This morning, after having my son wake me up periodically throughout the entire night, I finally decided that yes, we could call 5:05am "morning" and got up to see what Santa brought. I watched him open gifts, play with this and that for a few minutes before abandoning it for something else and then eventually he wandered off into his room.
I sat sipping coffee, talking to Gino and looking at everyone else's Christmas on Facebook. This Christmas is a little hard on me. It is literally the first Christmas I'm not spending with my parents due to sickness in our family. The first time in 38 years. I guess I'm lucky that I had 37 years of uninterrupted family time each Christmas before this happened and, if we are all lucky, we will all be together next year.
As I looked at Facebook the little "memories" notification came up that allowed me to look at posts on Christmas day years past. That's when the embarrassment set in. The realization that just 6 short years ago (who knows, probably even more recently than that), I used to be one of those females I roll my eyes at. On Christmas day 2009, there it was...a vague passive aggressive post about how I was going to ask Santa for new shoes instead of a man next year.
It all came flooding back to me. How unstable I was. How unfocused I was on my son. On myself for that matter. And the guy I was chasing?....That's the worst part! He wasn't just not worth chasing, I was nuts to want a life with this man. I will leave it at that because this isn't about him or any other unworthy guy I chased during that dark time in my life. They were symptoms of a bigger problem. My lack of self-worth. My need for distraction.
So on to what this IS about. I think where my head was 6 years ago...and where it should've been. I was surrounded by my family. We were all healthy. I was in my early 30s instead of my late 30s. I was freshly out of a 12 year marriage that was toxic for the both of us and that was the beginning of what I should've perceived as my fresh new start. My little boy was only 16 months old. What I wouldn't give to be able to rewind to that time today. I wouldn't want to permanently rewind time because, despite any unhappy aspects of my life at the moment, I am thankful for where I am right now. I would just want to step back and turn my focus to all those people most precious to me and soak up every moment of Christmas cheer with them. Even though I remember how much I enjoyed seeing my son open his gifts, I'd love to go back and watch him again without the wasted thoughts of a passing infatuation in the back of my mind distracting me.
I'm all about lessons and using them to help me grow. This lesson is definitely not lost on me. Even though today is sad in that I am worried about family members (oh, and I'm sick), this is still a moment that I could possibly look back on in the future and regret not being fully present...except that isn't my life anymore. I am not going to claim to be fully squeaky clean, Buddha-ish, present 100% of the time but I am damn near close!
This morning as I sat alone watching PJ open his first gift (Gino staggered in to join us around gift #3), I wasn't focused on the fact that I was sitting alone with my son on Christmas morning when I am usually surrounded by a room full of laughter and noise. I focused, instead, of that exact moment. That imperfect, exhausted, sick, uncertain, almost lonely moment that I would never ever get back later in my life. I barely even took pictures because I was so focused on that special, sweet moment. The way the lights from the tree reflected in his wide blue eyes when he looked up from each gift. The excitement as he tore open a present and almost threw it aside to open the next. He will never ever be 7 years old on Christmas again. He pretty much knows something very suspicious is up with this whole Santa thing. I feel like I almost slowed down time by being so ultra focused on every precious detail of this morning. Experience each moment as though it could be my last...because it could.
This is my life and 38 years of it are gone. I have no idea how many years (or maybe even just hours) I have left. I have spent so many minutes, hours, DAYS focused on things other than THE MOMENT and those moments are gone forever and I probably need to think about how much I regret that but...I just don't have time!