I want my Christmas—now!

How do you gift-wrap a hug? 

Artwork by Marx Reinhart Fidel

My Chair Rocks

Normally I am annoyed at how in September they are playing Christmas songs. I want more time to get ready; get my shopping done, to plan my menu, to figure out how to make the budget fit the list, or vice-versa.  I don’t even get the tree up until Thanksgiving.  And even then I am not too sure I will be done on the Eve.

But this year, I am saying, “Bring it on!  I am ready!”   Oh, how I long for something to change.

I want Christmas, NOW. Play me some Christmas songs. Show me some tinsel and poinsettias, I don’t care if they are not yet in season.  Let me hear some ho ho ho’s.  Please.

Why this eagerness?  This impatience? Maybe it’s because there has been nothing joyful or celebratory lately.  Since mid March, we have been holding our collective breaths, worried and in fear of our safety, in daily dread for our lives. How does one celebrate that?

Except for the amazingly happy results of the recent US elections, there has been nothing but gloom.  Oh yes, the Biden-Harris victory colored my sky with rainbows.  We can exhale now.  I sincerely believe we can hope again, and that we will see the return of character and decency. Thank you God.


Once upon a time it was a two-tiered red pencil box. But the war came.  And we had Christmas during blackouts and air raids. But we celebrated.  Because even in the bleakest of times, we were together.  We were family. It was good.

But the year is 2020.  And the question is the same.

Here is my reply.

How do you gift-wrap a hug?  How can you package the warmth of an embrace?

Give me a hand that is safe to hold, arms that will hold me and keep me warm.

I want to get close enough to touch and breathe in the sweet breath of a baby.

I want to feel the joy of a child running to me to get some loving.

I want to be free to put my head on someone’s shoulder for a quick cry or a little snuggle.

I want to see happy smiles in faces free of masks and shields.

I want to say “Gesundheit!” when someone sneezes, instead of running for cover.

I want weekends to feel like weekends again.

I miss travel.  I want to be able to go places without having to worry about “catching it” or being “exposed”.

I want to have a conversation that has nothing to do with the virus or politics.

I want to go to a restaurant without protective barriers, where there is no need to wipe and sanitize. If I have alcohol, let it be in my drink, not in a spray bottle.

I want our big family reunions back. I want to gather with people, stand arm in arm, hand in hand, face to face. I am tired of fist and elbow bumps.

With all of me, I long to bask and bathe in the cozy warmth of Christmas, to taste, unafraid, the magic of welcoming friends and family with open arms and open hearts. There is no feeling like it.

Zoom is wonderful, but please God, I want to get all dressed up and pretty, go to church and worship You with the people I love, and together sing hymns about that first silent night when the angels sang about the newly born Christ. And then I want us all to hug and kiss and wish one another a “Merry Christmas”.

Is that too much to ask?  I sincerely hope not!

About author


She has written books, and used to write the column My Chair Rocks in Inquirer Lifestyle. She continues to be a source of wisdom not only for her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, but also for her friends and readers.

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