My Christmas tree is up and decorated. I love it. My tree is one of my most favorite parts of Christmas. I love ornaments - always have. I've made it a practice to purchase one new ornament each year. That's on top of ones that are given to me. So if you do the math, I have quite the collection, and it's very eclectic. But each one is special to me and as I place it on the tree, I remember where it came from and if it was a gift, I reflect on who gave it to me.
One regret I have when it comes to decorating my tree is that I pretty well do it by myself. It's not that I mind doing it myself. In fact, I enjoy my time alone with the tree. What I regret is my family feeling like they can't help. And it's my fault they feel this way. It's a mistake I wish I could go back and do differently.
Since decorating my tree has always been a passion [and a little bit of an obsession], I didn't let my kids do too much ornament hanging when they were younger. GASP! I know... I'm a terrible mother. I didn't realize what I was doing until it was too late. It wasn't until they were older that they started making comments like, "we don't put ornaments on because mom will just move them anyways," or "the tree has to be perfect."
Believe me, I feel very guilty and wish I hadn't been so obsessive about it. I wish I could have let go of the control and just let the kids have a good time - not worrying what the tree ended up looking like. I just didn't realize what I was doing and what kind of legacy I was leaving for my kids.
I did end up relinquishing control but it was too late. Even though I invite Dani and Jake to help me decorate, they don't really have any desire to do so. That makes me sad, but it is what it is, and there's not much I can do about it now.
So let this be a lesson to any of you who are reading this and have young kids at home. Let them join in the enjoyment of decorating the family tree. Don't worry about what it looks like. It's more important that they participate than to have that perfect tree.
And Dani and Jake - if you're reading this - I'm sorry I robbed you of the joy of the tradition of decorating the family Christmas tree. I wish I could go back and change that for the both of you.
link of the day: