Christmas memories

The tree is up.

Four small words…………...they do not do justice to the tsunami of emotion raised by opening that plastic tub filled with ornaments.  Our tree is quite simple, no tinsel, no garland, just ornaments.  A person unfamiliar with us might even think the tree lacking, or unfinished.  To view it they might think we had been called away urgently and the tree had been left for later.

 But, you see to those of us within this circle we call our family it looks like so much more.
To us,  those few that have invested memories hanging on this tree, they know better than that.  They know this tree holds memories from long ago and far away.

                               Australia                                                                   Florence

                                                       Our beloved Monhegan


                            Scotland                                                                               Bermuda

                                  England                                                            The Big Easy

                                       and one from every Caribbean island we have ventured to.

The dearest ornaments of all, those that are equal in value to the Dead Sea Scrolls, are the ones from long past, those made by small hands that are now grown and gone.  These ornaments hold the dearest memories of all.  The mere touch of one of these treasures can transport us back in time, a brief glimpse of who we once were.

This Christmas tree  for us is not merely a spot to place presents under but a  measuring stick of our lives, a journal, a chronicle of all the passing events gathered together each year  and lit with twinkly lights.  Each ornament taken from the box is a memory held in our hand.  Decorating our tree is a chance to remember, revisit, and look back on just how wonderful our lives really are.

Perhaps this one small ornament can help you understand the power of which I speak.  My first job as a nurse was in an acute care unit in a nursing home.  For Christmas that year all the nurses and aids received an ornament with this message on it.  "As this sparkles on your tree once a year think of me"  Merry Christmas Ada

Ada was a woman dying of breast cancer.   That was almost 20 years ago.  The wonderful part is this, I do think of Ada every year, I see her face, I remember her kind heart, she is alive in my memories and my heart.  That is a very powerful thing.

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