(written on November 6, 2011)
this may be early to post this, but none the less. halloween has come and gone and we have christmas to look forward to. plus i spent today listening to christmas music and watching the classic "rudolph the red nosed reindeer". it was my daughter's first time watching it. i had to fight very hard not to break down and sob through the entire movie. the magic of christmas lies in our children's eyes. watching her live inside the film and reacting to the story is so priceless.
i know many parents now-a-days who refuse to lie to their children. they don't tell them about santa clause. they don't have our traditional fairy tale christmas. i salute them and respect their decision. i even think it's a great idea in some ways. but i choose a different path. i don't feel like i am ruining my daughter's childhood, creating lies to hurt her or teaching her that lying is okay by telling her santa clause is real. my mother told me santa clause was real and i believed her. when i found out santa wasn't real, i did my best to hold on to the magic every year, but i never looked at my mother like a monster. i wished to hold on to the spark and joy and believe again.
i'm struggling. with various opinions from the people i love concerning this very touchy topic. christmas. in my house, that word is taboo. christmas for us is hard. we don't have our little girl every year. some people tell me i'm not fighting hard enough for her, but i know in my heart she should have an equal experience with her father and mother during the holiday. it would be selfish for me to hoard her, especially during such a magical time. i pride myself on being fair, for her sake.
does it kill me? of course. but i react on an explosive basis. it probably won't upset me until i stub my toe or i can't find my bank card--but once i start crying, all my frustrations tumble out. and you can bet then a part of me will be crying because i won't be sharing christmas eve with the one girl i love the most in this entire world.
but the day of the year doesn't matter.
we don't care what day easter falls on... or any other holiday for that matter--those days are subject to change. sure, it may sting that other families are celebrating on this day, but behind closed doors--who knows who is truly happy? the media can display a wonderful image of the world coming together happily on one day of the year, but in reality, how many of us are truly happy? the world holds it's dark secrets as those of us celebrate--there are those who are hungry, those who are cold, those who are lonely, those who are struggling to stay together and those who are unhappy. those of us who are on the other side of this pain shouldn't get down because our loved ones can't be with us. i have an entire year in which i spend days and days with the ones i love. they are safe. they are alive and healthy. thank god.
if anything, christmas should be a day in which we make a commitment to our families for the next coming year--a commitment of quality time, conversation and connection. a commit to love and cherish the moments we are together. not of anything else material. i may have my little girl this christmas, and i may not have her the next. some people spend christmas alone. but i cherish the days that my family are with me. and for that, i will smile on christmas. i will thank God for having them in life. because my family is everything to me and i am blessed to have them in my life.
i love you jeff. i love you baby girl. i love you mom and dad (both of you). i love my sisters. and i love my brothers.