Friday, December 14, 2007

Christmas wishes

The other night I was in the Sports Authority, looking at Red Sox jerseys and there was a serious Christmas carol playing over the loudspeaker. Serious meaning the lyrics actually mentioned Jesus. And I was looking at Red Sox jerseys. Do you know how much Red Sox jerseys cost? $70, that’s what. And do you know how much the same jersey costs if it has a World Series patch on the sleeve? The very same $70 jersey, only with a patch saying 2007 World Series Champions on it costs $90. And I knew my daughter would love to have a David Ortiz jersey, but there is no way I could afford something like that, particularly because on that very same dark night a bill from the oil company for $400 lay waiting for me in the mailbox. And I'm sick of all this. I'm sick of Christmas and the push to buy things for people to prove we love them. It's sick.

What I want for Christmas can’t be bought. And I know it’s a cliché, but I don't care. I'm naive and maybe a bit stupid and I just don't care anymore. What do I want for Christmas?

I want to spend more time with my kids. Every day I pay for the bad choices I’ve made. And I’m sorry, and I know it doesn't matter how sorry you are in this life. But I want to spend more time with my daughter, like when we discuss the books she’s reading in school, because I can teach them better than her teachers can. And when we talk about them, she likes them. But when her teachers discuss them, they bore her.

I want to spend more time sitting with my other daughter like we did the other day, when she stopped by and we drank cups of tea together, and we talked, and I noticed an undercurrent of melancholy, but didn't know why or what I could do.

I want to spend as much time as I can with Sue, and I want her next to me when I wake up at night so I can take her hand so I can fall back to sleep. Because I wake up every night now, and when she’s not there, I stay awake. But if she’s lying next to me, I reach for her hand and drift back to sleep.

I want to spend more time with my dog, and give the old boy the attention he needs. He’s going blind and deaf and he’s arthritic, and he needs more time and more reassurance. And if I have to take the next train in the morning because he’s a little scared or worried because I'm leaving, well, I want to be able to take the time because he's a better person than most people.

I want to spend more time with the couple of friends I have left, because when I’m with them, everything bad goes away. I forget, and when they leave I am, for a second, startled that the bad is still there, and it makes me realize it isn’t as strong as I thought it was

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