Pink Christmas Tree

Sitting here looking at our pink Christmas tree, pink branches, pink lights, filling the dark night with a soft pink glow.

I can just hear snoring from the other room.

We fought again tonight. A huge, violent, hysterical, screaming fight. Erupting suddenly, catching me by surprise. I thought we had left that behind, but there it was.

It started out innocent enough, but after a few drinks, it all fell apart. Snide remarks about the girls at the next table, then another drink, then when I watched her stagger to the ladies room I realized she was drunk, still unaware of the storm brewing, I suggested she wait a little before her next drink. She responded with a scowl and a sharp question, was I embarrassed by her?

Usually she is a sweet, loving, sappy drunk, so it is always a surprise when the mean drunk comes out. She started in again about the girls at the next table, saying they were fat and ugly. Getting louder, trying to pick a fight.

I got her out just in time. The ride home, like riding in a hurricane. She was alternately screaming, hitting me, then herself, all arms teeth and fists. Her hair wild, eyes crazed, primal screams erupting from her voice, tears of rage, finally spent she dissolved into gut wrenching sobs.

I know that she was thinking about our son and his untimely death. It was just that time of year, Christmas, when thoughts go to family.

Torturing herself with what should’ve, could’ve and never would’ve scenarios. This was the season of self recrimination and guilt. Had she just done something different, he would still be here and we would not be this fractured damaged family.

I carried her to her bed, we sleep separately now. I put her in pajamas and smoothed her hair until she fell sleep.

It generally follows the same pattern, she gets angry, rages, hits, threatens self harm. Mostly hitting herself, pulling her hair, but sometimes threatening to kill herself. I try to stop her and that usually means that, I hit her, not knowing what else to do.

Not tonight, I grasp onto that small shred of debris from the storm, with a melancholy satisfaction, that I was not provoked to violence myself. That was a first.

Eventually she wears herself out. Then the calm after the storm. So sweet, when she is coherent we talk and hold each other until the darkness leaves and just regular night remains.

Sitting here looking at the tree, I know it is all my fault. I had really fucked up, I was just me reaping the harvest I sowed shortly after our son’s death. Not only did she lose him, but me as well. I love her, but I had a problem with the ‘forsake all others’ part of my vows.

The pink tree is her way of celebrating without acknowledging the season. A pink tree is not a green tree and you can imagine that it’s not really Christmas, and that we are not really a fractured and torn family.

The tree glows; the pink provocative, intentionally erotic.

Sitting in the pink glow, I sip my beer and listen to the night die.

©The Autobiography of Mr. Perfect, 2012, written entirely on my iPhone.

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