Monday, December 8, 2008

Christmas Memories

The loneliness of Christmas seems so much more this year. It's not the economy; Christmas has never been a really big material thing. Sure when you have a young child of a certain age it's easy to spend more than is decent and god knows, she never wanted for stuff. Christmas when I was a kid was an ordeal -- it meant for us what it meant for so many others, i.e., more family time, but that wasn't a good thing. I have two clear Christmas memories. One is that my grandad got me for Christmas a stuffed Lassie dog out of the Sears catalog. We would get that catalog and look and dream, but we knew we weren't getting anything. Somehow he worked it so I got that dog and what a dog it was. She had long collie hair and a plastic molded face, with a mouth slightly open so it looked like she was smiling. I wish I knew what happened to that dog. I took it to college, moved into my first apt, and I slept with that dog every day - either hugging it close and curled around it or under my head like a pillow. If I could find one I'd probably buy it but if I did that, well it wouldn't be the same. I never named the dog and I never saw a Lassie movie so who knows what drew me to that dog? The other solid memory isn't quite as nice. I don't recall us decorating a tree until much later - but I guess my mom did. One year someone got the bright idea to put foil-wrapped chocolate ornaments on the tree. Keep in mind there were 4 of us and we rarely had sweets. Is it any surprise they were eaten off the tree? I don't recall that I ate any but maybe I did - I had weird food issues and was afraid to eat anything at or from home. Well my mom must have called my dad cause I remember him coming home, we're summoned into the living room, and he rages, ripping things off the tree and throwing them, breaking them, yelling, who knows what. I'll decorate if I have to, if it matters to my family, but it's hard - Christmas in general is hard - i sure never bought any foil-wrapped chocolate ornaments and I think I never will.
Funny the things that stick with you -

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