I am a Christian. I believe that Jesus was the son of God, died on the cross for our salvation and rose after three days to be with his Father. I am not, however,
Christmas memory of the day: When we were really young (Bubba was only a few months old), we lived in Wake Village on Ellen in a tiny house filled with three children under the age of six and Mama and Daddy. Gayla and I shared a room that we both thought was enormous but 8 mm film shows to be teeny tiny.
The first Christmas I remember is that one. I remember waking up to a clatter in the kitchen and instantly knew Santa was doing what he does best. I was excited beyond measure and crawled over into Sister's bed to wake her up.
"Gayla, SANTA IS HERE!" I whispered as I shook her and hugged her at the same time. She told me to shush and pretend I was asleep or he would leave and not deliver everything. Frightened of this horrific tragedy, I quickly and quietly scrambled back into my own bed and squeezed my eyes shut tight.
It might have been a few hours or a few minutes later, Mama and Daddy woke us up with the bright light of that 8 mm camera ready to capture our surprise for posterity. The rest of this memory is what I see in that precious treasure of film each year. Sister and I run through a gamut of gifts: a tunnel for crawling through, a table and bench seat toy boxes, beautiful blond baby dolls as big as us (whose hair net was just as fun to play with as the doll), and so very much more.
The smiles and silent laughter are the gems I clutch this year and play on repeat over and over in my mind's eye. The scene where Gayla pulls that mesh net from her dolly's hair over her own head so that it smushes her nose in particular pulls at my heart. I so badly want to go back to that Christmas and hug my Gayla and hold on to her so tight. I want to stay snuggled up to her and pretend we are asleep and waiting for Santa to finish his delivery.