I love polar bears. I collect them. I actually had a polar bear Christmas tree back in my old life.
It was just a regular little 3 foot tree. My former sister-in-law had gifted me with a set of polar bear lights, knowing that I liked polar bears. I had accumulated polar bear ornaments over the years, as well. Eventually I had so many that I bought the little 3 ft. tree and put all of my polar bears on it.
As you can probably imagine it hasn’t seen the light of day since 2014 or 2015. I really couldn’t remember how much decorating we did for Christmas in 2015 because that was the year Jerry Lee was busy fucking his cousin and the kids and I headed to Indiana to spend the holidays with my family. It wouldn’t surprise me to find out I did not pull out the tree.
Regardless, every year I would put the tree, ornaments and all, right back into the wardrobe box we had. The tree fit effortlessly into it and when Christmas rolled around the following year I only had to pull it out, fluff out the branches, and maybe place a few of the ornaments that had fallen off back on.
This year I finally decided to bring it out again. We had space for it so may as well bring it out of the box and let it spread a little holiday cheer. Only…. when I pulled the tree out of the box there were no ornaments on the tree. The polar bear lights were still on, and the silver beads I used as garland were still wound around the tree branches. But no ornaments.
I even ended up hauling in my box of ornaments for my own tree and going through the entire box of them to see if I had taken the ornaments off of the tree and wrapped them up with all the others. No dice. I found the heavy polar bears I had bought years and years ago as a full set with the dates on them. But I had accumulated so many polar bear ornaments that I eventually took those off of my polar bear tree and just put them on our regular tree. There were two others in the box as well, but that was it.
I don’t recall taking the ornaments off and storing them someplace else. My daughter swears she doesn’t have her ornaments either and they should be in a box someplace. So maybe they are. I tried looking through all the boxes out in the workshop but I didn’t see them. I didn’t get through all of the bins and boxes, and I didn’t take everything out of each box, so I suppose there’s some hope there. Then again, it may be the same thing that happened with Picasso’s Christmas nutcracker collection. I think they were up in the alcove in the garage and they got left behind. That sonofabitch.
When things like this occur I often find myself cursing his name. I whisper angrily to no one, “He wanted this. He chose this. He deliberately left everything behind. I didn’t choose any of this. It was all forced upon me.”
That doesn’t really help matters, does it?
I was in a funk for a little bit, mourning the loss of all of my polar bear ornaments that I had lovingly collected over the years- many of them gifts. Truthfully, I wanted to cry. I told the mobster what had happened and he assured me that we would get all new ornaments for my tree. They would be better and “gooder”. I didn’t want better or gooder. I wanted my old ornaments. The ones I had collected for many years. The ones I hadn’t seen in five or six years because I didn’t have any place to put my damn tree.
I think part of my problem is that I really do need to be dramatic and whiny first; then I can move on and do whatever the hell it is that I have to do. I really need to purge those feelings of disappointment first. I was thinking about that when I pulled the tree out and the ornaments were not there, and when I went through the entire bin hoping against hope that they would be safely wrapped up there. There was a fork in the road and I could play this one of two ways. I could be Pollyanna and tell myself, “They’re only ornaments. This will give you a chance to buy all new ones.” Kinda like the mobster said. Or, I could cry and throw a fit and declare that no polar bear ornaments would ever match the magic of the previous, now lost, ornaments. That was the way I was headed. Let’s just throw out the damn tree and forget about it. Take the few I have, stick them in a box, and give them to Goodwill.
Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, we were planning on going shopping so I didn’t have time to properly wail and gnash my teeth. Such a damn disappointment; however, in the end the shopping trip saved me. It took my mind off of my loss and I actually ended up buying a new ornament with a small polar bear on it while I was out. It certainly doesn’t make up for the dozens of ornaments I lost but it’s a start. I guess I’m learning to be a Pollyanna. Hooray for me?