I’m your hideous macaroni ornament from 1st grade and I will haunt you for the rest of your life.
It’s been thirty years but I still remember the day you first crafted me. You opened a box of dried macaroni noodles in Ms. Patton’s first grade class and hand selected each uncooked noodle like a fine artisan before dipping them haphazardly in Elmer’s glue and gluing globs of them onto a wreath-shaped piece of construction paper. It was then you gave me life as a macaroni wreath-shaped holiday ornament. And at that point, it was the best work of art you ever made.
You were so proud of me. Ms. Patton set all of us macaroni wreaths aside to dry and you whispered to your classmates “that’s mine over there” out of sheer pride.
I even let you use me as a snack on the bus ride home. Sure, maybe you were too young to know eating macaroni covered in glue wasn’t healthy but that was our secret.
The day you brought me into your house was the best day of my life. You pulled me out of your Barney backpack and handed me to your Mom as she cringed and said “oh wow this is amazing”.
You went and hung me on the tree and I felt like I had a life purpose. After that, your parents grew to love me, as one of their own I imagine.
You got older, and I did too. Year by year my macaroni bits fell off. I was even chewed by a pack of hungry squirrels one summer while I waited anxiously in the ornament box in the attic. Never once did you try to repair me. Never once did you try to rescue me from destruction. Never once did you try to keep the squirrels away. The bond that we once had was gone. What the hell happened to us?
I’m just an embarrassment now. When you brought your new boyfriend over, you put me on the back of the tree, trying to hide your shoddy craftsmanship. I sobbed that whole night, which caused my painted green colors to run even more but not that you care.
You even tried to throw me out after. Heartless weasel. Good thing ol’ Mommy was there to rescue me out of the trash can and tuck me away like the prized possession I am. Don’t you know by now? I will always be with you. Year after year I will keep coming back until I’m just a tattered piece of paper with a single macaroni bit glued on hung by a thread. I was gifted eternal life the day you created me.
I’ll be on your tree when you have kids, and when your kids kids have kids and when your kid kids kids have kids, you get the idea. I will haunt you every damn Christmas for the rest of your life and there’s nothing you can do about it.