It’s only three inches tall.
I found it in my drawer today.
You know the like, the one where you put things you never want to see again.
Yet, even though you don’t want to see it, you can’t bear to get rid of it either.
Feels like my life is full of a bunch of stuff like that.
It’s a snowman with a fancy top hat… he has three buttons on his belly.
The base is red and it says “Katelyn” in black letters.
The machine that made it messed up it’s face, but I don’t care.
It looks like it’s winking… a happy expression.
The body is transparent. It’s like a snow globe, filled with silver glitter.
When you turn a switch on at the bottom, a light turns on and starts changing colors. Red, green, blue.
When I was a little girl, I loved stuff like that. I still do.
It was given to me in January, a January that seems like a lifetime ago.
Maybe because it was. It was a time where I had my entire life before me, before I let it all slip through my fingers like sand in a sandstorm.
January 14th. I never forget the 14th of every month. I know I should, but I can’t.
“I brought something for you.” He said with a smile on his face.
I was surprised. I’d only managed an hour away from work for lunch, it was an ordinary day in the middle of the week.
“Sweetheart, I told you not to get anything for me. This was more than enough.” I pointed at the beautiful necklace he gave me for Christmas. “I love it, and I wear it all the time.”
“I know… but today is special.”
I smiled. He’d remembered.
“It’s not that big of a deal Luis.”
He chuckled softly, knowing that to me, it was a big deal.
“I found this and I know you’ll love it. Happy three months Katie. I love you.”
He handed me the ornament and I shrieked.
“You remembered! You remembered I love snow globes! And glitter! I’ve always wanted something like this. It’s perfect!”
He pulled me into a hug and I could smell his cologne… a scent I often still smell when my brain feels like tormenting me.
I wish I wouldn’t have given him back his shirt that he left at my house. I wish I could still smell his cologne.
As we were parting, he told me “You can put this on the tree next year… for our next Christmas together.”
That Christmas would never come.
The Christmas tree lays quiet in my attic where it belongs.
There’s nothing to celebrate this year.
Sometimes I wonder if they’ll ever be something to celebrate.
I don’t think so.
But deep down, I pray I’m wrong.
As I hold the ornament in my hands, I’m mystified.
Why can such a small object bring back the exact memory of a day I’d long buried?
Buried and forgotten to numb the pain.
It reminds me of one of the happiest times of my life… the time before everything went horribly wrong.
A time I treasure, but know I’ll never get back.
A time I could have changed the rest of my life, but failed.
I tried to drink away the pain. Ignore it. Cry it out. Fill the void with other people.
Nothing worked except forgetting.
Drowning my pain in paperwork, family problems, halfhearted hobbies I didn’t care about anyway.
But I’m not going to put the ornament back in the drawer. I refuse.
It will rest on my desk and I will look at it every day.
Because it reminds me of a time I want to remember.
Sometimes, we put the wrong things into that drawer in our life.
It’s time to start taking things out.