It's our third Christmas without Margot.Thirty-one Christmas eves before and three after.
My life, before her. And after.
Time shifted in March 2011. A new beginning by which all events and experiences are measured as they are remembered in my mind.
The 85' Bears. Before.
Middle School. Before.
The apartment on Euclid. Before.
Christmas Eve, 2013. After.
The Christmas Eve after she died was spent in our car, in the In N Out parking lot, eating hamburgers and listening to Judy Garland, Stella jumping from front to back, hopped up on the lethal combination of Christmas and a chocolate milkshake. There was no tree that year.
Their are four of us now, living, huddled around mattresses in the living room, listening to Judy Garland, dancing and laughing by the light of the tree. There is happiness here in the after, a trace of innocence, a steadfastness in the present.
We have muddled through, somehow.