What’s on your Christmas Wish list?
If you’re my kids, you have meticulously marked up the dozen or so holiday shopping mailer magazines and paused commercials on the DVR to show me things you “have to have” (for the life of me I can not see the appeal of a Fushigi). Sometimes it seems like our Christmas Wish lists take on the approach of “throw as much against the wall as possible and see what sticks”.
This past week, I was reminded of what I really want on my Wish List. This past week I went to a funeral. A family friend was saying goodbye to a loved one. Two weeks before the biggest holiday, a family was going to bury their mom, aunt, grandmother, sister, wife, their friend. As I walked back to my car from the service, I couldn’t stop myself from being flooded with knowing just how they will feel on Christmas day. That feeling that no matter how many presents from their lists they open, there will still be something missing. Someone missing.
Imagine what our Christmas Wish lists might look given any hope of getting back the ones we love? The iPads, LED televisons and X-Box Kinnects might take a back seat.
I’d want Santa to bring me back to my Grandmother’s kitchen. I’d want to be standing next to my grandmother while she is at her stove cooking. To hear her sing while she rolled out dough for her homemade raviolis. To have her call me one of her four hearts (Her nickname for her grandchildren. My sister and two cousins made up the other 3 parts of her heart.). And tell my mom applesauce is most certainly a vegetable in her house (I hated any vegetable that wasn’t served at Grandmom’s house.)
I’d want to ask Santa to be with my cousin hiding behind my Pop-Pop’s chair, ducking out of the way when he reached behind to grab us. I’d ask to see his smile when the two of us came around to sit on his knee. I’d want to show him that I have done everything I can to live up to the name I am so honored to share with him.
And more than anything else, I’d want Santa to bring me my dad. I’d want to hold him until my arms fell asleep. I’d want to smell his mix of aftershave and Salem Lights. I’d want to hear his laugh again. All I’d want for Christmas would be my dad.
But I know that can’t happen. I know that if I put that on my list (besides worried looks from my family members) it wouldn’t be one of the things to stick on the wall.
So this Christmas, like every Christmas, I am asking for things I know I’ll get. I’m asking to be able to enjoy the holidays with my family and friends. I’m asking to watch my kids’ faces as they open up their gifts. I want the dog not to eat the wrapping paper (I might be pushing the envelope on that one). On my Christmas Wish list this year, like every Christmas, even though I miss the people no longer with me, I’ll ask to not miss a single smile, or inhale of excitement, or one second of everyone around me on my Christmas Wish list.