And now it is Christmas morning and, instead of little people running excitedly into our room to tell us, will wonders never cease! Santa DID come in the night and, Mama, he ate the cookies and look he left us a note and, Papa, Santa didn't mess up the chimney at all and, Mama, hurry, hurry, hurry - instead of all that excitement, I find my peace in the quiet of the solitary living room. As always, even on regular days, I am the first one up. But this morning, I enjoy the lights on the tree, the collection of gifts, and the feeling that, just for a moment, all is good. My children are loving, responsible, and compassionate people. What better gift could I have? I have an extended family that wraps me always in their warmth and inclusiveness. I am bursting with ideas for painting and for writing and have a list of books a mile long for my reading pleasure. There is a beach relatively nearby for Christmas Eve walks and more.The new year is suggesting a trip to NYC in April, a Alaskan adventure in June, and maybe even a trip to India in the fall. Such gifts as these will be fun to open in the new year and, this morning, when the sleepyheads trundle out, we will enjoy some more concrete surprises.
Monkeys do grow up and the magic of Santa becomes a shared gift. But, still, the pleasures like Christmas Eve walks and board games, and Christmas morning hugs and oohs and ahhs remain a cornerstone of a good life. I hope I can remember that when the going gets tough in the trenches of 2012.