We’re literally half a world away from family, as we have been since 2007. And to top it off, we’ve asked family not to visit our home in Germany this Christmas.
This selfish decision is so very hard to swallow.
We miss our families. And it hurts to think about the time they will have together during the holidays. Tears well up in my eyes when I think about the food we’ll miss out on, the games we won’t play, the talks we won’t be a part of, and the hugs we won’t give.
In this wonderful season of giving, we decided to be selfish.
David was deployed to Iraq last Christmas. And will, most likely, be deployed to Afghanistan for the next.
Our Christmas celebration will be small and simple. Our days won’t really be all that much different than a day in October or a day in March might be. But it will be ours… completely ours.
And we’ll love on our boys. And talk to family in Dixie on the phone or through Skype.
We’ll play in the snow if it lasts that long and we’ll cook dinner together…as a family of four.
I’ll come up with some elaborate new traditions that will leave us with laughs because they’ll be utter failures. We’ll continue traditions we’ve known since childhood.
Santa will have burnt chocolate chip cookies to eat, because this Momma can’t seem to remember to set the timer.
We’ll sip on hot chocolate and turn the tree lights on every morning because Austin thinks they need to be on.
We’ll look back and realize that there weren’t enough pictures taken. And there won’t be tons of gifts given.
We’ll read the story of Jesus’ birth from Luke and make a Happy Birthday Jesus! cake.
But in our selfish-ness, I pray that our boys feel the love their parents have for them.
I hope to make up for lost time. I want to make memories big enough to last us through the next year of holidays that we’ll most likely spend apart.
I hope to really listen to the gratefulness in Austin’s voice when he opens a present and declares, “Oh! I love it, Mommy! I bery love it!” I want to appreciate the innocent little one that Cade still is when he choses to play with boxes and paper over the clothes neatly folded inside, or the loud toy that was set off to the side.
I pray that David bonds with his boys over snowballs and sleds.
I want to make mistletoe out of paper and hand out kisses as often as I change diapers.
I want to hold onto to our children a little tighter and a little longer. I want to hug my husband for every tear I cried and every second we were apart last Christmas.
I hope to bottle up this time we have together as a family of four…when we’re safe and sound and snuggled up inside our sweet, sweet home…