When did the Christmas Magic die? My memories of Christmas morning are always like in “A Christmas Story.” You know, you wake up unbelievably early considering how late you stayed up trying to hear Santa’s sleigh bells. And when you do wake up, you look out the window to find that the world is covered with a fresh powdering of Christmas snow, covering all the gray slush that was left over from the weeks old snowfall that was there last night when you got back from one of your family Christmas parties, where you were able to whoop it up with your cousins, the ones that you only see once a year at the Christmas party, while the adults sat in the living room or around the kitchen table talking about whatever it was that adults talked about. But now, the world was white again, clean and crisp, the way Christmas is supposed to be. And then you went down stairs to look at the presents around the tree, and you were the only one up because it was so early in the morning, but the tree lights were on, and they sparkled in all of their colors. The cookies and milk you left out for Santa were gone, all gone except for the crumbs. And you wished that you could have left something for the reindeer, but your Mom said that the carrots were for the family on Christmas, and so you couldn’t feed the reindeer.
But the presents! All around the tree in boxes with foil paper and bows, which had to come from Santa because Mom didn’t buy such things, because she said that they were too expensive.
And so you stood there and drank in the magic of the morning, not daring to breath because you might break the spell and it would all disappear. But it didn’t disappear even when your little brother would come barreling down the stairs breaking the quiet, but not the magic.
Where did that go? You get older and Christmas becomes a hassle. Lights on the house! Parties! Expenses! Traffic! Christmas Freakin’ Carols on the radio since October! Can’t we just not do a tree this year? We all feel like were drowning three feet from safety in three feet of water, but we can’t find our footing and we can’t reach the edge. Where does the magic go when you’ve all grown up and found that it was your Dad that ate the cookies, and drank the milk, and that your Mom does buy the expensive foil paper and bows, when the toys come from Santa.
I found it the other night at my family party in the eyes of my kids. My kids that still believe. Santa sits down, pulls my 3-year-old onto his knee, and she looked at him like a god sent down from Olympus to grant her every wish.
Maybe the magic doesn’t die… we pass it along it to our kids.
Find your magic folks…