I work with a lot of kids. Lately, I have been asking each one of them, “What do you want for Christmas?” The answers are as expected. One student wanted a video game. Another wanted Legos. It got me to thinking, what do I want for Christmas? I think there are obvious answers. I want my honey to be well. I want financial security. Those, I think, are legitimate wants. I do not think anyone would begrudge me of them. And yet, there is something else I want altogether.
Lately, if I sit real still and just be, I have these moments of perfect serenity and gratitude. I do not know why they started happening; but I first started noticing them in the morning. I have two puppies who sleep with me. And lately, one of them has taken to waking me up in the morning with a little nudge. She is not obtrusive. She is not licking me. It’s more of a calm query. Are you awake yet? Sweet like. And if I move to pet her, the other puppy will look up to see how awake I am, and like a snooze button, curls back up against me for a few more minutes of sleep. I spend my first few moments of the day in a warm bed with two quiet and thoughtful puppies. And I am happy.
But then they started happening more often. Last night, my honey and I went to our usually late night meeting. Afterwards, we stopped by Starbucks and got a cappuccino and spent an hour driving around the city looking at Christmas lights. We drove through River Oaks and into Memorial, listening to Christmas carols on the freeway, turning off the Christmas carols when Jingle Bell Rock came on, and then turning them back on again. In this moment when I didn’t need anything else to be different in the world. It was perfect, just as it was. I had a friend whom I love, good conversation over a cup of hot coffee, and peace.
So, what do I want for Christmas? I want more of that. I know it does not come from a store. Amazon does not sell it. I cannot stick a bow on it. But it does seem I can ask for it. It feels that if I silently ask for the moment to continue, and if I stay real still, and if I just appreciate the beauty of the moment as it is without allowing any thoughts of judgment or criticism to slip in… the moment of peace stretches out in front of me. That quiet is priceless.
Here’s wishing you and your family and friends a peaceful Christmas filled with quiet appreciation.