This year my goal is to be present and find presents to make other people happy.

I won’t be looking for a lot of happy for me. My proclamation of “best Christmas ever” that I made to my friends last year haunts me. It wasn’t the song that was written for me about surviving hard times. It wasn’t the affirmations folded up and ready to be put into the candles I was going to be able to make. Nope. It was that I thought every gift was so thoughtful. I was touched to be known so well.

Don’t I feel stupid. The whole thoughtfulness was disguised to hide how every single facet of my life was a scam, a sham and a fraud. I wasn’t known or heard because every part of what I hold dear: trust, partnership, honesty, my family and security was being betrayed. A song about surviving hard times together when only one of us knew we were in hard times is so ridiculous and so horribly cruel that I can’t breathe when I think about it.

So I won’t think about it.

Instead I’ll think about what I can do for other people. I have high hopes for what I can do for others. I wish that meant solving childhood hunger or something equally important but I am
not that…well evidentially I am not that smart because I can’t think of a single word to insert here…My point is that I am going to make people smile in my own way. If I make others smile than my heart will be lighter.

I started yesterday with a hand made boob cake for my friends birthday. There is a reason I don’t bake. A very good reason. I stink at it being the main one. But she’s has a hard year and it’s her birthday and by cracky I wanted to make her smile. So I did it. It was atrocious but tasted okay. That was all beside the point. The bigger and better point is that the cake and the story made her smile. That smile started my Christmas.

Years ago my friend said, “Libby you know how to make those?” referring to the big, whimsical wreaths being sold on our intranet. Puhleeze. Way beyond my skill set. She told me to learn because she wanted one and couldn’t afford the prices they were charging.

Skip ahead. Thanks to my mom I learned how to make the wreaths! Today I gave her the wreath she wanted so long ago. I thought she might as well get to enjoy it this Christmas versus getting it for Christmas and not getting to enjoy it until next Christmas. And so she got it today. And she was happy. So happy. Her happy made me happy. Later she stopped by my office and admitted that she had started her day in not so good a way but that her wreath changed all that.

And I am not done yet.

I’ve got an email out about a cool gift that might mean something to someone. (Thanks Theresa.) The big kids are giving up Santa for an adventure because they too are skittish about this year. I hope to do a few little things so that people know that they matter to me. Thinking about that helps me to not think about anything else.

Christmas isn’t about presents. I know that. But Christmas is about letting others know they are loved and cared for and thought of. I can do that. I want to do that. I will do that. I’ll enjoy it. And having the chance to make others happy will keep my heart happy.


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