As the Christmas season approaches, the hustle and bustle sometimes seems too much! But then, I take a moment to reflect back on my growing up.
I can remember asking my parents for Christmas presents that were way too expensive for them buy. My parents were not rich by any means; but they always did their best. I never recall walking away after opening presents and asking my parents why I didn’t get such and such gift. Instead, what I recall most about Christmas has very little to do with Christmas presents. What I remember most is the gathering together of multiple family members (immediate family and distant cousins). I remember playing board games that some family members would get each year. I remember the house was so full of people that when you walked to another room, you had to step over someone. You stepped over the ones playing on the floor with rolling balls, or those pushing matchbox cars. One year, I remember the putting together of a remote control helicopter and the ultimate discussion of who would get to be the first pilot. It ended up not being the child who was the recipient of the gift, but the adult who could not wait to try it out!
Our family celebrated Christmas on the evening of Christmas Eve. I remember the laughter and excited anticipation of the children for what might be in the wrapped boxes. I remember the before dinner prayer and the “long wait” for the adults to finish their meal. I remember the feeling of security and the feeling of just plain happiness and contentment.
The book by Dr. Seuss, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” holds special meaning for me:
“And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ‘till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”
What I now recognize as a Wonderful Christmas had nothing to do with the costs of the presents or how many gifts were under the tree. What memories I have come to cherish, is the love I received!
I wish you all this type of Merry Christmas!