Friday, December 1, 2017

December Challenge: Day 1 - Ghost of Christmas Past

It's common during the holidays to recall memories of the past. Both happy ones and sad. It's true.  But we try to keep the happy ones close, the ones that give us pleasure and hopes for Christmases to come. We may dig through photos, watch family videos, or share stories during family gatherings. So, today I'm sharing one of those.

It was 1955 or maybe '56. I have a photo. A young girl of four or five leaning forward, hugging her rocking horse with eyes closed. She'd fallen asleep, refusing to end the magic of Christmas Eve and this special ride, even though her parents had tried to coax her to bed. The horse would be here in the morning, waiting for her, they reasoned. The girl, her eyes wide and wet with tears, cried. So, they left her to rock on that horse until she fell asleep, then carried her off to bed.

This was such a long time ago, and my memory has faded like many have. Yet I wonder what had been in that young girl's mind. Was it just the ride that gave her joy? Or was there more? The magic of Christmas still lived in her heart. Santa on his sleigh, delivering presents to girls and boys; a plate of cookies and milk left to say thank you, which she found empty next morning; the tree smelling of pine with its twinkling lights and sparkling with tinsel sitting near the window; the joyful sound of caroles; warm cookies out of the oven lathered with icing and covered with green and red sprinkles; smiles and laughter of family and friends gathering to celebrate... All those and more. Did she think of those things while she rocked on her horse? Was it part of the magic? I'd like to believe she thought this. I'd like to believe magic lives inside all children. And maybe, just maybe it can live inside everyone, young and old.

Here's to the joy! Until tomorrow...

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