Friday, December 29, 2006

Christmas morning times 5

I’ve had more “Christmas morning” moments in the past couple weeks than I think I’ve had in the past few years. When I was younger Christmas morning was filled with the surprise and awe of awakening to the piles of gifts that had materialized under our tree overnight, as well as the gleeful anticipation of what could be hidden under that wrapping. That’s worn off over the years, although gifts are still fun, and I found myself this year with a new kind of “Christmas morning” feeling: awe and gratitude at all that has been given to me, in so many varied ways. I’ll just give the three big ones (keepin’ it Trinitarian, folks!): help moving into our new house, two families filled with joy and generosity, and of course our little son.

Word to the wise: when moving with an infant, ask for lots and lots of help, particularly if you are the primary caregiver to said infant and expect to get any packing done at all. I think I packed a total of three boxes all on my own...and that doesn’t count the help I got actually acquiring the boxes themselves. I don’t think I actually ever asked for help, but we were overwhelmed by it, and thanks to everyone who came, we actually made it out of our apartment on time. My mom came over and quite professionally packed up our entire kitchen, and my dad played Santa, surpising us a few days before Christmas by packing up our whole living room for us while we were out at Michael’s Advent Concert and YA commitment Mass. On top of all that, he came back to help us move furniture with the Uhaul, along with my father- and brother-in-law and a wonderful friend who I’ll name here as “Juan Mas”. My father-in-law recently commented to Michael that it takes humility to receive a gift. I think I learned a good dose of humility on that Wednesday that we moved...on top of taking care of a baby, I was also down and out with a bad cold. I’m so used to being in control, and I had to humbly admit that not only did I not need to control the situation, because other people were doing it for me, I had to even more humbly admit that I couldn’t control it even if I wanted to, and just had to receive the great gift of help that so many people were offering to our little family.

I won’t go on for too long about #2 and #3, as Gabriel is wiggling on my lap and I will never post this on the blog if I keep writing. I have to just note that coming home to two warm houses filled with good food, pretty decorations, and great company felt extra good considering the chaos that our own home was in. And last but certainly not least, little Gabriel. He’s quite the “infant” now, and no longer a “newborn”. He’s become Mr. Grabby, wanting to snatch anything that passes his line of vision and stuff it into his mouth. He also likes to talk quite a bit, particularly in church or in the Eucharistic Chapel. The other day as we walked into Mass at the St. Luke’s chapel, I asked if he could hold off on the charismatic prayer until after Mass was over. Fortunately/unfortunately he just couldn’t hold back his exuberance to see Jesus and babbled and talked during the whole Mass in that little echo-filled chapel!

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