I have been scurrying madly for a couple of days, trying to “catch up” after being sick for a week. Busy busy busy! Must! Gotta! Have to! Need to!
And on top of the busy-ness, I also hit that sad point in the holiday arc where the beautiful gifts I had chosen with care look stupid and not charming and just WRONG. Because, y’know, there’s a test and I’m getting a grade and it better all be OK or something awful will happen. Like Big Gay may already have that CD and she won’t love me anymore. Or maybe Vivi doesn’t want to learn to knit any more because I dared to get excited about it. Or the book for Daddy will make him sad instead of inspired. Did Victoria say blue or blueish? Well, whichever, I’m sure this is wrong.
Then on top of the busy-ness and the WRONG and the ridiculous cough that lingers, I look over and see G reclined in front of the TV, not a care in the world. Has he tied a single bow? No. Has he written out a list for the dinner that he’ll cook Wednesday? No. Has he…well, you get the idea. He’s living his life. I’m living my life AND trying to make sure everyone else has Special Memories. Cue the music and the fake snow and the dancing reindeer!
I hit bottom, right around 11 p.m. But I’ve had a lot of therapy and knew it was just mental and kept my mouth shut about it. I finished the bows. I sorted the presents that need to go to Griffin and the ones that will stay here. I checked the piles to make sure they looked about even. I reminded myself that Carlos can’t count so he won’t know if he gets more pajamas than his sisters. I stacked the presents under the tree. And that’s when I saw….one with my name on it.
One gift in that giant pile that hadn’t been picked, paid for, or wrapped by me.
Do we ever get over the little zizzle of excitement caused by finding a present under the tree with our name on it? I hope not.
Around the holidays, it can be so tiring, being the mom.
And it can be so rich, finding a present with my name on it. With a tag someone wrote in five special colors. Wrapped up tight in a festive piece of felt. Taped SECURELY.
Oh my heart. She wrote my name on it.