Tuesday, December 7, 2010
By Pam Young
I was at Michael's (the craft store) in the late afternoon when I heard a conversation in the next isle between a mother and her six-year-old child.
"Oh, Mama, look at this!"
"I love this!!"
"I have one don't I!!!"
"You made it for me didn't you Mama!!!!"
As I listened to the excitement and love for her mother in the child's voice and the drone of her mother's responses, tears welled up in my eyes. I thought about how many times I'd done the same thing with my children when they were young. After all, I had a centerpiece to make, a decoration for the coffee table to think about, colors to consider, people to impress and not enough time! At that moment in Michael's I would have given anything to go back to just one time in the isle of a store, hear my child's voice and not miss what was really happening. Love, joy adoration. The stuff of Christmas!
My kids are grown now and I'll never again hear their little bell voices exclaiming their joy over something. That time is gone forever.
I had to get to the next isle and see the child! With tears streaming down my cheeks, I peeked around the corner and looked at the small girl's happy little face. She had a dress on and her hair was dark brown in shoulder-length curls. She was holding a Christmas stocking with a Santa Claus on it. She looked up and smiled at me. Then I looked at her mother. She was tired; I could see it in her eyes. But when she looked into mine she smiled seeing my love for her child and the moment.
I told her what had gone through my mind listening to their conversation. Her tears started to collect and she said, "Now you're making me cry." She dabbed her eye with the back of her wrist, "Thank you, I needed to hear this. I get so busy and it's easy to neglect her natural enthusiasm." I told the mother it was obvious that the child had not been neglected, because she was such a happy little girl, and that I understood how easy it was to get wrapped up in our own thoughts and miss these holy moments.
I left Michael's knowing I wanted to write about this. Your children adore you and they are like little joy dispensers, especially during this time of year. Since it is also an especially busy time for you, it can be so easy to miss those gifts of love and joy your children are eager to give to you. They are gifts that can't be wrapped up with festive paper or charged on American Express. Stay awake! This is a holy time.
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
"You know, when I was nineteen, Grandpa took me on a roller coaster.
Up, down, up, down.
Oh, what a ride!
I always wanted to go again.
You know, it was just so interesting to me that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited, and so thrilled all together!
Some didn't like it.
They went on the merry-go-round.
That just goes around.
I like the roller coaster.
You get more out of it."
-Grandma from PARENTHOOD (The Movie)
Life is like a theme park ride.
Will you chose the roller coaster
or the merry-go-round?