I cooked and cleaned and shopped and listened and supported and made a Christmas Eve party for my brother’s family, a big Christmas for us. Lots and lots of work.
At Christmas dinner, my mother started to tuck in without anyone saying grace. I spoke up, and she began to mumble something about thankfulness.
I stopped her and said that while I thought gratiude was important — we should have that attitude every day — that Christmas was for miracles, for the magic that the Puritans feared when they banned it. I started to talk about moving beyond expectation, about the light from within, and such.
My sister worked hard to listen.
My mother started cutting her meat. She tuned out.
I saw this and started mumbling, trying to indicate to my sister that she should look at my mother. When my sister saw my mother ignoring the grace, I stopped.
My father, sweet & slightly confused, said “Amen,” even though I never got to that point.
Once I was quiet, my mother started telling a banal story about some orphans from Kahzikstan and their first Christmas here in their new church. I just sat and ate without grace.
She later sincerely thanked me for everything I do, everything. Just not everything I am, everything inside of me, which doesn’t deserve grace.
No grace for you. It’s Christmas.
Time to go take out the garbage. The truck comes early, you know.