Christmas has always been a tough time of year for me. It seems to exemplify James' delay. When you have a child with special needs no matter how okay you are with it there are always still days or moments that are hard or frustrating or bring tears to your eyes. It's always been hard for me to watch others' kids get excited about Christmas, drink hot chocolate, look at Christmas lights in wonder, open presents...all of the things you imagine Christmas will be when you become a parent. Every year Dan continually reminds me that I'm only feeling bad for myself. James doesn't know he's missing anything. And while that's true it still didn't take away the fact that I wanted him to be excited for this most wonderful time of year.
The second attempt wasn't even this good
I don't really know what changed this year but I decided if I wanted the boys to experience the beauty of Christmas then just like everything else we'd have to work at it...harder than others do, but it wasn't an excuse. So over and over I've worked with James to get him to identify Santa and Rudolph. He'll tell you Santa brings presents and Rudolph has a red nose and eats carrots. And Baby Jesus is Baby Farm. He doesn't understand that Santa will bring him presents tonight or that Baby Jesus is anything other than a baby in a barn. And when he saw Santa...well yeah I guess you could say it didn't go well...either time. But he dances to Jingle Bells and cheers for it, he points to the Church with the Christmas light display and yells mismis lights. And he works so incredibly hard to say mismas but he does with a wide toothy grin!
This year our house is covered in lights, lopsided and uneven, but still there. And the look on the boys face when they saw them light up was priceless. Much to Dan's dismay there's pine branches on every shelf, candles, Christmas signs, lights...and a Christmas tree still only half decorated. I'll use the excuse that I have toddlers but really that was one thing I just didn't have time for. Like everything else there has to be a balance and a perfect Christmas tree fell off the list. James helped me bake Christmas cookies, using a cookie cutter and decorating wasn't happening so instead our sugar cookies are plain, but they were made. And we boxed them up in white boxes just like Little Grammy used to do and sent them off to a few special women who I wanted to bring a smile to. They aren't perfect, but they're made with love.
So tonight when the boys go to bed they aren't yet at the point where they'll be excited for tomorrow morning. Maybe that will be next year, maybe not, but what I do know is this year our little house is filled to the brim with Christmas Love and that means more than these guys being excited about the soccer net and balls that will mysteriously appear over night. Its not from the trimmings or lights, those are just symbols of the love our house is filled with. Our slightly imperfect decorations are a reflection of our slightly imperfect, but oh so perfect Christmas Love.