Today I took down my Christmas tree. It was my first real Christmas tree that was all mine- I picked out the ornaments and the lights, I decorated it, and every night I plugged in the lights and sat in it’s glow (usually while watching television and/or answering emails). A friend actually bought the tree for me because I’d mentioned that I wanted a mini-tree to put up in the condo since I would be spending most of the month of December here. She had my name for Secret Santa at work and showed up to our Christmas party on December 11th toting a 2 1/2′ tall live tree (that’s an estimate- I didn’t actually measure it).
Full disclosure- she did text me a day or two before the party to let me know she bought the tree so I didn’t end up buying one for myself and so I’d have time to get some ornaments for it.
I decided I’d take the tree down today because it was getting very dry and I didn’t see the point in watering it again when I knew I’d have to take it down by the 30th anyways (the owners of the condo come home from their Christmas vacation on December 31st), plus the cleaning man is coming tomorrow and so I have to straighten things up as much as possible (I know, it’s completely ironic that I have to clean before the cleaning man comes, but so it goes- also, full disclosure, the owners of the condo pay the cleaning man, not me; I could never afford a cleaning man. Or this condo).
As I was removing the brightly colored shatter-resistant (a very important feature when you live with 4 cats who like to swat at anything and everything) baubles from the tree, I got to thinking about how it really was my very first adult Christmas tree. This is the third year I’ve pet-sat over the holidays and during the previous two years I didn’t even consider getting a tree. I knew I’d be spending Christmas Eve at my grandmother’s and Christmas day at my parents, ant they both have trees, so why would I need one? Especially when I’d be the only one looking at it and there’d be no gifts under it.
I think I’ve spent a good portion of my adult(?) life waiting. Waiting for the right career. Waiting for the husband and family that is surely inevitable. Was I waiting to put up a Christmas tree until I had someone to enjoy it with? Probably. And that’s just stupid. No one gets anywhere by standing still and waiting.
I think I was probably also waiting to go back to school until I had someone to support me through it. Not financially. I can take care of myself in that respect (well, I try and as I’m still eating and filling my car with gas and don’t have creditors hunting me down in the street, I feel like I’m succeeding). No, I mean to support me as in give me the encouragement I need when I’m having a shitty day and want to say “screw it, I’ll never be a writer.” Support me as in, drive me to campus/work when my car is broken down and needs to be in the shop for a couple of days. Support me as in, just saying “Hey, you’re awesome and I love you.” Well. That support isn’t coming from outside sources, so I guess I’ll have to do that, too. And I can do that. Because I am awesome.
All that to say, hey! I finished my grad school applications! Yay! Lots of exclamation points, yay!!!!!!!! I have this dreadful feeling in the pit of my stomach that I’m not going to get in, but at the same time, I feel this wonderful sense of empowerment that I actually completed the applications and sent them in. I’ll never get in without applying, after all. And if I don’t get in, oh well. I try again next year. Or I take it as a sign and get serious about trying to find an agent for Twenty-Five (I know I say that a lot, but hey 2012 is almost here and I see it as an amazing new start. Who knows what can happen?).
My friend, Jaclyn, wants to write a book, so we’ve made a pact that we are going to meet once a month for a couple of hours and just write. We won’t talk or distract each other- we’ll be holding each other accountable and making sure that we are writing something. I’ve really missed the community of writers I had back in my TNBW days, and maybe this will bring back some of the motivation I had then. I’m really looking forward to it. And Jaclyn- now that I’ve put this out into the internet/blogging universe, you know we actually have to do it.
Wow. So this is the most I’ve written on this blog in a while and I hope it’s been worth your while to read, if I even have any readers left. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! This 27 1/2 year old envisions a fabulous 2012 and a lot more, “Hey, I’m an Adult!” moments ahead. I’ll keep you posted…