listening to "christmas is all around" from Love Actually - which i actually love.
i love this time of year.
i used to hate it. before i met patrick, christmas was the suckiest time of year. i used to sprawl in the livingroom wishing for good christmases to come - the house was dark, the christmas lights were soft and glowy, snow fell thick and heavy, and mysterious packages collected under the tree. in spite of all this christmas loveliness, well, ... "all i really wanted was" ... hahah, actually jeff robichaud, usually. i wanted him to stop asking me what he should buy his girlfriend for christmas, and buy me something instead. (okay, he usually did buy me something too - he was a great friend, and i shouldn't've complained).
my sisters had boyfriends and got to go out, wear pretty clothes, and hang up their bouquets of roses to dry next to the tree. i got to babysit on new years eve and knew no one would ever kiss me at the stroke of midnight. i was the ugliest of ducklings.
i think christmases cemented my desire to be a teacher. i knew no one would ever love me and want to make twinkly christmas magic together - so at least, if i was a teacher i could take trips away at christmas time. i could travel and hole up in a hotel somewhere and read books and eat cheesies and swim, even, on december 25th!
and then i met patrick.
he transformed christmas. our first kiss - our first i love you - our engagement - all happened in one magical christmas vacation (i've still never been kissed at the stroke of midnight on new year's eve, but that's another story about too much juice and unfortunate bladder control). now, when christmas music starts to play, i think about my train ride to ontario. i think about the heart-thumping dazzliness of meeting patrick at the station. the dizzying ride on the subway. the pancakes we made for supper, then our walk in the snow when we both wanted to hold hands but didn't. the delicious smell of patrick's winter jacket. the incredible certainty that this was my one true love (and incidentally, no, i would not have to suffer through interminable christmases enviously watching my sisters be loved).
snuggling our feet under the table (sorry uncle bert ... hehe) - holding hands on the train - writing mushy notes to each other when we should've been wrapping presents - going for walks in the sweet kapuskasing cold, just to be alone and in love - not caring what we were doing, as long as it was together. it was a fabulous christmas, and now i love christmas, love remembering how we met and fell in love. i know that christmas is the time when we remember God's love for us, and His gift to us - Jesus. now that i have patrick's arms around me and his lips on my cheek, i've got my mind of off myself and my own stagnant self-pity. christmas is a light in the dark, warmth in the cold, and generosity in the face of want. it's the perfect reminder that God loves us outrageously.
as tiny tim says ... God bless us, every one!