Last Sunday was our annual trip to the local DIY store to purchase our Christmas tree. To begin with it was most probably not the best day to go. Half price sale on all things Christmassy. Cheap? Yes, stressful? Oh yes.
We’d had a row before we had even left home. I wanted to get there as the store opened, only to find my husband was on a major go slow and only half dressed as my daughter and I were ready to go.
We drove to the store in silence which, quite frankly was a relief as my poor head was on day three of a migraine. I gave my daughter a pep talk as we went in stating we were not there to spend lots of money. We didn’t need any more decorations, and yes she can have a small tree for her room…. . My first really big mistake.
The doors to the store opened and my daughter’s good behaviour went straight out the window. I asked my husband to go the outside area and pick out a tree. I had armed him with instructions, price, height, type so there should have been no problem.
I went off to find my daughter who was mid rummage in a huge pile of tinsel. I should point out at this point that my child is five and a half, although she appears to think she is fifteen going on twenty five.
We went off to hunt for a tree for her room. This all started because her friend was having one and had been boasting about it all week at school and just to keep my daughter quiet, I had promised she could have one as well. My second really big mistake.
My mobile rang and it was my husband. He was moaning that all the trees in our price range had gone and I was needed to find a suitable replacement. Dragging my sulking daughter to the outside I found him grim faced.
His first words were why bother with a tree? it is too expensive the needles fall off and we don’t have the room. Of course all of these things are true; however, the one big thing he failed to realise was that was the whole point of having the tree. We eventually settled on a nice looking one not to tall, quite bushy, plenty of places to hang the decorations when suddenly, my daughter comes across a tree she desperately needs for her room. It is much bigger than her friend’s she says, well yes it was, and it was seven foot tall! I told her that there was no way she could have it as her room was too small. Well that just did it. She is not really prone to tantrums in public but boy did she make up for it! She burst into tears hit me then her father screaming that she hated us all, she wouldn’t have any then, she hated Christmas and we have all ruined it for her.
Oh Joy. In my best calming voice I tried to explain again why she could not have it, which was just met with more screaming and yells of ‘go away I hate you. ’
Bearing in mind my poor head felt like it was going to explode, I dragged her back into the store. I took her to the artificial tree section. Still sobbing she refused to like any of them apart from the biggest and the most expensive even in the sale.
At this point I am afraid to say I lost it. I made it quite clear that it was a SMALL real tree or nothing. This was of course met with more anguish, screaming and hitting. I told her and her father to go back outside and don’t come back until a small tree was found.
In the meantime, I was wondering around the decorations and stopped to look at some on offer. The next thing I know, a man with a child in a wheelchair screams obscenities at me for blocking his way. Speechless I turned around, finding my voice, pointed out if he went the other side of the Christmas tree his path was unblocked. This was met with yet more obscenities and various hand gestures. Still utterly shocked at this outburst I pointed out maybe, a touch too loudly that contrary to what he thought I was not deliberately blocking his way, I was actually looking at the decorations. With that he glared at me swore and left.
At this point I was ready to weep. Then my daughter comes bounding over with a small living tree in a pot. She was all smiles again babbling on about how sweet this tree was and how it will grow for ever and it was just what she wanted – not ten minutes ago it wasn’t I thought. Anyway it was sorted, we had everything we needed
We stood in the queue that snaked around the store and with pounding head, sulking husband but at least a smiley child that yes, Christmas was indeed here again.
Merry Christmas to you all