Our Christmas Eve this year, in our new home, was spent with our kids, their significant others, the fuzzy child, and the grandchild. It was awesome to see everyone and have the chance to eat, hang out, and open gifts. One child plus the fuzzy one will be here tomorrow morning, as well, so it won’t be just us alone this year. With her graduating this coming spring, this may be the last Christmas morning we spend with a kid at home for Santa. Of course, there is always the fuzzy child.
Tonight was something magical for me. I realized that, in all of my adult life, I have never truly been this happy and content with my world. My home is settled. My job is wonderful, even if it is scary at times being a new attorney. My family is settled. My dog child loves me. My man child has grown up and is facing his future head on. Our world has just finally settled.
We sat together tonight, Sweetie and I, and we watched The Polar Express for the first time. It’s about believing in Santa, but for me, I think it’s also about believing in myself. I did something afterward that I haven’t done in several years. I ran out of glitter, so I used glass seed beads instead. I’m sure it will be just as magical. Trying to recapture some of the magic you have as a child at Christmas isn’t easy, but glitter in a moonlit yard goes a long way.
When I was a child, we celebrated Christmas at my Mamaw’s house. Everyone would come over, and we would eat, hang out, and open gifts. I saw my aunts and uncles get engaged one year. I got my first period at the celebration one year (true story). I got a rabbit coat from Santa himself one year, while he was riding up to the dock on a boat. Everything I knew about Christmas I learned from going to her house.
When she passed away, I visited her gravesite every Christmas for many years. It was the only time I would go to the town where she is buried, so it was my way of somehow reconnecting to and holding onto those magical Christmas Eve memories. My son was little. We had a tradition of sprinkling glitter in our yard so that Santa would know to stop at our house. I decided that Mamaw needed Santa, too, so I started sprinkling glitter on her gravesite. I loved how it glowed and wrinkles in the night.
Tonight, many years later, I live in a place where the moonlight is just as vivid as it is where her remains lie. I spread those seed beads in my yard tonight, in her honor, and to let Santa know to stop this way. After all, we still believe. And, you see, I miss her most this evening of the year, this year and always. I believe I can feel her spirit around me, holding my hand and helping me clear life’s oh so many hurdles. She lives on in me.
I wish you all the most joyous of Christmas Eve, this year and in the future. Enjoy it with the ones you love.