Friday, December 11, 2009
A Christmas Memory
I'm telling this from what I remember from when it happened, a Christmas nearly two decades ago. I was around 8 years old. At that age, it's next to impossible to get to sleep on Christmas Eve -the excitement and anticipation is unlike any I've ever experienced.
J.C., Mike, and I would plan out our entire Christmas Eve routine. We made sure to be extra active during the day to try and get good and tired so that when it came time to try and sleep ...well, it was wishful thinking.
We would go to bed that night, turn out the lights, and be real quiet. After about an hour or so of whispering about our schemes and presents, we'd sneak out of bed to a fort we'd built -usually in the closet. There we'd have a stash of Christmas goodies and card games. We'd also have a radio that we'd turn on really quiet and listen to Christmas music. That would help pass the time until ...well, until we initiated our secret operation. Mom, you're reading this, and I'm not sure how much of this we've told you. Feel free to laugh!
We even had an abbreviated code for what actions were to be executed at what time:
P.Q.G.- play quiet games
L.A.G.- look at gifts
But this Christmas wasn't that planned. It turned out as more of a "we were too young to know any better".
Here's what I remember:
Me and Mike went upstairs at some insanely early hour to see if Santa had come, (no doubt, our parents had just gotten to sleep). To our delight, he had been there! He came and he'd left a great assortment of exciting things! Well, since Santa had been there, and since we were awake, it was Christmas! What do you do on Christmas, but open presents?!!! We played with our gifts from Santa and opened all the gifts under the tree that were to the "family". One of those gifts happened to be "The Land Before Time". Yeah, the first one, and the only good one, on VHS ...and we just HAD to watch it. One of Mike's presents from Santa was a big inflatable stegosaurus. It was big enough for us both to lay under its belly, side by side, and so we did. We cued up the movie and were having quite a merry time of it. I think we may have fallen asleep.
When Mom and Dad came out to discover what had happened, they didn't seem too pleased and that was so confusing to me at that age. Weren't they happy too? Santa had come! We were having so much fun! It was Christmas! They explained that even though it's Christmas, we need to wait for everyone to be awake before we start the festivities of the day. After that, we always had a specific time (or "Pacific") when we were allowed to come wake everyone up and start Christmas.
It didn't stop us from our schemes of at least seeing our gifts -that actually helped curb off some of the excitement in order to get some sleep.
That was a fun memory though - me and Mike, laying under the belly of a big stegosaurus, watching Little-Foot and his friends on their way to the Great Valley.