Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Christmas tidings

Are you ready for Christmas?

I never know the answer to that until it's over. Did I get the right gifts, was the food delicious, do my friends know I love them? Will it be okay that I didn't spend a thousand dollars on each child? Or even what I will spend? Will the gifts be practical or will they be laid aside soon (especially if I spent a lot for it?) Will the gifts help my children develop their talents and be enjoyable too?

This is the part of Christmas that I hate. Really hate. The worrying. The stewing. The fretting.

If the pressure wasn't on, if Santa Claus didn't exist. . . . No, I'm not a scrooge. Just a worry wart.

It's not about the money because I worried about getting just the right gift for my nephews long before I had any debts or house payments or such. I think it's that perfectionist streak getting the best of me. The thought that, "I can't do it right, so I'll have to do it perfectly." Unless my gift was the one shouted about from the housetops, it wasn't good enough.

That's where my real problem lies. Are my children underprivileged? Not on your life! They aren't spoiled either, tis true, but they get "enough". It's just that Christmastime is the only time we're expected to provide masterful gifts to everyone on the list, all at once.

So for this year, I'm going to imagine that it is enough. That they will be delighted with their gifts and that they will carry far more out of this season than what can be wrapped up in fancy paper. That's what I want most. That they learn a little more about "peace on earth, good will toward men." That they speak more kindly and help each other more. That they love life and learning. That they know we love them more than they can know but sense it anyway.

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