I have few regrets, but sometimes I do regret not having children. That image bobs around the ocean of emotion I swim through during the holidays. Christmas is as much a family celebration time as it is a religious-based holiday and as adults, we often revert to traditions and rituals from our youth.
A few years ago I produced and co-hosted a one-hour radio show called “We’re All Kids at Christmas.” The show included songs that showcased some of the child-like qualities of the holiday, such as “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” and “Santa Looked A Lot Like Daddy.” My co-host and I also reminisced about Christmas time in our youth and we each had a conversation with “Santa” and told him what we wanted for Christmas as adults. (By the way, I did NOT get world peace but I did eventually get a bright red Ford Explorer).
The best part of that radio show was our conversations with kids. We got the OK from a local shopping mall to interview children standing in line to see Santa. We interviewed some of the parents too. The sense of wonderment in each kid’s voice was even more memorable than whatever it was they planned to ask the Big Guy to get them.
I think if I had kids I would have tried to make this holiday as special for them as it was for me at that age. Part of why so many people experience holiday depression at this time of year is that we try to recreate that feeling, even though our lives may have taken many twists and turns since then. Something that usually snaps me out of my own holiday blues is the sound of children, even if it’s only Zuzu’s line in “It’s A Wonderful Life.” Laugh if you want to, but seeing that movie each year as an adult means even more to me than it did as a kid.
Random questions about your Christmas traditions, if you happen to celebrate it:
- Do you unwrap presents on Christmas Eve or on Christmas morning?
- Did you pretend to sleep but were really awake trying to see Santa?
- How did you feel upon discovering that Santa wasn’t quite who you thought he was?
- Which is your favorite holiday movie: “A Christmas Carol,” “It’s A Wonderful Life” or “Miracle on 34th Street”? Or do you not like any of them?
- Do you have a favorite Christmas song?
- Do you object to religious-themed displays in front of public buildings at Christmas?
- OK, back to kid stuff because that last question could start an endless debate … do you carefully unwrap presents or do you rip through the wrapping paper?
- Have you ever actually eaten a fruitcake?
OK, the kid in me says it’s time to go watch “It’s A Wonderful Life” again. The adult in me says I’ll have a glass of wine instead of milk and cookies. Although I do believe I smell cookies being cooked as I write this. Maybe I’ll have wine and cookies.
Merry Christmas to my blog family!!
And if you don’t celebrate any of the December holidays, come back in a day or two and we’ll talk about something else.