One With My Name On It

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!

Sound familiar?

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.

A present under the tree, for me!

A present under the tree, for me!

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.

7 thoughts on “One With My Name On It

  1. Stephanie

    Thank you! I’m so glad I’m not the only one who feels this way! My hubby does so much with the cooking, I can’t complain about the division of work, but I do emphathize when it comes to people-pleasing. I used to enjoy it, but after 40 years of being a pleaser, I’m exhausted! Enjoy that sweet gift. It reminds me of when Annabel was 4 and was going to pre-k. She got off the bus the last day of school before Christmas break, and I scolded her about something (something to do with her book bag–I can’t remember what.) On Christmas morning, she gave me a wrapped mug full of candy that her bus driver had given her. I had fussed at her the very day she was setting aside that gift for me. What a sweetie–10 years later and she’s still the same. What a blessing!

  2. Michelle "The Elf"

    Really, do I need this tear so early in the morning as I am about to get my “rush” on. Well, yes, I do. Thank you. To remind me again today, not to get the “rush” on.

    For the last 12 years Christmas has been a blur – no time to do anything other than take care of customer’s needs – that’s what happens (or as my therapist would say – what I allow to happen).

    This is the first year that I have planned ahead, a little, and enjoyed myself. I even managed to get a chunk of Christmas Cards sent, not all, so if you’re a friend of mine and reading this MERRY CHRISTMAS. And as I was mailing another batch last night a friend said … AHHH last minute hustle, and I said “NO. I mean yeah, I’m mailing cards, but there’s no hustle, I’m OK if they get there for New Years.” And I really am. I personally mailed more cards this year than I have in the last 12. (Toi handled it before).

    Then Mom says I can’t come by today, because she’s expecting a UPS delivery and she doesn’t want me there when it arrives … I giggled inside. There’s something very special about it, isn’t there?

    Hugs and Merry Christmas to you and your family – thank you for sharing so much of your life with us – it makes the world more bearable, one of the greatest gifts any of us could receive. THANK YOU.

  3. christymimi

    ‘XACTLY. I have lists out the, well, you know, and Too Much Left To Do. Not to mention how the delivery gods are letting me down big-time. And this is me being way calmer at this time of year than in the past. Yes, 99% falls on the female to make Christmas abfab. I’m not organized enough to do it without brain fall-out. And yet I try. I’m not doing the big meal either: making buffalo dip (veggies, pitas), fruit kabobs, meatballs in the crockpot, banana bread, whoopie pies. Lotsa beer and wine, as the appetizer, so they’ll think meatballs are holiday manna. 🙂 Merry Christmas, Ashley, and thanks for sharing your truthiness.


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