Tis over. The rush and the crush of the Christmas season has come and gone. The presents have been unwrapped and the paper and bows strewn around the room beneath beloved tannenbaum by tiny little hands that now rip at colorful packaging. The day is done, the wrapping scooped and shoveled into the trash.
Now what? From what I've read around the wonderful world of the Facebook, many are ripping all the decorations down. "Time to put is all away." "I want my house back." "I can't stand the mess." Somehow, I just can't fathom this. Although this was not how I was raised, it is more than just tradition for me. Now, being a good Catholic boy raised by the good Sisters, there is a proper time to take down the saggin, wilting tree. (Ours is fake, but gorgeous, and we don't suffer the needle problem). No, the only proper time to take down our beloved Christmas tree is on the sixth of January when the Wise Men found the Christ child.
Religious notions aside, taking down the tree and packing all the decorations away is a sad time for me. The front side of Christmas is all hustle and bustle. Everyone is running around doing the shopping and decorating. There isn't time to sit and enjoy what you have done or to enjoy the spirit of the season. Christmas is the last gasp to hang onto something before the cold and dreary winter season blankets the world. I like to hang onto the dark green tree covered with shiny globes and white lights as long as I can.
I sit here this night, the day after, knowing for me that Christmas is not over. For me, Christmas is not just a day, or even an event. It is a feeling that lasts longer than a notch on a calendar. My Beloved and I sit in the soft, twinkling glow of our tree and relax, putting the hectic pre-holiday behind us. This next week of lights and decorations is my Christmas. But, I guess you'd expect that from an old retail guy.