I spent two hours working on a post about how hurting my shoulder led to 30 days of yoga only to come to the conclusion that 800+ words is really too long. My mother is sick, I’m just getting over being sick and we didn’t even get the same thing. I can’t keep my lips moisturized and my hands are always cold and dry. The Christmas stuff is starting to stack up. Ingredients for Russian Teacakes have been on the counter for nearly 2 weeks. The basement is a disaster area. I’m in desperate need of a haircut, as it tickles the back of my neck 24-7. I can’t stand the mess. I can’t take the disorganization. I’d rather be writing, but every time I sit down to write, it’s crap because I’m distracted by all the other stuff I want to do. Or I want done. And I want to do it all at once.
Then the dear ‘ole Daily Prompt comes up with ‘maddening.’ Well, @*#&$ off, Daily Prompt. Don’t tell this to the woman who just paperclipped her hair up. To call today ‘maddening,’ is an insult to hyperbole. ‘Frustrating’ barely touches what I’m feeling right now. ‘Aggravated’ is closer. ‘Murderous’ feels just about right.
Fine – I’ve got to do something. Something tactile. Something I can walk by and see. My mother has been pestering me to put my ornaments on the little Christmas tree in the front window – okay. We’ll do that.
Now, my ornament collection is about a dozen ornaments that are actually mine and two dozen that were fobbed off on me when my mother sorted through our own. Stuff she “wanted me to have.” Ha! Was too sentimental to throw away is more likely. If I wasn’t so much like her, they’d been in the trash years ago.
There’s a wire angel on the top of the little tree. I don’t like the wire angel. In fact, I’m not feeling angels in general this year. The angel goes back its usual table and I pop open my box of ornaments. The top layer is sparkly garlands in the shape of vines. Great. Those go on the tree. There’s green and gold glitter everywhere, the tree looks like its been attacked by an invasive species, but I’m too keyed up to care. Next level.
Crocheted angel that I’ve been using for the top of the little tree. Fine. It’s there, it goes up. Shove that branch up that little angel’s skirt. Catwoman ornament bought for me by a well meaning relative. Fine, I like Catwoman – she goes up too. Worn out Santa’s Mailbag I use as a tree skirt? It doesn’t match the cloth that covers the table, but who cares? Not me. Around it goes. Plastic nativity scene I picked up at a yard sale at age 8? Sure, who cares if I’m struggling with my religious convictions? It’s the little guy’s birthday! Set that up with the straw donkey and carved camel. Next level!
Here is the real ornament collection. Kangaroo playing basketball? Sure – I never played basketball or even like kangaroos, but my parents bought it for me to balance out the soccer playing seal ornament they got my brother. My first life lesson of: It’s Okay if Your Brother Gets Something and You Don’t. On the tree it goes. Clear plastic ballerina I got when I was a child and still taking dance lessons? Of course, I’ve always like that one, even though it’s too long to dangle from a branch and sits in the tree. Ridiculously overpriced felt and Styrofoam mushroom I bought last year? Yep, let’s clip that on next to the angel. Wooden cut out of an angel I don’t like and can’t understand how I got it? Put it up there. Garfield ornament? You bet. Mini-popgun ornament? Up there. Gingerbread men holding various cooking implements? Sure – I like ’em, even if my brother didn’t. Cardboard cutout of a dinosaur in a Victorian bathing costume and an innertube? Yes. I love that one. Ugly, starched crochet angel? On the tree. Cheap glass ball full of paper I got as part of a ‘care package’ in college? Let’s hang in front. Ornament I made at age 3, that was exactly the same as everyone else made? I don’t know why I’m still keeping it, but on the tree it goes.
Fast forward to 20 minutes later. I’m trying to find a place to hang my last ornament, a metal moose holding a Christmas wreath. I don’t care for it and it’s on a ribbon long enough to wear as a pendant, but I’m trying to find a branch up to taking its weight anyway. Why? Because sometime you just have to let it go. So what if it’s not great or pretty or right and I hate most of it – it’s done. And it’s…
…it’s somehow okay. It’s a tree and it’s mine and that’s kinda nice.