It has become a bit of a tradition for me to write a piece about Christmas on Christmas Eve. I am usually found keeping myself awake, awaiting the arrival of my daughters and their families for an overnight before the grand opening of gifts in the morning. This year is just a bit changed in that my younger daughter and her significant other, Eli, can’t get here until tomorrow morning. None the less, we will be graced shortly with the arrival of my older daughter, her husband and our two grandchildren. Adela at not quite two isn’t old enough to believe in or not believe in Santa but Jackson is another story. At nearing five, he is testing the existence of Santa by carefully analyzing the items left in his stocking and the wrapping on his Santa gifts. We thus have to be very carefully in our scheming to keep the myth in tact.
Of course, you must understand that I still believe in Santa, or at least what the jolly old man represents. It is the mystery of Christmas that can only be seen in the eyes of small children. The anticipation of weeks of waiting to see if they will in fact get the gift they had told Santa they wanted. Jackson will not be disappointed as we have plotted against him with extreme precision. We were all tasked to find out what it was he was secretly asking Santa for and we have performed with the precision of a team of Navy Seals. His Santa gifts will be there cleverly disguised from his other gifts and for at least one more year he will hold the thrill of Santa and Christmas in his heart.
We all know that eventually the Santa belief gives way to the reality of where those gifts came from but until then we believe. It is only once we stop believing that it becomes important to realize what the gift giving is all about. You see the secret of Christmas is to give it away. Give away the love in your heart. Give away the spirit of Christmas to everyone you meet. Give yourself away at Christmas. The material gifts and the idea of Santa are just representations of the gift of giving. Jackson actually said it best the other day when he told Mimi, “I know why you got me lots of gifts. You like seeing my smile when I open them.”
I hope that this Christmas you have enjoyed all three aspects. I hope that you had someone to play Santa for. That you got the gifts you wanted and that above all you found a way to give back. If you did, then this truly was a Merry Christmas.
My Christmas wish for you is that the blessedness and spirit of Christmas stays with you the whole year through.
Merry Christmas, 2018.