We All Will Be Together
We decorated our Christmas tree today. We have a tradition of buying an ornament whenever we visit a place. This year, we acquired ornaments from Vegas, Ireland, Scotland and London. I bought Andrea a Ruth Bader Ginsburg ornament to commemorate Andrea's time on jury duty this year and because the world needs RBG and people like her now more than ever. I began the ornament tradition many years ago, during my starter marriage. It was a tradition that my starter spouse scoffed at right up until we were separating our belongings at the end of the marriage. Untwining 13 years together.
“Can I keep the ornaments?” He asked.
I laughed and then realized he was serious.
“Fuck you very much.” I thought but simply, firmly said, “No.” No is a complete sentence. Dissent.
I didn’t want much, but I wanted those ornaments. Ornaments I’d curated from California, the Outer Banks, a garish Vegas ornament that was the perfect representation of the strip. Now, Andrea and I have been married 8 years and our tree is reflective of time we spent together in Alaska, Seattle, Prince Edward Island, Chicago. Attending Hamilton. We have ornaments that commemorate milestones – my first half marathon, graduations, our first married Christmas. Today I unwrapped the ornament of a door that has a banner across it reading “5 Parkhurst Drive”. The base of the ornament proclaims “2013”. I held it up to Andrea and made the little heart motion with my other hand – my gang symbol representative of love. Sometimes sorrow. My face crumpled and a few tears gave way.
Andrea collected me in a hug, “We don’t have to move!” She went on, patting me.
I laughed, “Andrea. This is the lesbian version of Meet me in St. Louis. It’s like the scene where Judy Garland comforts her sister Tootie about their upcoming move to New York!” Because what Andrea was saying sounded an awful lot like what Judy Garland says to Tootie, which is this:
“….Wait till you see the nice new home we're going to have, and the loads and loads of new friends we're going to make. The main thing is, Tootie, that we're all going to be together, just like we've always been. That's what really counts. We could be happy anywhere as long as we're together.”
Last night, I said to someone, “I’ve been in a bad mood this entire quarter.” Which is true. But here we are, the first day of the last month of the year. I smudged the house with Palo Santo today, trying to clear out any lingering, lousy, juju. Turkey noodle soup is simmering on the stove and the snow falling outside, permission to slow down just for a day. Permission to read. To write. To be.
"Through the years we all will be together If the fates allow Hang a shining star upon the highest bough."
-Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas