmas Eve--that made-for-TV hope twinkling in my eye. I think that would have been the only appropriate time I would have accepted being wrong--and I took my pride seriously back then. I remember gazing at our tree each year. My mother was very traditional: a full tree with ruby, gold and white decorations. Our Christmas tree was a classic beauty, like Rosalind Russell. Sans the tinsel, our tree could have spotlighted in any black and white Christmas film, but the greyscale and resolution would never give it justice. Many years later, my then-stepmother decorated the tree more commonly with lots of colors and sillier ornaments. I did love its style, but I missed the tradition my mother's tree always had. I knew it was Christmas when I saw the garland and ribbon. I've had the pleasure of experiencing a plethora of Christmases--each one with its own flare. This Christmas is the first holiday I have spent, in years, in a new home, new town and with a new half of the family. The tree is not as fancy as my mother's but it is classically decorated with crimson and white ornaments. Several ornaments have pictures of us and decorations representing inside jokes we have had since we all moved in together. It may not be my mother's tree, but this tree represents us. It represents togetherness; it's what we've all needed this Christmas.
As for what Trey and I might do with our future Christmas tree, I know I want royal blue and silver as the theme; I want traditional with flare; I want classic beauty; I want the tree to be filled with impulsively bought ornaments representing our interests that we collect over the years. I want the tree to represent us. I want the holidays to be merry, happy, traditional, spiritual and full of love.
For us, for you.