Christmas Eve is here (assuming you’re reading this on the 24th) and I’ve already received the greatest gift of all, family. Is that a cliché? I honestly don’t care because I mean it.
How fortunate are we to receive the gift of a new day filled with family 365 days per year? Even though some of those mornings come at 5:00 am after less than four hours of sleep due to tending to a fourteen-month-old that still can’t quite grasp the concept of sleeping throughout the course of the night. Or, the mornings where you’re constantly forgetting things and making multiple trips back to your home to retrieve the pair of glasses that were left on top of the refrigerator (again). I still smile when I wake up regardless of what happens after my feet hit the floor.
My family is made up of my wife, Kasey, sons Henry and Theodore, daughter Lucy, and Archie the always hungry puggle (our dog). Our house is often very loud (my apologies to our neighbors) and raising kids certainly is not easy, but we’re all in this together.
I’ve been so busy lately that the sheer act of writing this column is allowing me to take a step back and really soak the season all in. I’m lying on the loveseat in the living room, looking at our Christmas tree and remember how much this holiday meant in my house growing up. I have fond memories of watching the classic holiday films like White Christmas and It’s A Wonderful Life with my mom and brother on Christmas Eve. Later, our tradition became attending midnight mass after a dinner filled with Chinese food with my late Grandma Marge. I also had the experience that I refer to as “divorced kid Christmas,” spending a portion of the holiday traveling from one side of the family to the other only to return home tired but full of love and most importantly, family.
It truly comes full circle at thirty-six-years-old with my own family and trying to ensure my children truly understand the “reason for the season.” I hope they can see past the joy of opening presents and appreciate all that they have to truly be thankful for.
I wish you all a very Merry Christmas. I hope that you are able to spend the day with those that are the most important to you. And to those that will work on the holiday in law enforcement, fire departments, EMTs, and hospitals, thank you. Lastly, to the servicemen and women who are thousands of miles away from home, thank you for allowing us to be free to enjoy the holidays. Your efforts and service to our country are so appreciated. Please come home safely to your own family and friends. Merry Christmas to you all!