Brandon and I were up until 4 am building her toy kitchen. I had a complete meltdown around 3:30. I turned into Delirious Christmas Bitch (it was bound to happen) and after some choice words were exchanged, I ended up calling Brandon a fucking idiot as I slammed a piece of the kitchen into place. Then I had to run after him (“That’s it, I’m going to bed, whatever, I don’t even care”) and apologize for turning into such an asshole. Because that’s what Christmas is all about, right? FAMILY.
I dreaded this Christmas like I’ve dreaded many Christmases past and I put on a semi-happy face and went through the motions of putting up the tree, buying the presents, wrapping the gifts, cooking the food. My internal dialogue was void of any real emotion except cynicism, but I smiled and faked it through the 20-some days between Thanksgiving and
Then the toy kitchen. Then three hours of sleep. Then a jiggle of the doorknob from Isobel’s room and there she was in her Santa jammies, holding her blanket and her Elmo, looking at me sleepily and leaning on my shoulder like she does every morning. Something happened, something switched, and I thought to myself HOLY CRAP THIS DAY IS GOING TO BE AMAZING. I carried her down the stairs and she saw her gifts and smiled so big and I could feel all the magical, wonderful things about childhood Christmases coming back to me.
Let’s be clear. There were blips. This wasn’t a perfect Christmas because I don’t think those exist or can exist—at least not for us. But this was a healing Christmas. It was a step in the right direction. A glimmer of hope that we can redefine our family in a way that still feels good and right.
This Christmas I felt lucky and blessed to be able to give my daughter a warm house, good food and special gifts. These things are a privilege. I am grateful for them. I am also fortunate to have a husband with a short memory who could wake up and give me a hug and tell me that he loved me mere hours after I called him a fucking idiot.
Perspective is important: Important for all things really, but especially Christmas.
I hope you had a wonderful holiday. And if you didn’t, well…you’ve got about a year to prepare yourself before it happens again. A Christmas miracle! :)