I went a wassailing with a gay man. Of course I did. The streets of downtown Columbus are lit up with the familiar sights and sounds of Christmas. Families are out shopping, children are bundled up and young couples are holding hands. And my four year old daughter and I are spending the holidays with a man who could not be less interested in me romantically. Yup, that sounds about right.
The holiday season is a time for family, friends and depression. Whether your lovely mother in law is once again hovering telling you how to parent your children or you have no idea what to buy the man in your life who, if he wants something goes ahead and buys it for himself, or the idea of two weeks at home with your precious, adorable, absolutely insane children is enough to make you want to scream…the whole month can drive ya to drinkin’. And I’m not talking about eggnog.
As a single mom, I feel like the pressure is really on. I want my little Princess (Prinny for future reference) to have a truly magical Christmas. To get to live in the world of Santa Claus and make believe just another year longer. So this year, I’ll fight all the other crazy women hyped up on over the counter anti depressants in search of the “perfect” toy. That toy this Christmas is the Barbie doll that Prinny just has to have but doesn’t remotely need. The fact that that poor Barbie will undoubtedly be undressed, hair cut and forgotten about in a closet somewhere within the week is entirely beside the point. And of course, if you buy the Barbie, you have to buy a million little outfits with all the teeny tiny shoes to go along with it. And it’s those same teeny shoes that you will curse in the middle of the night when you get up to turn off the forgotten about Christmas tree lights. Tis the season!
I want to make this Christmas special because every year that she is another year older I get closer to the year she will feel slighted because her Dad isn’t here. Or closer to the year he will decide to actually spend the holidays with her and I will be alone on Christmas morning with nothing but the Barbie shoes to keep me company. So somehow the quest for the perfect present, that one gift that will make her face light up and bring the magic of Christmas into our home, puts off that reality for a little while.
This Christmas Eve will be a night filled with cookie baking (ok…cookie burning), making gingerbread houses that will collapse because we ate all the icing and a midnight run to Wal-Mart when I realize at the last minute that a toy needs some ridiculous size batteries to operate. Then my sweet baby girl will be fast asleep dreaming of Santa and his reindeer and I will stand in the doorway of her room memorizing this incredibly beautiful moment. And in the morning when she runs into the living room and squeals in excitement at the sight of all the teeny tiny Barbie shoes, my heart will fill with joy when I realize yet again just how blessed I am to be her Mommy. Now if only Santa had left a life size Ken doll under the tree for me…