In our house, however, Gisele is a christmas tree. I bought her years ago…on sale. No one wanted her. Can you believe that? She was eight feet fall, thin and lithe. She wasn’t wearing a Victoria’s Secret Miracle Bra much to my husband’s chagrin but rather green leafy polyvinyl chloride from top to bottom. Perhaps that’s why she was passed over. People tend to expect so much from a super-model christmas tree.
She fit neatly in one corner of the living room, occupied little space. Super-model christmas trees are rarely obtrusive. They require little care, not even water.
But it is time for a change.
Alas, after eight years of stuffing her in a box, she has become unwieldy. Dare I say…out of shape? Her delicate arms so flexible in her early years have become rusty and arthritic. Gone are her perky branches so taught and alert, replaced by the sag of age and inevitable gravity. Her green has dulled, her shine and luster long gone.
It makes me sad to retire her but I must.
I manhandle her down from the garage pantry, her box torn and dusty. A lone spider peeks out from its winter nest, sees what’s happening, abandons ship, skitters across the floor in search of another host. How soon they forget!
Gisele will go to another now. A family who will care for her in her aging years. I, however, must move forward. Return to my roots. Rekindle the joys of past seasons. I have so missed watching my dog suck down the tree water as if it’s some kind of canine fountain of youth, wadding the folksy tree skirt into a tangle of damp velvet. Ornaments crashing to the ground. Oh, how I’ve longed for the pine needles and droplets of sap that stick to the bottom of everyone’s shoes and coat every last, m-effing square of tile in my entire house. The memories come flooding back now like a long overdue tsunami.
I am overwhelmed with joy.
Yes, it’s true. The REAL tree makes a triumphant return to our family home this season. Just in time for the arrival of the pilgrims and their offspring.
I am sorry, Gisele. Truly sorry.
With time….you’ll understand.