Christmas time! The most wonderful time of the year . . . or is it?
I love Christmas! I love the decorations, the lights, the smells, everything! I like everything about Christmas. Except for last Christmas.
Mom was in the hospital, Dad was confused and my sister and I were balancing four sitters a day for about three months! It was exhausting.
This year will be different.
The tree is up, gifts are wrapped (most of them), Christmas cookies are spread out on my kitchen counter and snow is on the ground . . . in December . . . in Alabama! It must be a good sign. Right?
Mom and Dad are tucked into their quarters with only one sitter (thank goodness) and their place is decorated. There is not a square inch that does not have Christmas in it or on it. Of course, we had to do some rearranging to make Christmas happen in 215 East.
One of the sitters put every single caroller on the coffee table and every single piece of crystal on the chest. It looked like Christmas threw up in their nest!
Well, you cannot go in and simply move a few things around to neaten up the place. One thing leads to another and before you know it you are cleaning out drawers and closets and the thrill you get is exhilarating!!
We found the missing car key that a sitter lost months ago! We found shoes that had never been worn. We found tacky scratch pads that come in every Publisher’s Clearinghouse envelope. We found dust bunnies that had multiplied into small villages of dust bunnies!
The best thing we found was a warm coat. You see my mom loves coats! She seems to collect them much like some people collect figurines. This habit was manageable in their house with many many closets but not so manageable in 215.
Well it is Christmas time. A time that it is better to give than receive. Although it is a lot of fun to receive! While Daddy stared at the Christmas tree, Mom parted with coats. Nice warm coats. One coat made its way to the mother of six in my daughter’s first grade class. The mom was thrilled with the gift. A gift she had not asked for but a gift that she very much treasured. A gift that I bet she is wearing today, in Birmingham on this snowy December day.
You see, you can still find goodness and life in processions that are left untouched in our closets. Things we collect but really do not need. This coat hung forgotten amid the other coats in the closet at Brookdale. Now it has new life on the back of a mother of six. She wears it proudly and no doubt looks beautiful in her new long wool coat.
Old is not forgotten. Memories are still alive in our mind. Dad looks at the Christmas tree and remembers memories of trips he once took. He remembers packages under the tree and bikes that he put together at midnight.
Old but not forgotten. Gifts give new life to each of us. New memories to be made.
What gift will you give this Christmas season?
I’m still looking for the gift of patience. They are old but not forgotten.
It’s Christmas time, the most wonderful time of the year. . .