The Sunday before Christmas Jeff and I went to Atlanta to continue our new-ish tradition of a couple of days spent kid-free in the city. We got a room that looked out onto Centennial Park, which was all done up in lights and Christmas music drifted out from the ice-skating rink that was set up in the middle of the park. It was beautiful at night, entertaining during the day. I could have spent most of the weekend staring out the window, looking at families and couples celebrating the holidays outdoors in the freezing (literally) cold.
We ate lots of good food, had fantastic seats for the hockey game, were able to sleep at night without a baby kicking our heads, but I was very happy to come home to the children and our own little Christmas tree with a handful of presents underneath.
We had three separate Christmas celebrations, all different. We are now swimming in a sea of barbies, ponies, and tiny trucks. My mother went overboard, like she always does, and gave Jeff and I an Xbox and now I am obsessed with the Indiana Jones lego man game. I have kept Jeff up late the past couple of nights playing it, until he tells me that he HAS to go to sleep now.
As usual, I’m glad and sad that Christmas is over. The magic is gone now, the anticipation of everyone opening up the gifts I’ve gotten them is over, and I’m ready to throw out the tree to be burned so I don’t have to vacuum up needles anymore. The sweet and melancholy music is not relevant anymore.
Back when Jeff and I were just dating, before marriage and children, we had conversations of what kind of Christmases we wanted to have with our own children someday. We talked about the best parts of our Christmas celebrations as kids, what we wanted to repeat, what we wanted to start new. Yes, we wanted to go crazy with gifts for our children. Yes, we wanted to make the season a big deal. Yes, we wanted kids of our own someday who were thrilled with every moment, enchanted by the lights and the sounds, who stared wide-eyed at the bright boxes under the tree.
So it was more than fulfilling this past week to watch them have all the things we wanted for them. And very satisfying indeed when Faith opened up all her gifts, looked amazed at all she had and looked up at me, blue eyes round and serious , and said “Thank you Mommy”.