Saturday, November 21

Family at Christmas

One of the Radio stations in town has started playing endless Christmas music, and I love it! As I was listening yesterday on my way home from work, there was a woman talking about her Christmas experience. “I just love Christmas time,” she explained “it was the one time of the year when my family got together and we hardly ever fought, everyone just got along!”

She defiantly did not come from my family! I laughed to myself as I thought about my family at Christmas. I feel like this was the time of year we were at each other’s throats! It just wasn’t Christmas without my mom nagging us to help around the house, help with the decorations, do the dishes, my dad stressed out about the Christmas service at church and the things that needed to be done around the house, all four of us kids with our stubborn and over-dramatic selves fighting with each other, my sister and I yelling at each other, with a constant competition around our parents. It was just a part of home.

I remember one year, my sister and I were driving home together for Christmas, an 8-hour drive across the state. I remember distinctively, we had just gotten on the freeway after fighting the mall a Christmas present for our brother. I don’t remember what it was about, but we were fighting. (My mother will tell you we were always fighting). Not just a discussion here, we were yelling at each other at the top of our lungs. When we stop and are dead silent, my sister turns up the radio, that same station with the endless Christmas music is playing. All of the sudden my sister starts laughing out loud.
Still mad (but curious at what is so funny) I snap “What!?”
“The song, listen”
*Radio* “…It’s the Hap-Happiest season of all!...”
Still mad at her, I try to hold it in, but it is rather funny, I can’t stop the smile. Happiest season of all and we are yelling at each other.
And like that, the fight was over. Until we got home I’m sure.

And that’s how it was, we would fight, yell, I don’t know how many times I stomped upstairs to my room, making sure to hit every step. But we were a family. After the fighting was over, there we were; each other’s biggest allies and enemies all at once. My Christmas memories don’t include everyone “getting along” or peace on earth in any sense. But we were a family, and the love was always present.

I guess the song is right, “There’s no place like home for the holidays.”

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