Normally I love Christmas and look forward the holiday kickoff, first Thanksgiving, then my birthday, then straight into Holly Jolly mode. This year, for a number of reasons, I’m struggling with it. They are all very valid reasons, no random unexplained departure from the norm, but still. . .I’m decidedly Grinchy.
We (I) refused to even acknowledge the impending holiday until the tenth, when we pulled ourselves (me) out of the doldrums enough to decorate the Christmas tree.
‘Cause, you know – we have a kid.
Let’s not let a little parental angst create lifelong memories of barren, Grinch stripped walls.
Quinn was thrilled, although that little exercise in family bonding made me think of Lizzie Borden. And Lorena Bobbit.
And that was it. For the next six days my holiday cheer consisted of me glaring at the white stringed lights on the tree and eating half of the little chocolates in Quinn’s Advent calendar.
NO! Of course I didn’t bust into my kid’s holiday treat. HE busted them out, scarfing down 9 of the little candies in no particular order. I just finished them. What sort of lunatic do you think I am?
Then came Saturday, when it I suddenly found myself thrust headlong into
There was no escaping it.
Crazy morning of Kitchen Catastrophic during which Quinn and I battled futilely against the horrific demons of candy making – Chocolate Seizer. Kid Sneezer. Scarfer the Dog. Idiotically Clumsy Mama also made an appearance, as did the Since When Are We Out of That Monster.
Four hours, straight into the red and green toilet.
Then it was off to the school holiday concert, then home to grab the babysitter for our one time marathon shopping spree.
Before the last of the snot covered peanut butter cups hit the trash, I wanted out.
But it was the very first time Quinn would be in a school production. Stepping Stones Montessori’s Holiday Presentation.
I? Showed up in jeans. The other parents? Did not.
But we shall not dwell on that minor failure.
Nor will we focus on the between-song moments when our little angel trapped the hands of the applauding little girl to his right, because the audience was supposed to clap, not her.
We also fairly well avoided claiming him as ours when he struck the random Macho Man poses.
As a Montessori school the musical selections were eclectic – a cultural exploration of winter holidays. Christmas songs, of course, but also Pagan songs, and songs from Hanukkah, Kwanza, Eid were played – in English, French, Spanish and Sign Language. Traditional, modern, up tempo and down, kids on stage swaying gently to the music like a stage full of little Whos down in Whoville.
Then came the Kingston Trio. The selection was a jazzy little folk song called Last Month of the Year.
The school sped it up a bit from this version, and our little Who abandoned the gentle sway of his classmates to bust a move. Arms up, he rocked out to this with abandon, delighting in the listing of the months, turning himself around like he was doing the Christmas Hokey-Pokey.
There were some chuckles and some head shaking. And we couldn’t help but smile.
That’s right. That’s our kid. The one exhibiting so much joy that he can’t keep it inside.
And I nearly cried, hearing those little pings snap as the band around my heart stretched and snapped and my heart swelled back up to its normal size.
This is what matters.
There hasn’t been a whole lot of that in our house this year, but Quinn has kept that fire burning. I guess it’s time I settled in to warm myself.