I Believe.

Posted on | December 12, 2014 | No Comments

It hasn’t felt much like Christmas this year. Until lately, we’ve had a rush of warm weather in Georgia that just seemed to suck the joy right out of the season.

I’ve been cranky and J hasn’t been sleeping great because of all the excitement (and sugar), so he’s been cranky, too. We’ve both been at each other, pushing buttons and yelling and snipping like families do around the holidays when things aren’t perfect… even though nothing is ever perfect. I’ve been struggling through making “magic”  for J and wondering when it is that I get to stop and sit, and drink in what used to be my favorite time of the year… back before it meant cooking and cleaning and shopping and decorating until my fingers bleed Christmas red.

In short, I’ve been longing for someone or something to remind me what this is all about… why we do this… who we do this for. This morning, from the back seat of the car, a tender five year old voice sang along to Josh Groban’s “Believe” from the Polar Express and like an avalanche of snow it hit me… what I needed, what I STILL need… is to believe.

When I was a girl, I believed in Santa Claus for an extraordinarily long time. Part of that was due to the magic my parents sprinkled around at the holidays but a lot more of it was because I needed to believe in something bigger than just me and my family. I needed to believe there was a magical man who lived at the North Pole and loved children so much that he spent his life making toys and delivering them around the world. I needed to believe that someone I didn’t even know loved me THAT much.

Because that’s love, right? To spend your life caring for someone who never really sees you? To invest all of your love and time into people who will just grow up and stop believing in you at all. For a moment, this morning, I felt sorry for Santa. I thought about what a sad existence it might be, to love children so ferociously only to have them turn away from you as they grow.

What’s magical about Christmas isn’t Santa Claus; it’s the belief in Santa Claus. It’s the understanding that some things exist outside of what we see in that half-asleep and fuzzy world of what we knew as children and what we feel even now, when we stop to let ourselves breathe in the candy cane scented world around us. What’s been missing in my Christmas is the belief in magic, in mystery, in a love that created a son where no baby could have been. It’s belief that the stars in the sky moved and molded into something amazing over a small hotel in a small town a very long time ago. It’s the belief that someone so much bigger than me, so much grander and more perfect than I could ever hope to be, loves me so much that he spends every moment of his eternal life caring for me, investing his love and time into someone who just turns away. And yes, it’s even about the belief that a man lives in a world of elves and makes toys… and then delivers them around the world in one night.

What I’ve been missing is that childlike belief in something bigger than me; someone bigger than me.

Christmas isn’t about how much money I spend. It’s not about having the perfect tree or finding the perfect gift. It isn’t about who sings the loudest or bakes the most cookies or wraps the prettiest packages. It’s about believing in the magic that brought us here, to a place where we celebrate the birth of a baby, the miraculous and wonderful birth of a baby… who grew up to be so much to so many. It’s about believing in the magic that brings us Santa Claus, and the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy, and all other things that make childhood so vibrant and technicolor. It’s about squinting your eyes and knowing that shadow in the corner is a reindeer, or hearing the tinkling of bells and believing that just around that building is a jolly old man in a soft red suit.

So I guess it’s time I stop wondering what I’m missing. It’s time to stop wishing for someone to come and create magic for me.

It’s time to remember and worship and love and yes… so much so… it is time for me to believe.


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