I was so glad to see another prompt
I wrote this the day after Christmas and have been meaning to go back and edit. It feels really scattered to me, really disjointed. After going back and reading it though, for the most part I am okay with that - it is how the situation feels, so I think I am okay with it reading as such. The last paragraph though really needs some help - I feel like it doesn't connect at all; it seems like an afterthrought (which really, it was). And yet, if I take it out the whold thing seems to be missing something - like there is no "end". What do you think? Should I take it out? At any rate, I'd love feedback of any type: technical, clarity, praying to the writing gods, or needin’-some-lovin’. Thanks
We pleaded for days to get a tree, worried that Santa would skip our house without one. Target sold them for $10 each on Christmas Eve, not like "those damn tree lots" who were "too expensive and out to make an Almighty Buck". We circled those trees in the Target parking lot three or four times, determined to get the perfect one. Eventually, Dad tired of our conversation and said to just pick one or he would. We quickly settled on one about five feet tall - it had holes in it and was the perfect Charlie Brown tree. It listed to one side and the top was broken; it would be hard to get the angel to stay on the top of the tree that year.
The younger kids danced around the beat up blue station wagon while Mom and I hefted our tree on the roof and tied it down. Their excitement wasn't contagious though; Dad sat in the car grumbling about the price of trees, consumerism, and the "God awful noise" the kids were making. Once home he went in his room and shut the door. Mom and the kids braved the corners of the garage and somehow managed to extract a box of Christmas decorations from the shadows. I stood over the stove, in my own world, heating apple cider with cloves and cinnamon sticks and trying to focus on the warmth it would bring. Christmas was supposed to be about love, family, and time spent together. Why did it feel so empty?
Years later when my own babe was born I promised him that would never happen to his Christmas. He could be a child and revel in the excitement as long as he would. Merriment around a car while hoisting a tree above one's head would be encouraged, three times around a tree lot would be optional. I'd keep him away from grinches and scrooges complaining about the price of trees so loudly that other families left without a tree.
We don't celebrate Christmas now like when I was younger. There was no tree in our home this year and few presents. We shared cider with cloves and cinnamon sticks though, that tradition is one that I hope he'll remember and carry on when he is grown. I hope that Christmas for him will be a time to gather with loved ones, not a time to try and outdo each other by the gifting of expensive useless gifts. As we create new traditions for our family and continue those we loved in childhood, we remember loved ones who have gone before us. We ache for days past and to be able to hold those now out of reach. We strive to be fully present in this life now. We dream of the days and years to come, and hope the traditions we create will have meaning for our son.