Oh Christmas Tree | Life is Good
These are the moments I soaked up as a child and allowed myself to day dream about what they might include with my own family one day. In my own young days we’d bundle up and arrive at a tree lot anxious to look through each tree, push one another deep into the bins creating us to burst with laughter because it was funny and a connection. These were moments where I was acutely aware that bonds were being formed, life long memories were being handed to us to savor for our lifetimes. We would spend so long deliberating and sometimes one of us would be sour because we hated the tree chosen. But after mom would dress the once “ugly” tree in lights, oh how we loved her. Every time. And then grandmothers ornaments to hang on her branches, the stories our trees would tell. History, ancestry and love up close and the most beautiful sight from afar.
I have honored these traditions during my single years and I drug Justin along while newly pregnant 2 Christmas’ ago. Last year, all three of use went but Amos was cold and it was FREEZING outside and we hustled. This year we went the convenient route and picked up a $50 tree from Whole Foods, on our way home from the airport, without something cute to wear and not in an adorable tree lot… BUT… I love these moments. They represent the ability to be adaptable, to not be so attached to the way something should go for traditions sake that you miss out on being present and ooooh, they’re so filled with joy. My heart feels most complete when Amos and Justin are in adoration of one another, when they’re caught in their one another’s giggles. A lot of the things Justin does are strictly to make me happy and I know that deep down, which I wrestle through sometimes, but when I see him light up because Amos thinks it’s fun during the errand or adventure I “dragged” him to, that’s when I feel the fullness of the choices I’ve made and the ones I get to love. I’m so happy to get to celebrate such a fun holiday with a sweet young boy and a really loving man. I’m thankful that this year I remembered to plug the lights in before I strung them around the tree. I’m delighted that Amos was able to join in the age old tradition of hanging ornaments on our tree and I’m thankful that our tree looks super ridiculous because not enough of the base was trimmed off. For me, it represents a little piece of the imperfections of life, even when everything else above it is doing it’s best to be as pretty as it can, our tree actually looks insane. I’m loving that this year the vines of pine branches from Trader Joes weren’t as perfect as years in the past because this year, more than others, life is less than perfect. It’s messy and complicated, yet as it unfolds there is such beauty in the mess. There is beauty in the chaos and there is beauty in the hard. While this season can be sad for many by way of loss or absence of the ones they care about or because they’re far from home or it feels different than it has the occasions that have helped to shape their expectations, I’m opening my eyes to all of the good that’s mixed in with the grit and I’m clinging to it. Every little second.
Christmas, I don’t wish for you to pass, I wish that we would lean into the one who we’re celebrating in this season and know that while there is much joy intended to surround Christmas Jesus was sent because of our brokenness and he’s our strength in weakness. And this is what is good. Cheers to you this season.