Now that the holidays are approaching, I'm taking some time to reflect on the many -- too many to mention -- years that have passed and the Christmases that have come and gone. I've probably talked about this before...in fact, I know I have...about how sad Christmas can be when you're a grown-up. Things change, we all get older blah blah blah. But every year it makes me really nostalgic.
I have many Christmas memories that I cherish... As Christmas Day got nearer, under the tree got more and more crowded with brightly-colored presents of various sizes. I wasn't one of those to pick up the presents and shake 'em. I was a peeker. I just wanted to see which gifts were mine, and their general size and shape.
I remember waking up early in the morning on Christmas Day and peering out of my bedroom to see if my stocking was full. The lumpier it was, the happier I was. I knew what Santa had put in there: nuts, candy, gum or Tic Tacs, and maybe even a small toy. I remember my heart leaping in my chest thinking that Santa had come down the chimney and personally put something in my stocking, thinking solely of me at that moment.
I also would strain my eyes to see if the cookies had been eaten. We'd also leave carrots for the reindeer, and they were always left half-munched on. Knowing that Santa had enjoyed our fresh-baked cookies and that he had fed his reindeer our carrots made me happy.
I recall turning to my sister (whom with I shared a room) and seeing what time it was. How much longer would we have to wait? How many more hours until Mom and Dad would be up? Were my other siblings awake? The doors across the hall would open and there would be my older brother and sister, also peering out of their respective rooms, trying to crane their necks to see downstairs in to the living room. We'd have at least another hour to go until we could go down and see what was there.
And those are the moments I clearly remember: not what present I got what year, or what I got from whom. The anticipation, the excitement, the enchantment that surrounds Christmas Day...that's what I miss the most.