I guess I may have failed at Christmas Eve this year. I went to work at 6:30 am, said what seemed like hundreds of “Merry Christmases” and got a sugar rush from the work party…and then came home to an empty house and a presentless tree. Not really a sad story, since I’m traveling to my parents’ tomorrow, meeting up with all the gang and having a traditional nice dinner and presents before hurrying on my way to beat the Snowpocalypse that seems to be bearing down on the Midwest with unusual fury. Six or more inches of snow predicted. A white Christmas is pretty rare here, January is the time for ice and frostiness. We just might see it this year.
No, I guess my Christmas Eve failure is more that I want to chill by the fireplace (an oxymoron of a statement) and watch the A-Team on Hulu. Not Christmas-y at ALL. But I think it goes back to my childhood: watching my favorite shows and drinking hot chocolate, anticipating the arrival of the Big Day.
When you work in the business I do, the holidays aren’t as magical as they could be, since you need to keep a smiling face no matter what. However, this Christmas season has brought some great stories of the true spirit of Christmas: giving like Jesus gave (if I may borrow a phrase from the Methodist Church’s commercial). The stories:
One of our workers had her bank account hacked this week, and emptied of all but a very few dollars. She’s currently living apart from her family until they find a house in town. When some of the girls and guys heard about this, they raised around $50 in the morning meeting so she’d have the money to travel home on Christmas.
I opened a card from my uncle who always gives his nieces and nephews Christmas cash, and there was the gift “with love” and I had a few nostalgic memories of him being “Santa” at the Illinois Christmas gatherings when I was little. He’s still the same sweet and generous soul he has been all my life. In a world that’s changing so fast, I like that stability of character.
Someone gave me hours of his time recently to help with my classes, and another person wrote me a poem.
There’s more than one way to give. Time is still one of the best gifts of all.
That’s one gift I intend to give more of, myself, this year.
Have yourself a Merry Christmas!