Conquering My Christmas Tree
Thursday night, I attacked the holiday season with a vengeance. It was time to put up the (damn) tree. I simply couldn’t stare at the boxes anymore. Here’s how it went:
8:30: Decide that damn it, I’m going to put up the tree.
8:45: After getting a paper cut on packing tape while trying to get the tree out of the box (is it called a paper cut if it’s from tape? A tape cut? Either way it feels like a paper cut), take tree out of box.
9:00: Put together tree stand and start stacking tree up. Wow, this isn’t so hard after all.
9:05: Tree is stacked up. The top tier was the hardest to get on. I’m simply not tall enough people.
9:06: Feel like a bad ass because I got the tree up by myself. It should be easy from here.
9:20: After struggling for what seems like hours, I can only get the bottom tier of lights working. Reread the directions. No, I did it right. Why in the hell are the middle and top tiers of lights not working? Cannot figure it out to save my life.
9:25: Realize that it’s possible the top two tiers of lights don’t work at all. I should have checked them before I stacked the tree. First, I try to sort of maneuver the tree to its side so I can hold it with one hand, and plug in the top tier with the other. Let’s just say this was a fail that resulted in the tree completely toppling over. Common sense is not my forte.
9:27: Unstack the tree (aka start over) and plug in each tier of lights separately. Yes, they all work. They just don’t work together.
9:32: Refollow the directions and start over. Certainly I just did one simple thing wrong.
9:40: F*cking lights still do not work.
9:40: Stomp my feet and throw a tantrum like I’m five.
9:42: Call my Mom. She will make it better.
9:44: Mom can’t make it better. Obviously, because she can’t see the tree.
9:45: Tell my mom I’m considering throwing the tree off of my balcony. How good would that feel? Then I realize I’d have to go down there and get it. Turns out I’m too lazy for these types of grand displays of emotion.
9:46: Cry. Tell Mom I wish I could call my ex fiancée to put the tree together for me. I had it so good with him. He is in IT, and knows everything about everything technical or electrical or WHATEVER. I never had to do anything for myself. It feels like I’m stunted in my development as a human being from dating him for so long. When it comes to putting stuff together, anyway.
9:47: Get off the phone with my mom. Then my step dad calls, and offers to come over the next day to help with the tree. He asks me what time I get off, and I tearfully tell him I took the day off. He asks why and I tell him it’s because I’m depressed. Felt true at the moment, but in reality, I took the day off to take care of some doctor’s appointments and holiday shopping. In hindsight, I still need to tell him that I was just being overly dramatic and not to call the shrink on me.
9:50: Ignore the stupid directions (what do they know anyway?) and rig the tree to turn on. All the lights are now on, but I know I’ve done something wrong. I feel like a failure and can’t decide if I should move forward and finish the tree knowing something is incorrect about it, or wait until Chef comes over so maybe he can figure out what I’ve done wrong and fix it.
10:00: Exhausted by the ordeal. Unplug the tree. Get a bowl of ice cream. Ice cream makes everything better. Especially when it’s covered in Hard Shell.
10:05: Eat ice cream, and then proceed to fall asleep on the couch while watching a movie.
11:30: Wake up and think WTF! I gotta finish this damn tree. And no, I don’t need a man to fix it for me. Are all the lights on? Check. Maybe I didn’t follow the directions, but damn it, it works. Time to put on the ornaments.
11:51: Brand new ornaments are annoying. You have to attach the metal hangie thing to each one individually. Luckily, Chef reminded me to get those when we bought the ornaments, or I would have been screwed. Or used dental floss to hang the ornaments. I wonder if that would have worked?
12:39: Star is on top of the tree. Ornaments have been hung. I have glitter all over me, and a slight tear in my eye. Oh, and scratches all over my arms from wrestling with the tree. It looks like I’ve been attacked by a cat. But I’m proud that I put the tree up all by myself. I’ve never done that before.
Sunday, 4:00 p.m. (aka days and days later): Something is wrong with my tree. It needs color. It needs something. I run to Target and buy purple ornaments. Don’t tell turquoise, but purple is starting to give it a run for its money as my favorite color.
Sunday, 5:00 p.m.: Best friend Dawn comes over to help put up the new ornaments. And by help, I mean I put the metal hangie things on them and then direct her (from the couch) on where they go. “A little to the left. Higher. No, lower. Perfect. Wait – not perfect. A little lower. Now, that’s perfect. Here’s another. We need more color in the back.” I’m a good supervisor. Should have thought of this the other night.
Sunday, 5:30 p.m.: Tree is done. I think it’s beautiful and perfect (for me). Maybe it took days to complete, maybe I drug my feet a bit, but I’m happy with it. It’s the tree of my 25th year. The year that was nothing like I anticipated, but probably the year I grew more than I had in almost any other year of my life.
I want to express my sincere appreciation to everyone for their support on Thursday’s post about my struggle with the holiday season. I can’t say enough how much I appreciate your comments and kind words. It is because of your support that I was able to force myself to put this tree up. So, at the end of the day, this is your tree too. I hope you enjoy it.