It’s January 16, 2011 and yes, my Christmas tree is STILL up. Yes, I know...It’s the middle of January and my tree is still up.
It’s an artificial tree but the emotions derived from its presence are anything but.
It was my first white tree, much like a blank canvas, I suppose that is the spark that started it all in the first place. The creative soul in me just had to have it; so up it went, the lights, like the sparkling stars in a beautiful night’s sky, the shiny bulbs reflecting the light and all the little extras that made it “just right”.
Now I know the tree has become the symbol of the Christmas season, the birth of Christ, the good in mankind, the hope for better days. My question to you is … “why stop there?”…just because the calendar says so? …No, not for me. I like the way it makes me feel and I’m not ready to “take it all down and put it away in a box”; to be contained until someone deems it proper to bring out again.
It’s become more than a “Christmas tree” to me this year. It’s a reminder to celebrate, to reflect, and to take a moment to enjoy the glow.
Listen, life can be hard, this simple little tree is a big reminder that I am not alone in life’s struggles, in its twists and turns and unexpected moments.
Whatever you believe…in God, the Universe, in Mother Earth, the knowing, and the blind faith that something, someone much bigger than us can help us through is of great comfort to me.
Right now, it’s not a Christmas tree, it’s become my “Celebration tree”, it’s been there while we brought in the New Year, and it will still be up throughout the month of January as we celebrate both of my lovely daughters’ birthdays. Perhaps, I’ll hang Valentines and cupids on it in February or President’s Day momentos my little one makes at school. We’ll have shamrocks and leprechuans in March along with spring flowers and Easter eggs as we go into April.
Maybe, just maybe, we’ll celebrate the most random or “everyday” things, like finishing all the homework or getting dinner on the table on time and no one complaining, or even rejoice in the fact that the dog didn’t steal a piece of chicken from anyone’s plate.
Who says that the calendar has to dictate what, when and how I choose to celebrate, acknowledge and experience the moments in MY life …in my family’s life.
No, it’s “not normal”, it’s not conventional, but then again, anyone who REALLY knows me knows how I struggle with the whole “fitting into the norm” thing…who wants that? A world full of all the same, no quirky differences; So there it is, that simple little tree in the corner shining bright in the darkness of the room, the flood of emotions that fill me as I gaze upon it…the peace, the glowing lights, the sheer joy brings forth hope, excitement and anticipation of a new day--- a new beginning.
The great reminder of how I felt all those years ago, as a small child on Christmas morning. I want that--- I need that… to greet each day with the same hopes and excitement as a child greets the long awaited Christmas morning.
So there my tree stands, to remind me of my Blessings, to remind me to greet each day with joy and eagerness, to be open to what God lays before me, to rejoice in whatever brings a smile to my face, to fully experience this life of mine, to take the good with the bad, ride the highs and hang tight through the lows.
So I sit here in the room enjoying the glowing lights on this tree—our “Celebration tree” , with a renewed spirit and determination to enjoy the life I’ve been given, be who I am, have the fearlessness and wonder of a child--- ready to do more than merely exist, to experience and be engaged in the moments of my life.
Yes, it’s January 16, 2011 and my tree is still up.