Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Why I Still Love the Christmas Tree

It's mid-January and our Christmas tree still stands in our living room. The lights still twinkle among the naked branches. The angel perched on top now hangs to the side. It's Chris's job too tear down the tree, but long hours in the ER have left him bleary-eyed with little energy to tackle anything else.

Truth be told, I don't mind that the tree still stands. I'm the sort that never really tires of the Christmas tree. I truly wouldn't mind if come April we were hiding Easter eggs among the branches.

Why I love the Christmas tree, even now, hit me when we took all four boys to a furniture store (a harrowing, not recommended, experience). My blood pressure rose as I ensured little boys didn't dirty pristine furniture or shatter breakable knick knacks. Just as I was starting to sweat, a grey-haired gentleman approached our crew. He smiled and announced he was one of nine brothers. With a twinkle in his eye, he said, "We had crazy times, but the Christmases were the best. They were truly wonderful." His expression softened and I imagined he was reflecting back on happy memories of the Christmas trees of his youth.

That's why I love the Christmas tree. It transports me back to those Christmas Day memories of four little boys darting down the stairs, gazing wide-eyed at a sparkling tree brimming with presents. Then watching as the scenery changes around the tree; the room fills with torn wrapping paper, discarded boxes, unwrapped goodies. Four little giddy boys sit in the shadows of the tree, their smiles sparkling as brightly as the tree.

I know it's time for the Christmas tree to hibernate.

I keep reminding myself the magic of the tree remains whether I see it or not.

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