As a child I vividly recall the restless nights of Christmas Eve as my mind raced at a million miles an hour. It was during those very moments that Santa was magically making his rounds throughout the world, depositing gifts upon children and families. Like most children I was overwhelmed with anticipation of the gifts I would be opening in just a few short hours.
As a child I didn’t question the logistics of how one individual Santa could physically achieve such an impossible task. I simply believed in the magic of Christmas and the proof that lie waiting under our Christmas tree when I crept down the stairs at 4 or 5:00am on Christmas morning.
I don’t remember the specific age when the magic of Santa was transformed into the reality that my parents are the deliverers of presents. I wasn’t disappointed that my parents were summoned by Santa to be part-time elves because Santa was very busy and needed their help. My parents were very convincing that were I not to believe that they worked for Santa; I may not receive any presents. After all, one has to believe to receive gifts. It was during these early teenage years that the value of Jesus’ birthday began to unfold in my life.
As I became an adult the true meaning of Christmas being Jesus’ birthday filled my heart and the tangible aspects hold little or no value. However, as an adult it can sometimes be very easy for Christmas to become burdensome as I navigate stores and parking lots with not so friendly patrons.
I find it sad that Christmas has been amplified as a tangible holiday to mainstream America, and that every year people are injured and even die in their attempt to take advantage of holiday shopping specials. The magic of Christmas can easily be overshadowed with frustration if I allow others to affect my mood and attitude, so I hold the true meaning of Christmas close to my heart and smile. I hold the true meaning of Christmas close to my heart and try to be kind to others no matter how they treat me.
In addition to opening gifts, having fun playing with toys, and trying on new clothes, Christmas has always meant a tradition when family came together. For me it meant both a Christmas Eve and Christmas Day family gathering. Brothers & sisters, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and cousins gather to share in the magic and joy of Christmas. It was always nice to see and visit with extended family members that I only saw during these special occasions, and there’s always reminiscing of the days and months leading up to the years end celebration.
Today Christmas resounds in my heart with the magical childhood memories of Santa, family, and the blessing of God’s gift that I received simply by believing. Today Christmas reminds me that I must always remain grateful.
I am grateful for the precious moments spent with family members who have passed, and I am grateful for all the people in my life.
I am grateful that I live in a wonderful city where I feel safe, and I am grateful for those who sacrifice their Christmas to make my Christmas and travels safe. Thank you to our service men and women, and thank you to the police, fireman, city workers who plow and salted the roads today, and to everyone who helps make Waukesha a wonderful place – Thank you!
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