Santa had come. He always came. But this Christmas was the Christmas I think of whenever Christmas comes to my mind. It’s the Christmas filled with the pinacle of childhood innocence and Christmas Magic.
I remember waking up and walking into the living room where music was playing. Not just any music, but Snow White music! A 45 from the Disney movie played on my new phonograph — precisely timed for my entrance. Hi — Ho — Hi — Ho! Across the room on an end table was a Cinderella watch. Under the tree more presents awaited, including a Mousetrap game. My stocking over flowed with small gifts and candy.
This was one of the last Christmases I was too young to go to Midnight Mass with my mother and so we celebrated like ‘normal’ people. As I got older, my mother would take me to mass with her. Santa would come while we were at church and there I would be at two am on Christmas morning opening presents. By the time other kids were just waking up to Santa, I was long done and napping on the couch.
But this Christmas was full of wonder and awe.
I still don’t know quite how it was all arranged, but as I said in earlier posts — my mother rocked Christmas. She was Christmas at our house. And when I had my kids, this was the Christmas I always remembered from my own childhood. The Most Magic One that I wanted them to experience. The excitement of Christmas morning and Santa’s arrival. The gasp and surprise of seeing the fruits of his late night visit. The joy of receiving gifts you didn’t even really know you had wanted but cherished right from the moment you got them. The happiness and security of being surrounded by a family who loved you so much you could feel it. Physically feel their love.
As I’ve written about my Christmas memories in this series, it strikes me over and over — Christmas isn’t really about the gifts, is it? Its about this. The memories we make on this very special holiday. Those are the things we cherish long after the trees are down and the cookies have been eaten.
There are perfect Christmases. They exist in our memories. Search for yours now, turn it over and over. Find the sparkly part and hold it in your heart. Take time out of your hustle and bustle and remember the love of the season and why we really do this every year.
We do it for the Magic. We do it for the Love. We do it so a little girl will carry that perfect moment of joy and awe into her adulthood, knowing she was loved. And loved well by her family. So that no matter what the Christmases that followed after brought, she could still tap into this Magic and Love every single year.
Give Love. Make Magic.