I missed being a Christmas gift for my parents by a mere three weeks, but at least I was responsible for my mother losing some weight before the big day. Hey thoughtful me I even came in the morning so I wouldn’t interfere with her lunch!
My first born began announcing his arrival very early on Christmas morning. I always told him it wasn’t my fault. He was due on the 19th of December. The present he got that year was the gift of life. The present I got was assuming the role of a mother.
I have been around for a lot of Christmas events. In all that time I really don’t remember anything I really set my mind to that I wanted for a gift. Whatever I got was just fine. Growing up our family didn’t have a whole lot of money, but we never seemed to lack anything important like food. My mother spent a lot of hours making gifts with her trusty sewing machine. Her creations for me and my dolls were one of a kind.
I remember a Christmas when I was in high school. I had a part time job and decided to save up my money to buy my family a special gift. At the time we lived in a rather ratty apartment above my grandfather’s second hand store. It wasn’t a place I comfortably brought friends to. The gift I bought was a whole set of pastel plastic dishes. Dishes are dishes and I couldn’t afford china! That was also the year I decided it was better to give than to receive. I have no idea what my gifts were.
I think that Christmas set the tone for a path I would take in my adult life. I have always found it difficult to receive and only recently have begun to accept the fact that I am worth every single thing that the universe has in store for me. Oh don’t get me wrong, I still give because it makes me happy, but I now also accept not only at Christmas, but all year long.
In closing I would like to share a poem I wrote several years ago for a Christmas telethon for St. Vincent de Paul. It expresses the simple fact that love is the best gift you can give or receive. Isn’t that why God became man?
If you could have one gift for Christmas
tell me what would it be someone asked.
Seriously pondering the question awhile,
the gift I choose wouldn’t be under the tree.
What I really want for Christmas
I told the person who had asked me
is the most precious treasured gift of all;
LOVE, pure and simple and completely free.