Monday, December 28, 2015

the show up chip

If you celebrate it I hope you had a lovely Christmas last week.
We do and we did.
Sometimes Pretty much every year
I feel like we go overboard with the gifts for our kids.
I blame it on my husband but who are we kidding?
I'm his enabler.
I always say "we have enough, they don't need another toy or game."
And while truer words have never spoken
I think its sweet that he truly just wants it to be special for them
as in let's keep them little while we can.

They're growing up so fast and I know the magic of a child's Christmas,
their innocent joy at watching Norad's Santa Tracker,
waiting for him to guide his reindeer over America
will soon probably end.
Christmas Eve we went for a drive after dinner
to look at neighborhood lights.
Once we got home they each opened one gift.
The only presents under the tree at that point were from our friend and neighbor.
He was very generous and they went to sleep excited beyond words.
So much so that starting at 1145pm
they each took turns coming in to our room
to let us know they were too excited to sleep.
Our youngest was the first to wiggle his way into the middle.
He's a giant so as the twins alternated in I had to keep telling them
there's no room in this inn...go back to your room.
Finally at four I wearily crawled into their giant bed
and announced that unless everyone fell asleep and took a nap,
Christmas wasn't happening.
Well, first a nap and then coffee for me.
They fell asleep.
Or so I thought.
As I tried to slither out of bed,
{you know when you're slinking out of a sleeping baby's room,
moving in slo-mo,
trying not to make one little sound
for fear they'll wake up immediately}
trying to be all ninja stealth like,
when one of the twins sat straight up in bed,
like "Hey! Its finally time! She's up. Let's go see if Santa came."
I paused at the edge of the bed and growled
"I'm going to get coffee. Not a word.
If you wake the others I'm telling you
Santa will have done a  nonstop flyover."
How's that for the spirit of the season?
I got my coffee and all was right with the world again.
In my book any way.
I heard the boys start to stir about half past six.
One by one they ran into our room.
My little giant came round to my side of the bed,
climbed up to give me a kiss
and says first thing:
"Mommy, are you and Daddy really Santa Clause?"
I'm sure I looked like a deer in the headlights.
No way.
I look at my husband and God love him
he just gives me a look like
"You got this. I believe in you."
That or "I cant wait to see how she gets out of this one."
Oy vey.
So I look at my hulk of a baby and ask
"Who have you been talking to?
There's no way I could possibly pull off Christmas like Santa.
And if you don't believe - let me tell you he won't come."
And my little guy without missing a beat says
I already looked downstairs.
He's been here for sure."
I tried hard not to laugh and said
"well, I guess he knew that you still really believe.
Because if you don't, by the time we get downstairs,
whatever you saw will be gone."
He thought about it briefly and decided it was risk he wasn't willing to take.
He said he was sorry he doubted.
He was back on board and all in for Santa.
I know there will come a day that he won't be.
That's ok too.
Its all a part of growing up.

Speaking of growing up
I have to say that I was somewhat reluctant to share
the story about my parents not coming last week.
Without the back story you might have just thought I was being a brat.
A grown up middle aged brat, pouty because they didn't come.
I hesitate to go any further but
then again what's there to fear?
My story?
My words?
My truth?
Christmas night as we talked about our day I had an epiphany.
Really my husband told me.
I was crying about the choice my parents made not to come.
I was saying how I wished they had been here to see our boys' joy.
My husband, so sweet and insightful, said
"Its not you, you know.
Its them.
They're missing a chip.
The show up chip.
You and I?
We get it and we got it.
Every field day, spelling bee, school activity...
we're there.
We show up.
We rearrange what we have to,
but we're there.
We show up for our kids.
Your parents didn't get that chip, for whatever reason.
The examples of which are sadly plentiful.
The going away party our friends threw the night before
you left Georgia for Texas and we waited for hours on them?
They didn't even try to call,
they just didn't show up.
They didn't get the chip.
When you were nominated for homecoming queen
and you were the only one whose dad didn't escort her on the football field?
They didn't get the chip.
It sucks and its not right but he's still a good man.
You adore him to pieces and treat him like a king.
But he didn't get the show up chip.
They're good people and did their best as parents
but in that department they failed.
They didn't get the chip.
You got it, I got it.
Let's be thankful we got it."
We did indeed.

While I'm slightly embarrassed to share these stories
I know too that I'm not the only one who has them.
I rarely bring them up,
rarely think about them really
but they're there, down deep in my heart.
Like with anything you can choose to be bitter about things
or take it as a learning experience.
Learn the lesson and move on.
That's my vote.

I share this to say sorry if your parents or someone you love didn't have the chip.
I hope you got it though.
Even if you didn't please know its never too late to install one.

I found this just now...
you know I love me a good quote box...
how perfect is this?



  1. I have to tell ya girlfriend...I get it, I really do. My folks called as I was prepping for Christmas Eve dinner earlier in the day to say they would not be coming, and might not make it to lunch Christmas Day either. Dad was feeling under the weather (they had just adjusted his BP meds the day before). I get that! I really do. But, given past history, it still stings every time I get the "sorry, we're not gonna make it". Especially when it is followed by, "but we do plan to be at your brother's later in the day." They did make it for lunch on Christmas after all, but my hubby has always said, "when do they not ever come for a meal that has been offered." I think we overcompensate in all areas because of the way things were when we were both growing up (his parents were "older" parents-40 and 52 when he was born). I appreciated you sharing your story-it helped me to put things in perspective when they called. And, I love what your hubby shared. It really is true. I may need to print that quote out.
    And, you have me hooked on It Cosmetics now ;-)

    1. {{{{hugs}}}} thanks so much for your comment. it made me cry to know someone else gets it. :) and so glad you're an IT girl too now! loves loves loves me some IT. :) happy new year!!!!!


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