coming out of my shell

coming out of my shell

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Our first Christmas tree

We were 16 when we found each other. We were not exclusive those first few years, times being what they were. In 1970, I was in San Francisco and he in Upstate New York. We kept in touch via love letters. I took LSD one night and came to realize that he was the one I was meant to be with. Sheesh, it is a little embarrassing to write these things, but this is our truth. We were part of a generation of magical thinkers. It is only by the grace of God or the luck of the universe that we managed to stay alive and reasonably sane. Some didn't make it.

On the Winter Solstice of 1970, I left San Francisco and returned to Northern Indiana specifically to be with T. His father had recently died. He hitchhiked back "home" from the commune he was living on in Upstate New York to spend time with his mother before moving on.

We started our life together "crashing" on the living room floor of a friend's apartment. We were your average crazy hippie kids with neither resources nor life skills. The first two Christmases we did not put up a tree. Like all our friends, we went to our parents' houses for Christmas in those glory days before responsibilities and real jobs caught up with us.

That third Christmas, in 1972, we had a nine month old baby, entry level jobs, and a scruffy apartment all our own. Some kindly, concerned relative gave us an old, artificial table-top tree and we decorated it with pipe cleaners and construction paper. It was glorious, our first Christmas tree. We put it on the card table we used as a kitchen/dining room table. The presents went underneath the table. Santa came to our house for the first time that year.


I fancied myself an artist so most of the decorations are ridiculously abstract

28 comments:

  1. You must be so lucky to stay with the same one so many happy years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am unbelievably lucky for that very reason. And that's all it is really - no big secret. Just luck.

      Delete
  2. I don't know about it being just luck. There would be love and some common sense involved. And luck.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lotsa love, but not that much common sense.

      Delete
  3. Colette, it's wonderful. I think many of us remember the same beginning. For our first tree my mother gave me the ornament I made her in kindergarten. A shelled walnut, gilded and glued back together with red yarn for a hanger. It glided into the ether at the old house; just a memory now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wonder if it is stuck someplace at your old house, marking time.

      Delete
  4. A Charlie Brown tree. Seems so appropriate for your first one. I have one of those silver foil ones, my Grandmother left it to me. I love it because, A. you don't have to water it, B. it doesn't shed, and C. it give the lights extra brilliance. Hokey but cool too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Totally a Charlie Brown tree. My grandma always had one of those silver foil ones, too. I'm not a purist about what a tree should look like. Most of all, I like seeing how people express themselves when decorating for the holiday. The more unique, the better.

      Delete
  5. Beautiful post. Thank you for this today! I can hear the Beatles singing, "Love, Love, Love."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are quite welcome, and now I'm going to put the Beatles on.

      Delete
  6. Love the honesty of your story. And yes, we often just know things - whether through dreams, LSD, an aha moment - we just know. What a fine little tree!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. It was a fine little tree and it makes me smile to look at it again.

      Delete
  7. Your own unique love story. Never expected a hippie on the other side of this. Love this post to the moon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad you like it! I'm a huge fan of yours, by the way.

      Delete
  8. Lovely. You made me smile this morning. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well this makes my day! You are welcome.

      Delete
  9. Beginnings are magical in our memories. Only the good lasts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They really are magical, memories. I find as I age they become more vivid and meaningful.

      Delete
  10. Wonderful love stories like yours always make me smile.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To keep am's comment Beatle's theme alive,"All you need is love, love. Love is all you need." And money. You need money, too. Otherwise you end up with a Charlie Brown Xmas tree.

      Delete
  11. What a beautiful story. I am glowing inside. Your little tree is perfect.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Emma. It sure seemed perfect at the time.

      Delete
  12. Love this story and that tree is perfect.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Such a heartwarming story. Love the tree!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love this story. It describes the era, ambiance, and trusting soulfulness of the times. A beautiful Christmas tree remembrance. A true love story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Robin. Such a long time ago. We were innocents.

      Delete

So, whadayathink?