Culturally, as I think most of us agree, Christmas is all about giving. But the by-product of giving is “wanting.” Children wait hours in line to visit Santa Claus for the privilege of sitting on his knee and telling him the name of the toy (like a Red Ryder Air Rifle) they most desire for Christmas. Families exchange wish lists that usually read like shopping lists. Offices throw Secret Santa or Yankee Swap parties where gift-giving can be political or stressful.
This Christmas though, I feel as though I’ve broken through the glass ceiling of wanting. I don’t desire anything material. And what I do want, I’ve already received. My girlfriend Juliet moved to Denver this month. We’ve had a semi-long distance relationship for eight months, and now she lives five minutes away from me. I cannot describe what a joy it is to see each other anytime we like, pop in and play with the kids, or stop by to give her a kiss just because I feel like it.
In fact, their proximity allowed Juliet and the kids to come over to my loft to help decorate my Christmas tree (and now all the ornaments are on the lowest branches where the nearly 3-year old twins, Mark and Maddie, could reach). I’m even up to date on little Mark’s latest owwie—“Frosty the Snowman did it.”
There’s nothing I want in my Christmas stocking except for all of those little moments that add up to make me part of a family. Like Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, I just want a place where–despite my oddities, as plain as the nose on my face–I fit in all the same.