Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold,
everything is softer and more beautiful.
– Norman Vincent Peale
When I say that last year I wasn’t in the Christmas spirit, I mean I really, really was not in the Christmas spirit. If I could’ve had a conversation with the Grinch last year, he would’ve felt bad and baked gingerbread men for me.
I don’t really know why I wasn’t in the mood to celebrate, but Christmas songs made me cringe, I was sick of Christmas lights and do not get me started on the masses of people in the stores. I could rattle off the rest of my laundry list of things that robbed me of my holiday joy last year, but I won’t. *cough, cough* THE TRAFFIC…
Oh, how things can change in the course of a year. Our tree has been up since Thanksgiving (last year it didn’t make it up until a few days before Christmas), I’ve enjoyed shopping for family and friends, I’m even planning on doing some festive holiday baking. I hope this post finds you in much the same good spirit.
A question was posed recently at work: Is it better to be a kid at Christmas or an adult? The debate that ensued was rather interesting.
One of the first reasons someone claimed in favor of being an adult was the ability to drink alcohol. They pretty much all agreed that drinking may very well be essential to getting through the holidays with family and in-laws.
Then, someone argued that kids get the best stuff. This was highly disputed by most everyone, right before we had the compulsory discussion of what gifts looked like when we were kids versus what kids these days
take for granted get. Believe it or not, that segued into a rather nasty little discussion about Santa… I don’t have the stomach to relive it.
Seeing as I am insanely introverted, I participated in the discussion mostly silently, but it did really get me thinking. And my conclusion is… drumroll please… (preferably like the Little Drummer Boy)
Christmas is better as an adult.
I don’t have kids, but I do have nieces and nephews and I am around plenty of kids all the time and it is so much fa-la-la-la-ing fun to watch them as they experience the magic of Christmas.
Apart from watching my bank account dwindle, I also really love Christmas shopping for my family and friends. For me, making the holidays special for people is far better than getting anything under the tree… and if I’m being honest, even the kids who are raised that it is better to give than to receive don’t truly learn that lesson until they become adults.
Which brings me to my last point:
Even though I channeled Scrooge last year, I still bought toys for kids I didn’t even know. I do it every year. Some years I can afford more than others, but I always do something. This is my number one reason for preferring Christmas as an adult.
This year, between myself and a loved one, a little girl (who I know), will not wake up to emptiness under her tree. She was recently abandoned, thrown out to family members she barely knows because… well, the because doesn’t matter… I see this child nearly every day. When she sees the pile of gifts waiting for her under the tree it doesn’t matter to me one iota if she believes they are from Santa, her deadbeat parents, or a stranger. She will have an amazing Christmas.
There is still time to make Christmas special for a kid who desperately needs a little holiday cheer. I challenge you: Strive to make a child’s Christmas sparkle. Make a difference. Too many children wake up every day wondering why they aren’t loved. Be the magic that soften’s their world if only for a day and give them a reason to smile. It’ll cost far less than you might imagine and feel far better than I could ever express.