It seems that each Christmas is known for something different. There was the year the presents completely filled the room at my grandma’s house, the year I made every single gift by hand, the year my sister accidentally beaned Mom with the tree pruners. I thought for a moment my kids might remember this holiday as The Year the Christmas Tree Almost Killed Mom.
I lived for a couple years with just my girls. There wasn’t a man around, and I did plenty of I’m-an-independent-woman-and-I-can-do-it-all-myself stuff. I got the Christmas tree in and out of the attic, ripped up and replaced the bathroom floor, and took care of the lawn. I moved furniture and fixed the sink. Some of the things I did were challenging and satisfying. Other things might have been a little stupid.
I guess there is a little bit of that independence still in me, even though I do have a man around the house to open jars and kill spiders. I decided this evening it was time to get the Christmas tree down, and since my boyfriend was asleep, it was a job for one. What you should know about our attic is that the entryway is above the basement stairs. This means that when you are climbing the ladder into the attic, you have nothing but a downward staircase underneath you should you fall. Considering how much I hate ladders, this is nothing short of terrifying.
Getting up into the attic was not so much the challenge as coming back out of it. With the gargantuan Christmas tree box poised above me, I slowly descended the ladder, while visions of injury and concussions danced in my head. I imagined that, as the weight of the tree box hit the ladder, the whole contraption would break. The box would snap my head back as it fell, and I would crumple to the Stairway of Doom below me. My children, hearing the crash, would rush in to find the bloody carcass of their mother on the concrete floor of the basement.
Isn’t that delightful? A beautiful holiday fantasy? Fortunately, the reality is that I got the tree down just fine. I’m sitting right across the room from it, all in one piece.
Now I just have to hope the cats leave the tree in one piece.
photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net