Tonight is Christmas Eve Eve Eve, which means Christmas is 25% closer than it was last night on Christmas Eve Eve Eve Eve, a puzzling fact, since I’m certainly not 25% more prepared.
Perhaps I’m not better prepared because I spent a good chunk of last night in the bathtub, having snagged two packages of Cheez-Its from my kids’ snack shelf in the pantry and one Stella Artois from the top shelf in the fridge so I could lay in classy, naked, boob-floaty splendor, reading my latest trashy, magic-laden novel by candlelight whilst dropping crackers into the bog and dredging them back out to eat their soggy goodness because if you get them fast enough, they’re still crunchyish, and therefore totally edible, as every mom knows.
My bathtub ecstasy lasted 8 minutes ’til I was caught, literally red-handed, up to my wrist in crinkly Cheez–It plastic, whereupon my child cried because I stole snacks that were not mine and ate them all gone. “You ate them ALL GONE, MOM,” my child cried when he caught me. And I, wise and mature, countered, “DID NOT. There are, like, two whole crackers left in here and at least that many floating in the tub, although you’ll have to work to fish those out if you’re hoping to eat them.” And my child said, “EW, gross; you STOLE them and then you RUINED THEM.” Which is what’s wrong with kids these days. No work ethic, expecting others to steal and fish for them. I, though? I am here to provide a better example. You’re welcome, kids.
It’s 7:08pm on Christmas Eve Eve Eve, and I have Things to Do. Things to Finish. Things *ahem* to Start. Like cooking and cleaning and creating meaningful gift experiences that show my kids they are worth every extravagance while giving them a global perspective that helps them become well rounded, not entitled, and productive members of society. No pressure, though.
It’s 7:10pm on Christmas Eve Eve Eve and I should be Better Prepared than I am right now, which is how I feel about life, really, and not just about Christmas.
I should be better prepared, right? I’m pretty sure I should.
Perhaps I shouldn’t have spent my day sitting at my desk with my chin propped on my hand, staring at my rain soaked backyard while the dogs tackled each other and dragged every puddle into the house, and hitting the refresh button on my Facebook feed, hoping TipHero would post videos faster so I can see all the ways I’m failing to hack my life.
Perhaps I shouldn’t have spent my day hollering at my kids to quit hollering at each other because one copied his brother’s Minecraft creation and so the other hit him in the face with his knee but by accident.
Perhaps I should’ve had the kids do their chores and their reading.
Or perhaps I should’ve done the laundry.
Perhaps I shouldn’t have slept in.
Perhaps the kids should have.
Or, at the core, perhaps I should’ve done more, and done it before now. At Christmas time and Always.
Perhaps I should’ve done more and done it better, you know? Bigger and brighter, maybe. Bolder.
And perhaps I shouldn’t have been so overwhelmed by All the Things and snuck that box of Cadbury cookies into my bed to eat in secret. The hazelnut ones are the best, by the way. The hazelnut or the shortbread; it’s hard to choose.
Perhaps I should’ve.
Or perhaps it’s OK to have it partly together this year. Partly together and no more.
Perhaps it’s OK to have it partly together and to be imperfect.
Perhaps it’s OK to do Some of the Things and not All of Them.
Perhaps it’s OK to have dog mud on the couch and not enough Cheez-Its in the house.
Perhaps it’s OK to have wanted to give my kids everything and a global perspective, and to not quite have done either, as though their lives are partly up to them and they get a say, too, in how they turn out.
Perhaps it’s OK to give my kids the few things I can afford and with those my heart, my soul and my life, such that it is, poured out in full.
Perhaps it’s enough to sit in this season of Advent– of waiting in the dark for the Light to come — of Hopes Realized and Hopes Unrealized — and be OK with complexity of it all.
It’s 7:48pm on Christmas Eve Eve Eve, friends, and I have Some Things ready, but not Everything, like I’d hoped, but I’m here, anyway, to say Merry Christmas, and perhaps it’s OK, complex momrades. Perhaps it’s OK anyway.
Merry Christmas Eve Eve Eve,