What did Santa bring you?
This might be the first Christmas in my life where his visit brought me tears. I don’t blame the big guy – he’s really got nothing to do with it. He didn’t set his elves to build them in his shop, pack them in his bag, or stow them on his sleigh. Santa is like a magnifying glass for all things joyful and when that joy is lost, he magnifies its absence as well.
I’m sitting here in our den alone at 7 am, drinking my coffee and watching the sun peek through the trees. This could have never happened before. Any other year, I would have been up for over an hour, yawning and probably scratching my backside after staying up well into the night assembling toys and applying stickers. For the past eighteen or so Christmases, there has been too much excitement bubbling and brewing to sleep this late. The girls always sent a messenger to our bedroom to let us know that they were awake, a fact that couldn’t slip past us as we listened to feet on stairs and a chorus of giggles. The presents in our den would be covered in bedsheets so prying little eyes wouldn’t see what Santa brought. Nice of him to keep that tradition today even though all I hear from their rooms is snoring.
When I got out here this morning, there were two stockings up: Mom’s and Kylie’s. I filled Mom’s and set it with the others, leaving just one. We have been entertained over the past few days by watching videos of Christmases past. On one, there was a point in the morning carnage where one of the girls noticed a stocking that hadn’t been touched and Daddy Santa had one of those “oh crap” moments before he admitted that he forgot. Mommy Santa didn’t forget. She never forgets.
I am sad that my children are past the Santa age. This change was inevitable, but we had a year or two stolen from us. I love the Christmas morning energy, excitement, and wonder. That is just fun, unbridled joy. We could certainly use more of that.
I am also sad that Kylie’s stocking is still hung by the chimney with care.
It is not full. It is as empty as her room, her chair, and that chamber of my heart where she used to reside. She will not be dancing up our stairs from the basement where she slept with her sisters on Christmas Eve. I won’t get to see her wide smile and starlit gaze. I miss her so much right now that I’m just about ready to push Santa’s fat butt up the chimney with his cookie-stained beard and magnifying glass….
… or maybe I should go wake up the troops and see if we can find a smile that will soak up a couple of the tears that the fat elf brought. It is nearly 8 now and I figure there’s got to be some joy around here somewhere. I think this year, we might have to search for it.
Merry Christmas from Portsong!
May you all find joy, even if you have to look high and low for it.
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Updated 9:16 am – I woke them up – joy found.