This tiny fake tree reminds me of one of the most miserable times of my life - a December many years ago. So, why do I keep it? I'll explain.
I bought the tree because I wanted something festive, however small, to try to cheer myself up. I'd just broken with a long-term partner and had to move back to live with my parents. That didn't work too well, as my parents insisted on treating me like a teenager even though I was in my 40s. I didn't feel welcome in the sitting room with them, as they constantly tried to tell me what I should do with my life and where I'd gone wrong so far. This was so much not what I wanted or needed to hear that I spent most my time in my bedroom - which hadn't been my bedroom since I'd left home at 18 to go to university.
Although I bought the little tree to cheer myself up, sometimes looking at it only made me cry more. It reminded me that all I had was a tiny fake tree to call my own in terms of Christmas decorations, when for the past umpteen years I'd had my own flat and put up a large tree and lots of ornaments because I usually loved the winter holiday season.
Things got better for me - and I do like to think a little moon magic helped. Looking out of my window at the full moon, I asked the goddess to help me find love again, and a partner who was better for me than the last one. Whether it was the magic, or the moonlight, or the boogie (to paraphrase a song), by New Year's Eve I had found the love of my life. We're still together and very much in love all those years later.
However, at the moment things are a bit grim for us. My love went down with covid at the weekend and is isolating in the bedroom feeling grotty, and at the same time our central heating stopped working. I couldn't find an engineer who can come to fix it before Wednesday.
But I keep that little tree and treasure it to remind me that however bad things seem, they can get better. I now put it up as well as a big tree. I even bought tiny decorations to go on it. I'm looking at it as I type this and it helps cheer me up. It brightens my life every festive season and at the moment stops me crying when I'm worried, cold and lonely because it symbolises hope.
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