A Thankful Christmas: Xmas 2012

by - 9:11 PM

Time is playing tricks on me.
Passing so quickly, I literally dream about those hot summers when I was ten and I'd climb the tree in the backyard, wishing for something, anything, to do. All those years ago, I craved something to help pass the time. Now I'm actively hunting for something to make it slooow down. I trying to find the pause button, but it seems like all I can find is the fast-forward. Even worse, I keep accidently pressing it.

Sometimes I have to remind myself that I will not be young forever. This is a jolting thought, one that I've rarely considered in my young life, because at eighteen, time moved so much slower and aging seemed so far away. It might as well have been never. Like Peter Pan, I figured I'd never grow up. It would happen to everyone else, but not me. 

But then, six years have passed so quickly. I'm different now, then I was in 2006. My head is in a different place, my body has most certainly changed. Stress affects me differently. I make alternative decisions. Feel empathy more deeply. I embrace my independence and crave personal singularity more than ever. As silly at it seems, I finally feel like a woman. Not a girl; a woman. Somewhere along the way, I grew up, and it happened so fast.

Things will never be the same as they are today. Life is such a revolving door.
Christmas has come again. And soon, it will be once more gone.
Come and gone. Oh the story of our lives.


But then there's the memories, those glossy, gilded things that, unlike years and holidays and all the other things that pass, last forever. They won't come and go.  They come and stay, sparkling and shining for always.

Memories are such vulnerable things. Subject to perception, outright inaccuracy, and the general passing of time that renders them fuzzy and pixelated. I suppose that there is no one perfect way to preserve them, but I believe in very good, if not fool-proof, solutions.
My maternal clock has yet to tick, but the legacy clock is practically vibrating, it screams so loudly. And I think that any woman who has any kind of clock come alive will tell you, there's no such thing as a snooze button. I want to share my memories with the little girls in my life, not so that I can recreate the same memories, but so that I can be a part, a lasting legacy, of creating the same warm, snuggly holiday connotations in their memories. And one day, they'll be adults, heaven forbid, and they'll have children of their own, or maybe a sweet niece or nephew, or maybe even a classroom, in which they'll have the same craving to establish memories for the next generation.
Sure, Christmas comes and goes, but memories, those fragile things, those last forever.
Adellia and I shared memories this weekend. We snuggled on the couch, watching Charlie Brown's Christmas. I hummed along with the gang as they sang "O Christmas Tree" because I still remembered the tune, even though it's been years since I've seen the film.
I woke up with a little girl tucked close in the crook of my arm. We giggled together in the warm light of the Christmas tree because heheehe, we're soo silly. It's so early!

Please excuse the puffy eyes of an aunt who was awake at a time that is greater than 3, but less than 5.
She asked me if I wanted to see the baby Jesus.
Never one to turn down a supernatural sighting, I agreed.

"Wanna play?" she asked before kindly offering to let me be the camel.
She showed me all her favorite ornaments, like this one. Her parents got married this fall and this seemingly insignificant thing celebrates it. She clutches hard to that memory already and consequently, it's her favorite bulb adorning the tree.
I thought only my life moved at warp speed, but then I stumbled upon the smiling face of a two years younger little Adellia and my heart felt warm...and heavy, and I once more knew the pang of how fleeting our time together really is.
"Um, Aunt Jenn? Um, do you remember, like, when I was a baby?" She screwed up her face in genuine curiousity. As if I could forget.
I nodded with a smile before planting a kiss on her still baby soft cheek. "Yeah, honey-bear. I remember."
It felt like the right time to explain to her how important memories are, but something unreal and intangible stopped me. Memories don't come with directions. They don't need to. Somehow the important stuff just settles in and I felt the weight of something so much larger than myself. Trust her to remember the stuff she needs. The stuff that she'll take into adulthood and use to mold the memories that she imparts to the children that will exist. The children we cannot even fathom today.
It feels so mundane, the stuff we do. But maybe this turns into one of the small glimpses of the past that she remembers. The sitting together on the couch. The mindless babble of her mother and I chatting incoherently about pinterest projects and sparkling grape juice. The flash of my camera.
Who knows.
As for me, I'm willfully filing this into the "important tab" in my own memory.

Christmas, 2012.

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