I am typing this by the light of my Christmas tree, with about a quarter of a butter tart sitting on the couch arm next to me. The other three-quarters of the tart are safely ensconced in my tummy.
It is a surprising thing that I have a tree this year. To put a positive spin on Christmas, I might say that I took the opportunity to consider what Christmas traditions I liked and how I wanted to interact with Christmas.
To be more honest, my biggest problem was, and had been for months, what I was going to do for Christmas Day. I’ll put in a big PSA at this point. If you know someone whose circumstances changed over 2017 – they got divorced, they moved, someone died, they lost friends, would you please consider providing them a plate at your Christmas dinner? There is nothing so terrible as realizing that you are going to spend Christmas alone.
I thought about it hard. I did the baking because I love giving it away. I like the opportunity to thank my neighbours for being great neighbours. I did the festival of lessons and carols, which I used to do with my mum, because I love the feeling of history and connection it gives me.
I stood in line at the bookstore and they had Christmas Cards on sale. I couldn’t be fussed to get cards with a photo, but I managed a greeting card and a Christmas letter, in part because I liked the letter part. More than that, I like getting cards from people and giving them seems to increase the likelihood of getting them.
The tree came about differently.
I like staring at the lights. I like sitting with a coffee, with a butter tart and losing myself in the lights. I found myself, on Saturday, almost without thought, pulling up the tree, putting out some ornaments. Digging through the many boxes which can allow me to vomit Christmas over my entire house, finding enough to make the place look festive inside and out.
My present, which arrived in the mail from Ms. Fab is sitting under the tree.
I am staring at the lights.
And suddenly, Christmas is here.