I haven’t had much to say as of late. It isn’t that I haven’t been tempted; it’s that I’ve been tempted in the wrong ways. There are so many words being put out there by so many, and the best I can say is there isn’t anything I can add at the moment that would be the least bit productive. So, with that in mind, I’m switching gears and sharing with you all one of my first Christmas memories.
A hospital is really not the best place in the world to spend Christmas. This is about a million times more true if you happen to be four years old. This is the rather dismal state of affairs I found myself in. It had been a tough year for me all around, to say the least. Among other things, I had my left eye enucleated due to a staph infection, and this and other issues kept me at Stanford University Hospital pretty much nonstop for a lot of that year. Things were not as enlightened then as they are now where hospital stays for children were concerned. Visiting hours were strictly enforced, which meant that many nights were very hard for me. Mercifully, I don’t retain many conscious memories of that time. But I do remember Christmas morning, for the right reasons.
I woke up that morning to the sound of wheels on the linoleum floor. This was a sound I was all too familiar with—but this time, it wasn’t the food tray or a medical cart pushed by someone about to give me yet another one of those infernal shots. Accompanying the wheels were the voices of my mom and dad, my sister, and my cousin who was living with us at the time. They had rolled in a red wagon full of my presents. All these years later, I couldn’t tell you what a single one of those presents were—except the wagon, of course. I suspect I was the same, bratty four-year-old I always was. Hey, give me a break, remember where I was! What I do remember, these 2 score and 7 years on, is the sound of the wheels on the floor, and the voices of my family, which meant I wasn’t alone. I think it’s important to remember that many times the best Christmas memories have nothing to do with the awesome gifts one gets. Sometimes it’s all about the experiences that don’t actually cost anything.
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