to you for christmas

Happy Christmas, girls. It’s your first time around. All year, the world has kept spinning, but you have stayed relatively still. All this spinning keeps us adults confused, but your world is calm and clear. As we celebrate our first Christmas together, I reflect on how you’ve impacted my life this year.

Girls, you have taken so much away from me. You’ve taken away many of my personal freedoms. My ability to sit around and self indulge all day. To play video games and watch movies without a care in the world. To drop everything and take a trip. To hike out deep into the woods at the drop of a hat. To sleep until noon. To forget about the world for a while. Even my ability to just roll over and die when I’m good and ready. 

Girls, you have taken so much from me, and by doing so you have given me the greatest of gifts. You’ve given me some of life’s most important lessons. You’ve taught me to focus on what I can give back to you and to others. To give the world all I’ve got. To let go of some of the things I may want and use that energy to help others get what they need.

Girls, you’ve reminded me that a gift can be simple. It can be a smile, a hug, a moment of gazing into another person’s eyes. And one of simplest and greatest of gifts is just being there for someone when they need you.

Girls, there will be a lot of trips from Santa Claus in your future. But he won’t just break into your home, eat your cookies, leave a bunch of synthetic plastic toys that you’ll soon forget about, and than move on to the next house. He’ll walk right into your welcoming arms and give you all the love he has to give. He’ll be present. He’ll be so happy to see you everyday. He will raise you to believe - to believe in yourself. And he will make sure you never lose the things you have taught him.

Girls, on Christmas morning, every morning as best I can, I will be present. And we will open up gifts from inside one another, until the day my insides catch fire and float away.