Back in December I'd lost my nineteen and a half year old cat Meeko to renal failure. We were going to have guests with a child the next weekend and I pushed myself to make our home festive for her. I was so out of it I picked a tree I could tell wasn't super fresh, and they didn't even give it a fresh cut before putting it on the car. It was definitely my fault for not asking. At any rate, the tree was dried up within a week and shedding needles like crazy. Out of spite I refused to buy another tree. I busted out the Felco pruners, trimmed off the small branches and stripped the remaining needles by hand. Then I spray painted it white and gilded gold. It had a bit of a Nightmare Before Christmas feel to it, which works for me. It's my first year in Cali so something less cold weather felt pretty good. I ended up loving it.
So maybe do shop for a tree while distraught. You know. If you're ok with doing an insane amount of work.