To mark the year that was, many folks have put up COVID-inspired Christmas trees as a way to laugh off a tough year.
This year has been quite an unforgettable one. As Christmas soon approaches, folks, frontline health workers in particular, are doing what they can in order to remember 2020 in a more positive light. One of the ways they are doing this is through "pandemic trees." In addition to decorating Christmas trees with baubles and tinsel, people are dressing up their trees with Personal Protective Equipment like masks and gloves, as well as toilet paper. According to those who have chosen to put up a pandemic tree rather than a regular one, they just needed a good laugh to ring out the year and welcome 2021, CNN reports.
Katrina Green is one of them. She is an emergency physician in Nashville, Tennessee. After a long year battling the novel Coronavirus on the frontlines, she decided to put up a pandemic-themed Christmas tree as a way to remember the year that was. "I needed a laugh after a tough year," she explained. "Laughter is the best medicine. If [I] didn't laugh about the situation, I'd either scream or cry." She also made a Christmas tree decoration in honor of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the late Supreme Court Justice. The decoration reads, "May her memory inspire a revolution."
Another proud owner of a pandemic Christmas tree is Brian Johnson, a nurse practitioner and a father to four young daughters in Boston, Massachusetts. He decorated his family's "COVID" tree with his family with masks after his oldest daughter thought it would be a good idea to "use their collection of masks as ornaments." He shared, "The kids have been so brave and resilient this year... Wearing masks, social distancing, remote learning, etc. Their spirit has been unbreakable. A Christmas tree has always been a symbol of hope, and our hope was that this little tree would bring a smile to some faces."
His family's tree did not just bring a smile to their faces, but to many more! He posted photographs of his tree on Twitter, where he wished, "Hoping these Christmas ornaments can be retired after 2020. Stay safe friends!" He believes that merry days will come once again, soon enough. Debbie Ingenito also has a pandemic tree up in her home, which she said is a representation of her family. She has children with rare medical conditions, so in the Ingenito household, one must "learn to find fun, love, and laughter in everything." She affirmed, "Even when times are tough, you can always find a way to laugh and have fun."
For others, like Moses Hoole from Grand Blanc, Michigan, a pandemic-inspired Christmas tree is a little more personal. He put up rubber gloves, toilet paper rolls, and masks on his Christmas tree as a way to honor his sister, Thabitha, a health care worker in Sri Lanka. "She is on the frontiers of the pandemic alongside millions of medical professionals all around the world," he shared. "I had COVID-19 in April and swiftly recovered. But I know people who have lost their friends and family members to the pandemic, so I wanted to honor and remember their lives too." For Hoole, this will be a quieter Christmas than usual, but he still believes it will be meaningful.