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Tree is up and glittering ... I'm feeling choked

(49 Posts)
Riverwalk Thu 13-Dec-18 15:27:16

Chose the tree this morning which was delivered an hour ago. I've just dressed it with the usual, blinking lights, tat & tinsel, and baubles and ornaments that my children made many decades ago.

Why do those bits and bobs from days gone by make me so emotional? Well I know the answer really, my boys have grown; been divorced 15 years so I think what could have been although separation was 'amicable'; and sadness at the passage of time.

Those pesky tree decorations hold so many memories! tchsmile

Gonegirl Thu 13-Dec-18 15:47:01

Aww. That's sad. Bet it looks lovely though. My tree is still at the garden centre - I hope. By the time I've finished getting the lights right, and the decs on, I'm usually too knackered to feel much at all except relief.

MiniMoon Thu 13-Dec-18 17:33:12

I went for new baubles this year, but I know exactly how you feel. I get all nostalgic when I find all the decorations made so carefully at nursery and school. We all keep them though.

NanaandGrampy Thu 13-Dec-18 17:38:15

My daughter dressed our tree with the aid of the 2 littlest grandsons . I have lots of home made things and it was lovely explaining the stories behind the things.

Maybe you can look on the positive side and enjoy the memories rather than mourn the what-might-have-Beens?

M0nica Thu 13-Dec-18 17:49:00

Some of the decorations on my tree go back to my parents's childhood, others have been made by DGC and every time in between and by various friends and relatives, mostly deceased.

When decorating the tree, I just have happy memories of Christmases with my parents, especially my DF who was a Christmas enthusiast, my own DC and now DGC and all the others. There are times when nostalgia should be indulged in. Christmas is one of them.

Granny23 Thu 13-Dec-18 18:26:57

All my tree decorations hold special (happy) memories. There are some that belonged to my Mother, some the DD's & DGC made, some brought back from abroad and pride of place goes to the gorgeous one that Baggs made for each of us attending a GN meetup.

GrannyGravy13 Thu 13-Dec-18 18:27:32

Riverwalk, I cry every year, memories good, bad and sad.

janeainsworth Thu 13-Dec-18 18:37:30

The angel that has adorned our Christmas tree for the last 34 years, made by DS when he was 7.
He lives in America with his family now & although we have had Christmas over there with them, I doubt if he will have another Christmas here.
Riverwalk I hope your sadness passes soon and there is something for you to enjoy this Christmas tchsmile

lemongrove Thu 13-Dec-18 18:56:08

I have all new Christmas baubles and such for the tree, I change the look and colour of it every year, so no sentimental memories ( which is fine.)
If you enjoy that aspect then enjoy it, but if it makes you sad Riverwalk invest in some new things?

Jomarie Thu 13-Dec-18 22:41:13

Good post lemongrove

Bathsheba Thu 13-Dec-18 22:46:15

I've used the same ones, more or less, for years, adding to them now and then when I see something that takes my fancy. But mostly the same, a tree for the most part decorated with red ornaments and red tinsel. A bit of gold and white here and there.
What do you do with last year's tree decorations lemon? Do you really discard all of them each year and buy new?

Riverwalk Fri 14-Dec-18 07:25:16

I'm over the sadness now tchsmile

Lemon I do have some new baubles, including 2 small kitsch reindeers standing guard! It's just the old stuff gets me all wistful.

Thank you Jane I will have happy times over Xmas - yesterday was just indulging in maudlin thoughts!

Blue45Sapphire Fri 14-Dec-18 07:43:57

I bought a new tree this year, first Christmas since DH died; just couldn't face tackling the old one and putting up string of 160 lights, which he always dealt with. So got a smaller pre-lit one which I am very pleased with. Still using the same baubles though, they all hold memories of our married life and our children, so know what you mean.

NfkDumpling Fri 14-Dec-18 09:42:02

I felt the same when I put on the decorations inherited from my parents. I love the continuity but fill up with sadness remembering them from my childhood and the Christmas’s with my parents and grandparents. Lost loved ones and lost youth. And fortunately for me, good memories in the main. But that’s the way it should be. I’d hate (and fear) not to be able to remember.

Maggiemaybe Fri 14-Dec-18 09:57:47

I really wish I had some of my parents’ or inlaws’ old glass decorations. My mum was never a hoarder and threw hers out when she bought new, and my DBIL took MIL’s to the tip by mistake when we were clearing out her house together (I had to be restrained from dashing down there to try and get them back!). I’d put them on one side to keep, but he’s no sentimentalist, and couldn’t understand why anyone would want them. I still have the paper decorations my DC made somewhere, but don’t put them on the tree. We have a huge collection of baubles we’ve collected over the years, and they do make me feel nostalgic, but never sad.

Maggiemaybe Fri 14-Dec-18 09:59:59

Which reminds me - I’ve a half-decorated tree downstairs and visitors coming later. Up and at ‘em! smile

DanniRae Fri 14-Dec-18 10:00:47

Feeling emotional about all of the forthcoming Christmas because, God willing, my daughter is going to provide us with our first grandchild by next Christmas! tchsmile

Jane10 Fri 14-Dec-18 10:16:43

It's a pleasure every year to put up the decorations. We try to buy a Christmas decoration every time we go on holiday and as I put them on the tree it brings back memories of some lovely places we've been. Also some oldies that we've had since the children were born. Nothing tasteful or matching and all the better for that. The DGSs love to go round it looking at the various odd things and guessing where they came from.
I suspect that in years to come I'll feel nostalgic for these years so I'm concentrating on enjoying them now.
A sort of cheery 'mindfulness'?

Rosina Fri 14-Dec-18 10:29:51

Scents, memories and items from the past can so easily bring sadness and nostalgia. I found myself getting tearful for no real reason about some of the Christmas decorations a few years back - made by my children - that had become grubby and tatty. I hang on to everything my children made for me, but at that point I decided to get a grip, and ditched the old battered items. I bought some new decorations and the grandchildren were thrilled with them when they helped put them up - especially as I had bought their initials in sparkly letters for them to put on the tree. I felt happier for doing that; no one ever explains to you that your beloved tiny baby, toddler, young child will disappear from your life for ever as time passes. You still have that loved person - if you are lucky - but sometimes the carefully kept baby shoes, small 'works of art' and nostalgic items do a little more harm than good, especially at times in life when you feel fragile emotionally, and Christmas, with its inevitable echoes of the past, is doubtlessly one of the times when we can all feel tears welling for memories. I hope you have a good Christmas, Riverwalk, and perhaps knowing that you are not alone with this mysterious but common Christmas heartache will help.

Gilly1952 Fri 14-Dec-18 10:37:23

I’m such a soppy old thing and have cards from my two boys, now grown men and also cards from my late parents, going back many years. I can’t bear to throw them away and keep them in with my current Christmas stuff. I often come across little drawings and cards my boys made for me when they were little. Certain carols will set me off into floods of tears and I get choked up if I hear the Salvation Army playing carols.

EllanVannin Fri 14-Dec-18 10:38:44

I love the vintage tree decorations the delicate glass baubles, icicles, little bells etc. Lit candles !
At home my brother and I used to have our job of throwing small pieces of cotton wool over the tree ( I hated the feel/squeak of it )
There have been plenty of " old " decorations in the online charity shops this year.
The only things I like new are electrical items.

Hellsgrandad Fri 14-Dec-18 10:39:07

My wife always decorated the house and tree beautifully. but she has Alzheimers and has been living in a care home for the last six years. Now that she's no longer here I just can't face it. Don't misunderstand - I'll be having a lovely Christmas with my children but decorating the house just for me, well, it's not really worth the upset.

dragonfly46 Fri 14-Dec-18 10:51:09

For those who have not yet decorated their tree I heard it is better to hang the lights vertically as they look more even and it is easier. Not tried it myself but will do next year if I put the tree up.

ReadyMeals Fri 14-Dec-18 10:54:02

For some reason I never got round to making decorations when my kids were small, and although I did have a few things from my own childhood (originally shop-bought) the tinsel had gone toxic and the glass baubles broke and now I have only stuff I have bought relatively recently. I used to love those twirly spirals - color one side and plain the other and tried to replace them but the new versions are too light and plasticky to actually hang right.

EllanVannin Fri 14-Dec-18 10:55:33

Hellsgrandad sad as it is in your situation there are a lot of us who are on our own but we make the effort not just for ourselves but for those who'll be visiting, especially the children. If the family see that there aren't any decorations/tree they'd start to worry about your own health. even if you yourself don't think it's all worth the bother do it for old times sake and give yourself a bit of cheer.