Thursday, December 25, 2008

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, by Kat Magendie

I'm writing this on Christmas Eve. Actually, Christmas Eve is my favorite time. Of course, as a child, Christmas Eve seemed to last forever, and I remember the sleepless nights of excitement: what was under the tree? what would I get for Christmas? will it ever GET HERE! Even when we didn't have much money, there were always gifts under the tree. We kids never felt as if there wasn't a "Christmas," for somehow our mother pulled it off, even in the leanest of times. For years I thought Christmas stockings were supposed to be paper lunch sacks with our names written in a fancy script. Inside those "stockings" were fruits, nuts, and sometimes a little candy. As the years progressed, the candy became more present. We were allowed to skip breakfast Christmas morning if we wanted to and eat whatever treats we had in those sacks. Ah. I miss those lunch sacks of goodies. I have stockings now, but they just don't feel the same.

As an adult, Christmas Eve takes on the special feelings of anticipation that differ from those as a child who wonders what she will get Christmas Day. Instead, she wonders at what she already has, and what she has given: me that is, grateful for what I have and what I have been able to give to someone else for Christmas.

Christmas Eve is that pause between. For I know once Christmas Day is here (as it is now, just as you are reading this and I will be eating a Christmas Breakfast and drinking Deep Creek Blend and opening a few gifts and smiling and wondering at others opening their gifts and imagining children's laughter...), it quickly slides away and then soon the new year is here and all the glitter and sparkle of Christmas quickly fades away, the tree begins to lose its needles, the gifts tucked away, the memories caught in snapshots of mouths wide in laughter and surprise. But don't let's go that far. Let's take this moment, this day, and stretch it out far and wide as a Smoky Mountain Sky.

On Christmas Eve, I like to stay up as late as I can, and all afternoon and into the evening I watch certain Christmas movies: Alistair Sims's "A Christmas Carol," "It's A Wonderful Life," "Miracle on 34th Street," "A Charlie Brown Christmas," and the halarious but heartwarming "Christmas Story."

When the last movie fades away, if I have been able to stay awake before a fire, tucked under a quilt on my couch, I stay there just a bit longer (and I also sneak in a gift or two into Roger's stocking - just as I used to sneak my son's gifts into his stocking and place his gifts under the tree) and just enjoy the quiet, the solitude, the last remaining moments of Christmas Eve--which most times does turn into very very early Christmas Morning.

Oh! Christmas Day! Oh! Joyous Day! Oh! Wonderful Beautiful Day!

I will snuggle in and remember Christmases that have come and gone. I will embrace the one that is here. I will not yet look ahead to the next days coming.

Christmas is here. At last, Christmas is here. Ding, Dong; Ding, Dong; Christmas bells are ringing... And so...

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas(song lyrics removed - just in case...but, you can sing it along with me....make up the words if you do not know them...)


Angie Ledbetter said...

May your Christmas joy linger long and follow you into the new year. Love to you!

Linda said...

Merry Christmas, Kat. Wishing you much peace, joy and love!

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas to you also. May the New Year be filled with book tours and carpal tunnel pain from signing books.

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas little one and may all your Christmas memories be happy ones.

Love, Mom

Patresa Hartman said...

a fire in the fire place and a quilt on the couch in your log home! that's ridiculously wonderful sounding. i imagine you surrounded by all kinds of peace, ms. kat. i hope you had a really really awesome day. you are terrific. merry christmas.

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