The Christmas Bauble.
The bauble was one of those trinkets that had been bought for baby’s first christmas, purple with silver writing displaying a name and a date of birth. It watched, from it’s it’s vantage point on the tree, a baby more interested in the crinkly wrapping paper and the sparkly lights. It watched the following year as trinkets were moved out of the grabbing hands of a baby learning to work.
Watched as the toddler learned to share with a new younger sibling. As the babyish roundness gave way to childlike features. It watched the first year that the child made the connection that the letters written in loopy script on the front of the bauble was their own name. Watched years pass and pre-teen siblings squabble over who gets to play on the new games console first, over who’s turn it is to pick the christmas movie.
Watched the disappointment when requests to santa for a puppy were ignored. It watched the excitement the first time there was a white christmas, and the sadness when the snow was gone by the next day. It watched a few month old puppy playing in the wrapping paper, the newest member of the family causing the most delight.
It watched from a new vantage point, from a small tree atop a desk, as a teenager pored over books and and exams. It was witness to the first tentative kiss of a nervous teenagers, and the shy exchange of presents away from the prying eyes of parents and a nosey younger sibling. The bauble was still there the following year when the first love was not.
It watched the first year the now adult brought a girlfriend home from uni for the very first time. It watched two years later from a new vantage point as the couple celebrated their first christmas together in their own home. It was a few years later when an engagement ring was on the hand that put the bauble on the tree. It was the following year when a wedding band joined the engagement ring on that same hand.
It watched as a family of three became two. Watched another child grow all the way up, move out, and then start returning year on year with a young family of their own. It watched year by year as the owner got older and frailer until one year the bauble wasn’t removed from the box at all.
The bauble stayed in the box of decorations for year after year, gathering dust, until one year a small hand reached into the box and pulled it out.
“Grandma, who’s kate?”
“She was your great-grandmother, my other Mum. Let me tell you all about her.”