When your husband brings you coffee, a double shot of espresso, steamed milk in a tall, insulated mug every morning before he goes to work. And cleans the kitchen after making his lunch.
When your adult child & his/her SO share you traditions, help establish new ones, don’t object to spending time with your friends who have cancer and might not see another Christmas, and enjoy themselves and help create a perfect Christmas Eve for everyone involved.
When everyone loves their gifts, the Irish coffee before 10am, the apple/cranberry crisp made before the “kids” woke up, when you find evidence that they wrapped & stuffed stockings after you went to bed.
When the SO mounts the tandem and experiences fear, joy and elation in 15 miles on lovely country roads, with motorists waving us all (2 “½” bikes and the tandem) through stop signs and many “Merry Christmas!” greetings exchanged on a chilly, sunny afternoon.
When Christmas dinner is framed by the parents, augmented by the “kids” and we’re all delighted in the flavors, textures, nuances and fine wine served with the main meal.
When my pop-music Dr. Demento Christmas leanings are out-voted in favor of the King’s Singers “A Little Christmas Music,” which we’ve played multiple times (like Tchiakovsky’s “Nutcracker”) every season since the late 80’s. We never tire of it. And neither do our daughter & son.
When you see your offspring who are not spending the holiday with you carrying on the traditions their parents brought forward, and adding their own twists and flavors, and how we parents nod our heads in agreement; we’re happy to be a part of something new.
And FaceTiming with those family members who live across the continent and we all yak for nearly an hour, and you start giving them ideas for their jigsaw puzzle.
There are many moments, texts, phone calls, Facestuff pictures & exchanges, meals shared, bike rides, etc., throughout the year. We put no pressure on our daughter and son to spend their holidays with us; when they can, it’s great and fun and we’re grateful. When they can’t (our son hasn’t missed on in 29 yrs.; our daughter has missed 2 in 33 yrs.) we miss them and are thrilled that now we have technology to bring us together virtually.
When the kids were little we delighted in their love of the wonders of Christmas, and how the traditions we carried forward from our own families, as well as those we added, were so embraced and beloved. That they continue to revel in the established and make them their own is very satisfying.
It’s all of that, and loving how close we 4 are, that makes my heart filled with joy that I can hardly breathe, sometimes. I hope everyone gets to feel this kind of satisfaction, fulfillment, happiness, and peace in their lifetime.
Life is good. I’m glad I’m hear to enjoy it.