I was going to decorate for Christmas today. I do it the week of Thanksgiving because that is the week I have off, not because I particularly like being decorated a month early. I got up and decided to read instead. Then I wrote, then I napped, and cooked, and did a bit of laundry, read some more…you get my drift here right? I didn’t get the house decorated. I put it off until the evening, but then I couldn’t bring myself to do it then either. Here I sit, wondering if I was being lazy or if there is something deeper going on.
Lazy is part of it for sure…I enjoyed a rainy day, they are my favorite kind when I don’t have to be out in it. Just sitting in my house, in the quiet by myself is something that is a rarity, and so I took full advantage and did nothing. But there is more to it than that. I can see it now that my day is over and sleep is not far away. Here it is- tugging on my emotions…I usually get Hannah to help me decorate. Bill and the boys could pretty much care less how things are arranged. I mean, they like the finished product, but getting it there isn’t something they think about. The extent of their involvement is pulling the boxes out of the attic, (That is actually a pretty big part of the job.) and helping pick out the tree. No, if things are going to look beautiful and festive it has been up to me and Hannah to pull it off. Now it is up to me.
This didn’t cross my mind until tonight. I was thinking of how I can never remember where the snowmen go and which nativity goes where. You would think I could remember these things, but I have always had Hannah’s memory to rely on since mine got foggy from chemo years ago. I would think if the synapses were going to begin firing again they would have started connecting by now. To no avail, so I use my fall back plan…have someone else do the remembering and the arranging. Only my someone else is in the air on her way to Africa. I am on my own, and somehow that feels sad. I already know that my Christmas things will not all be in the ‘right’ spots. It’s just not the same without her. We both love Christmas. We put on our favorite songs of the season and go to work. We can knock out all the decorating in a few hours, and it always puts me in the holiday mood.
I know it may seem silly to sit here wasting time instead of diving into the boxes of decor, and I know Christmas will come even though I feel like I have to manage on my own. It will still be beautiful and sentimental for me, even though she will spend it with children orphaned by AIDS in Swaziland, and I will spend it here with family and friends. We will each be in our proper places and in reality, my Christmas is not getting smaller, it is multiplying…broadening out to the world. Sure I will miss her laughter around the fire, and her help with package wrapping, and her hands with making food, but Christmas is about sharing is it not? So my gift this year is to share her with the world…happily.