Growing up, my mom made Christmas seem magical. Our house was like something out of a Southern Living Magazine, and she hosted parties for her Bunko group and family and friends with so much apparent ease, I thought that was something that every woman just did when she was a grown up. That it all just fell together, effortlessly.
That is a lie.
It is a lot of fucking work.
With my brother and sister living in California and my mom recovering from surgery to remove her cancerous eye, I hosted Christmas this year. For the first time, I wasn’t my normal cheery self getting ready for the holidays. The stress of dealing with my divorced in-laws and the fading health of Mister BS’s grandparents, year end duties at work, my commitment to a few too many freelance projects, and general fatigue threatened my holiday spirit.
Luckily, Mister BS was helpful. He put up the tree. Despite having made two trips to Target last year to ensure we had enough strands of all warm white lights (not the cool white) — he managed to mix them up. So as helpful as it was to have the tree up with lights on it, it gave me a headache to see the mix of warm and cool white lights.
I made him fix it.
The second time around, he had all warm white lights, but the strands didn’t quite reach to the top. So he could have added another strand on just a few branches, or could restring the entire tree, and redistribute the extra lights.
But I am not that much of a bitch.
We left it. I decorated the tree, with the nutcracker ornaments I’ve been collecting and my mom’s favorite Waterford ornaments. The old red poinsettia flowers and gold laced ribbon and fancy beaded trim.
I couldn’t find the beautiful, snowy, white fur tree skirt and we had to go buy a cheap fake velvet one from Michael’s.
In the end, it didn’t matter.
We did our obligatory visit to the grandma’s and the in-laws, and then my family came over. We had good food and lots of laughs and even played Yahtzee.
And it was wonderful.
Mom wanted this lumberjack themed family photo, so we were all wearing plaid (she even found that axe in our garage?) and even though Maddy’s Nathan is freakishly tall, we sort of all fit in the photo.
We definitely fit together.
We are family.
And that’s what Christmas is all about.
Hope you had a wonderful holiday season!