AS I lay in bed in the early hours of the morning, my mind drifted off to the pictures I took of the Christmas tree in the office and the theme from the Alvin and the Chipmunks movie played over and over in my head, “Christmas Christmas time is near, time for joy and time for cheer”.
I thought of what I should do for my children and their father this Christmas and was taken back to my own childhood years, where there were presents under the tree every Christmas and where we were made to believe Santa Claus truly existed.
We would leave cakes or biscuits and milk for Santa. Someone, probably dad, would eat them but we were convinced it was Santa who, with his helpers, had left the presents.
Sometimes dad would wake us in the middle of the night and tell us to come quickly or we’d miss seeing Santa. We would rush outside and see footprints and be told we’d missed the sleigh just by seconds.
As we kids got older we tried to make Christmas for our younger siblings just as memorable.
One Christmas my baby brother wanted a bike so badly that he prayed for it every night. We encouraged him in his prayers and told him that the good Lord would hear them and that Santa would bring him a bike.
Come Christmas Eve my brother was so excited that he could not sleep, and when we told him Santa would soon make a stop at our house he could barely contain his excitement.
He clasped his hands together and whispered, “aiyo, mi laik krai”. I was moved to tears when I heard these words.
That was the last time we ever spent Christmas together as a family. We had spent so many wonderful Christmases together, sharing great excitement and joy.
We do not have Christmases like that anymore. My parents separated and we grew up and were scattered all over the place.
But I thank God for showing my siblings and me the true spirit of Christmas through our parents in those innocent years.
I hope that I can do the same for my children: have them experience the true meaning of Christmas.