As a Dad and Husband, Christmas brings a mix of emotions for me. It is a very stressful time in some ways with having to assure the shopping is complete (well, that is mostly the Mrs., I can't take too much credit there), all the decorations are up, family time is planned and Santa Claus is on his way.
On the other hand, there is a lot of joy and excitement knowing we get to see our families, even though both my wife and I have huge families and the logistics of it can be a royal pain in the butt. Then there is knowing that our young kids are stoked about the holiday and that we did a good job making sure their Christmas wishes come true. Their happiness tops my Christmas List. Second is I really need new underwear, C'mon Santa!
For me the most fulfilling part is watching the excitement of others, especially the kids, when they open their gifts and get to experience what we did when we were kids. Sure it is great to get a cool gift or something you need, but the best part is being the giver of the joy.
Last year we got the kids their first ever baseball bats. They were six and four. They were so excited and loved going to the batting cages in January and February. We made it a weekly event where we would all go and the kids had a blast and made some great improvements. This year my son asked me if I thought Santa was going to bring him a bat again. That made me smile. I can see he is developing a like for the game. Maybe not a love yet like I have but he likes the game which makes me happy.
As a kid all I ever really wanted was sports related stuff. Mostly baseball and hockey, Yankees and Hartford Whalers (until the darn team moved), plus Packers stuff. There was nothing like opening up that new ball glove or bat, hockey stick or skates. Or even Ken Griffey Jr. '95 for Super Nintendo. Funny story, I found my Super Nintendo last year at my Mom's house with that game still installed and it still works!
Another great thing about Christmas and New Years is we are making the turn for the spring and that means baseball season; More time in the batting cages, Spring Training, little league tryouts, longer days and before we know it, the season is just weeks away. Spring is my third and last Christmas Wish. I know it is far off, but it's still closer than it was yesterday!
I hope everyone has a wonderful, happy and healthy Christmas. If there are stressors in your life, like we all have, let them go for a couple of days, be grateful for what you do have and be optimistic about the future.
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