The notion of decorating my flat for Christmas has crossed my mind a couple of times recently. It’s kind of weird: for the first time in my life, I am living in my own home, where I’m the one who gets to decide whether to put Christmas decorations up or not. While that thought feels rather empowering, it’s not as simple a decision as it sounds. When I was living with Lyn in Charlton, she had a plastic tree which was kept in the loft for the rest of the year, so it was simply a case of getting it down every December. My new place has no loft and not much storage space. More to the point, should I really decorate my home in celebration of a festival I don’t believe in? I’m a confirmed atheist, so wouldn’t decorating for Christmas be rather hypocritical? And do I really want to go and buy glitter and borbals to strew them around my home, just to take them down in a few weeks? After such a horrid year, part of me doesn’t see the point.
And yet, another part of me, the part with fond memories of growing up with dad putting a large live tree in the corner of the front room every year ready for Father Christmas to put his red-wrapped presents under; the part which also remembers decorating the tree with Lyn before watching it twinkle from the old blue sofa; that part of me says things just wouldn’t be the same if I don’t decorate for Christmas. It has been a long, dark, shitty year, ending with a Christmas like no other, but a bit of tinsel might just be what this place needs.