THE DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS
Gift-giving, for a lot of folks, is a huge concern at Christmas time. The shopping, the agony of choice, the wrapping--anticipation by the recipient, as well as the giver--and then the moment of the big reveal.
Been there, done that. With four children--who had four more of their own--and now seven little guys in the fourth generation--I've had years of opportunities for the anticipation and the reality.
And this year I became aware of an insight into my past. When I was a teenager, a young mom, and an empty nester, I thought the idea was giving gifts to other folks. Finding the right thing for that person. Matching up the personality with the gift.
Throughout my life I came up against people like my dad, or grandparents, or in-laws, who said, "I don't want anything." Or, "You save your money for yourself." Or, nicest of all, "Your coming all this way to visit us is the best gift we could get."
I didn't really understand all that, but I tucked it away in my mental attic for later cogitation.
The time came--decades later--when I figured it out. Exciting stuff!
The best gift of all arrived--a visit from my children who live far away and whom I seldom see in person. We connect through email, snail mail, telephone, and text. But face time? Less and less often as time goes by. I cherish the times we meet, but I know each of them is living and enjoying a good life that benefits others. What parent could ask for more?
This Christmas, I get the ultimate gift--today I'll see all of my children at the same time. We'll gather at my daughter's house in Ohio, for food and visiting and gifts. But mostly visiting. All but one grandson will be there (he's in the Army, stationed in Texas), and all but one of the greatgrands. We'll stretch the walls of that house and indulge in laughter and chatter and love.
We may not all be together again for years--that doesn't dim my enjoyment of this time, this day...today is the day of the best gift I could ever get.
I hope you had a wonderful Christmas Day, and that you received special gifts that money can't buy. And I wish you a healthy, happy, and prosperous new year.