Sunday, December 8, 2013

Tired of All Those Christmas Brag Letters?

Tired of All Those Christmas Brag Letters?

December 7, 2013
I really admire the families who include letters with their Christmas cards.  They send perfect pictures of their well-behaved children in the beautiful places they’ve visited this year.
However, I don’t have time for perfect on account of I’m too busy watching Dr. Phil and that medical talk show with all those hot doctors.  And I’m always plagued by some important task hanging over my head.  It’s too bad I can’t remember what it is.
And why can’t I go to those beautiful places?  Because I’m home editing a five-page paper on why Zeus and Medusa wound up inside the Trojan Horse or some crap like that.  The next day I’m scraping burnt french fries off my rusty cookie sheet, and my friend is over there in Italy telling Edwardo, her hot masseuse, “A little more warm oil, please.”
Don’t get me wrong.  I love my friends who send letters.  I want to know about their exciting lives.  A part of me wants to slip it down the garbage disposal, but the sender may ask me later what I thought about their Alaskan cruise.  But a part of me is glad they are thoroughly enjoying their lives.
Why am I jealous sometimes, though?  I have everything I want.  I have plenty of time to ponder my blessings when I’m driving back at 9 p.m. from a wrestling match an hour away.  Thank God I usually remember to buy granola bars for my other two kids for dinner.  I also ruminate on my blessings, shivering, at 7 a.m. and again at 7 p.m. at soccer games in a tournament seven hours away.  Sometimes I’m so overwhelmed with thankfulness that I want to get on my knees right there on the sideline but my butt is stuck to the bleachers.
But the thing is—there’s no where I’d rather be.  I’ll never have these days back, but Turks and Caicos will always be there.  I’d rather watch my daughter play point guard for the very first time than visit some Paradise Point.  I’d rather see her perfect her rise ball than watch a sunrise in Oahu.  And most of all, seeing my daughter’s embarrassment when I volunteer to have her Bible study at my house is priceless.
One day I might make it to an exotic location, but right now I’m enjoying watching my beautiful children put their home-made (well, school-made) ornaments on our Christmas tree.    When I do make it to Italy, I wonder if Edwardo will still be there.


  1. Great post, Cathy! I had one too many of those letters from a relative we were sort of estranged from when I was a much younger man, and I sent back a made up holiday letter of my own because I was sick of him referring to people I had never met...

  2. This year one of my friends sent a really honest letter instead of a brag letter; she shared her family's achievements (and beautiful vacations) but also their struggles, which I really admired!