Tuesday, February 08, 2011

A Love Story continued ...

Next up was our first Christmas as husband and wife. We put up a little tree in our trailer. That Christmas was …one of the most memorable of our 36 as husband and wife. It was memorable since it was our first, but it was also memorable because it was a good Christmas. We were not rolling in money, but that has never been the most important issue about Christmas. We had put up a tree, it was a little tree considering how small the living space was in our trailer. The decorating was minimal given the space and the fact that we had not accumulated the amount of Christmas stuff that we now own. In fact I don’t remember anything about the decorations other than the tree.

We were in our little trailer. It was very cold outside and it was not real warm inside. But we were together and we were excited to share this Christmas. I learned something about Jody that Christmas and it has not changed to this day. She gets excited to give and receive presents. She loves seeing your face as you open something she chose for you. She also gets excited to find out what you chose for her. She gets a childlike look on her face as she opens a present. I love that look. When it is something that her grandkids have given her that look is multiplied. I learned that she really doesn’t like to wait to open presents. That has not changed one bit. This year was evidence of her anxiousness to open presents. We went to the city where two of our kids live for Christmas this year and because of schedules we were all getting together a couple of days before Christmas to exchange gifts and celebrate. As we were preparing to go on the trip, I got her present out that I had already wrapped. She got all excited and said we should open each other’s present right then. I said I assumed we would take them with us and open them with everyone. The look of disappointment was profound and humorous. I relented and we prepared to open the present we had gotten each other. (By the way I hit a home run with my present to her this year. I’m just sayin’.) I also learned at that first Christmas that Jody gets so excited about the presents that she can hardly help herself from looking for them ahead of time. I think I have had to hide presents more from her than I ever had to with the kids.

We sat down to open our presents. She was working as a nurse’s aide at a Nursing Home, I was a full-time student, playing basketball and working part-time so there were not large purchases made, but that didn’t matter. I don’t honestly remember a single present from that Christmas, but I remember that Christmas. We each chose what we gave with great care. We understood that each gift was truly a sacrifice. We believed that this was the first of many more Christmases. I remember that after opening our presents that we spent some time wondering about the future. Guessing where we would be and what we would be doing in 5 years, in 10 years, in 15 years. I don’t remember going much past 10 or 15 years. Not because we didn’t believe we would last that long, but just because the present was so real, everything so new, that trying to look that far ahead was nearly impossible. We were living moment to moment, hour to hour and day to day. That makes looking too far ahead seem like fantasy.

What we knew was that we loved each other. We were together. We were figuring this marriage thing out a day at a time. We were learning that the person we married wasn’t perfect, that is a big revelation. We were learning that we had a lot of flaws. We were learning what it means to depend on God. We were learning what it means to really love someone and be committed to them for life. We didn’t understand it all, but we were enjoying the journey.

A memorable Christmas to be sure, there have been others that stand out, but this will one will always be near the top of my Christmas memories, because it was the beginning of a fantastic ride. A big change was coming soon …


Post a Comment

<< Home