What do I really want for Christmas?

What if this was your last Christmas. What would you wish for as a gift?

I’m sure I’m not alone when it comes to not being overly organised at Christmas, that I’m not the only one who finishes their Christmas shopping on Christmas eve.

Every year I begin shopping early December believing I’ll sail through this Christmas. I ask my children photo credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/rosasay/4198739567/">Rosa Say</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>pleasantly, ‘What would you like for Christmas?’. After a few trips to the shops I ask again, but this time I may sound a bit more threatening, ‘Tell me what you want for Christmas?’. Then finally around about December 17th I find myself in a rage, the pressure building, muttering constantly as I make my way around the house, ‘Stupid presents, you should be grateful for whatever you get’. Then comes ‘the moment’, the time my family know that Christmas has cracked me. When I return laden from a day shopping, and shout in their direction, ‘I’m keeping the receipts and if you don’t like what I got you, well, tough, you can return it. See if I care’. 

Over the past few days I could feel it building. I knew I was only days away from that final crack. However this morning I read something and it stopped me in my tracks. I could feel my Christmas anxiety drop almost immediately.

It was an article written in ‘The USA Today’ about a young American basketball player, nineteen year old Lauren Hill. She was diagnosed with a brain tumour fourteen months ago and is sadly very close to the end of her battle. Since diagnosis she has raised over half a million dollars and awareness for her type of cancer. The article was a recent interview she gave during which she said,

‘For Christmas I don’t want any material gifts, I just want time. Time to spend with my family’.

Reading this made me have a serious rethink. Lauren Hill at just nineteen years of age is running out of time. Here I am rushing around with barely a moment to spare, not appreciating the time I have. When I’m not racing to the pool, I’m rushing off shopping. Family time is almost non existent. My priorities are ass ways.

So today I am taking a stand. I had planned to get in some shopping and do some other pre Christmas crazy racing around. However I will desist. This afternoon I will not leave the house, instead we will spend the afternoon hopefully watching a Christmas movie or two. With any luck my older two children will arrive home from College for Christmas and join us.

Today I will get what Lauren Hill wants so badly, and what Daniel and Ben’s parents can never again have… Time with my family. As William Henry Davies poem says,

‘What is this life if full of care, we have no time to stand and stare’.

Today I intend to stop running around trying to buy my family the things I think they want. Instead I will give them what is priceless. Time spent laughing and enjoying family life together.

Thank you Lauren Hill for the timely reminder. This Christmas I already have all I could want.



22 thoughts on “What do I really want for Christmas?

  1. It’s what I want. I’ve been spending time making things to give people because the gift of time is in each gift I made. The time I spent thinking of them. The time I spent creating for them. The time I hope they think of me when they see it. And know it was because I wanted that connection. I can’t give anything of more value. Or receive anything more.

  2. I am so with you. An old work colleague of mine lost her daughter a year ago on January 3rd. They have since welcomed their son. First Christmas with baby, first Christmas without baby. It’s simply not fair. What they wouldn’t give for one more minute, one more second.
    I am holding on tight to my time too, because I am so lucky. Good on you Tric.

    1. Yes we are so lucky and it is good to appreciate that. I am so sorry about your friends little one. I remember you saying it either in a post or a comment. It must be beyond a nightmare for them, and even though they have a lovely little one it can never replace what they have lost.Bens family too have a new arrival a beautiful little girl.
      Hope you and all your family have a lovely crazy, happy Christmas. xx

  3. Yep. Time. Simply meaningful time — be it with family, friends or others. Gift giving tends to become less significant, at least from my family’s perspective, when we get to share time with one another. Merry Christmas, Tric!

    1. I think because it is such a simple thing to ask for and something we all have, that made me stop and remember that time doesn’t last forever, and we mostly will never know when it will run out on us.
      Hope you have a lovely Christmas Eric. Best wishes.

  4. Sometimes we need an eye-opener to see, what is really important.

    Time is the best we can give and we can give this in many ways. A gift for a older family member could be time too. Time where we offer our help in one or another way. A homemade gift-card with offers as gives time is perfect.
    Merry Christmas Tric.

    1. That was one beautiful read Duncan.
      I hope you have an okay Christmas. I know this is not the easiest time for you, but hope your new addition to the family helps to lift your spirits.
      Happy Christmas. xxxx

  5. I dropped out of the ‘Christmas race’ a few years ago, when no longer physically or financially able to do it anymore. It doesn’t lessen the holiday any for me, as I have friends I can reach out to, and they will be there.

  6. Tric, couldn’t agree more! I decided not to do Christmas at all this year and had the most wonderful Christmas Eve today with my 19-year old son ~ out all day enjoying the fresh air with the dogs. The best gift I could possibly have got!

    1. Sounds just lovely. I’d a frantic, but pleasant day getting ready for a houseful tomorrow. Hard work and hectic, but we will have some craic all together tomorrow.
      Happy Christmas. I hope you have a lovely few days.

  7. This Christmas was difficult for my son and daughter-in-law as it was Christmas without their baby. He broke down and sobbed.
    It is hard that whilst we are grieving we must not separate ourselves from those who are still here and yes, time is such an important gift.

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