Yesterday saw the trek up to my Mom's house for Thanksgiving. For the last couple of years we have gone "non-traditional" with our Thanksgiving feast so that we may enjoy our Christmas turkey without the air of "didn't we just do this?"
It was a lovely meal with my Mom, Best Guy and I, my brother, my Aunt and my Cousin. Low key, wine, good conversation, good food, good dessert. While we were up there, BG and I went through some of Mom's Christmas stuff, since we will be hosting this year and the aim is to get a tree large enough to hold more than three ornaments.
She gave us permission to take pretty much anything we wanted, but once I got down there and I was looking at my childhood in a plastic storage bin, I froze. I couldn't take anything. In the end, both Mom and BG ended up filling our grocery bag with ornaments, with me only vocalizing over things I absolutely did not want.
I remember all of those ornaments in there: some older than I am, some I distinctly remember acquiring for my Mom, and others simply coming in to the rotation as I grew up. Every single holiday memory came up and slapped me in a face with a big fat "you'll never have those amazing holidays ever again. They're gone, and by pillaging Mom's stash you are ensuring that you will never have a Christmas at your Mom's house again."
Once again, blatant mortality sucks the fun out of everything.
I am blessed in that I can look back at my childhood holidays with fondness. I know not everyone has that gift, and I appreciate it. So much of it is because as children, we only see the lights and the sparkle and the glitter. We see only the mysterious boxes of who knows what piled underneath a tree that seems far too big for the living room. We see the bounty of food and treats and for this one day no one is saying we can have only one cookie. He hear magical stories told again and again and no one ever says anything other than "it's absolutely true!"
As an adult, it is so much harder to suspend disbelief, to not look at the glitter and wonder who is going to clean it up; to look at the boxes and not wonder how long it's going to take to pay off the credit card this time; to not wonder when the hell you're going to find the time to purchase and cook a feast, much less presents for everyone. And magical stories that you know for a fact are true? Would that someone could find one for me, because the only true stories I've heard lately are about struggle, strife, manipulation, and greed.
Even through all this, I know I have much - SO much - to be thankful and grateful for. I never doubt this, not for a moment.
But the magic and wonder and mystery? Yeah, it would be nice to experience that again.
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