I’m the mom of a college student, and since I am, thankfully, still in possession of my two front teeth, all I want for Christmas these days pretty much comes down to a few simple wishes.
Of course I know I have to check my expectations at the (Christmas-wreathed) door. Of course I know my college student will have her own ideas about what she wants her holiday to look like. Of course I know the Norman Rockwell-esque vision I have dancing in my head is much more likely to end up looking like a Jackson Pollock painting.
What I Want for Christmas this Year
But like a child writing an extravagant, uncensored letter to Santa, this list is really all I want for Christmas now that a big piece of my heart is living somewhere else most of the time.
- To send my college student this text: “what meals do you want me to make for you while you’re on break?”
- “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” playing on a repeat loop.
- My student’s favorite ornaments saved for her to hang on the tree.
- To feel like a kid on Christmas because my kid is coming home for Christmas.
- To put fuzzy sheets on a bed that hasn’t been slept in for months.
- Stockings hung by the chimney with care in hopes that the owners of those stockings soon will all be there.
- To get this text from my college student: “heading home.”
- To bake batches of holiday cookies that never last long enough to get stale.
- For everyone who calls me “mom” to be asleep under my roof.
- To make a double batch of pancakes on a Saturday morning…and still run out.
- More laundry in the basket, more coats hanging by the door, more shoes piled on the mud room floor, more cell phones charging at every outlet not being used by a Christmas light.
- The sound of all my children’s voices laughing together in the same room.
- To hug my student, just because I can.
- To think to myself that I need to text my student to tell her something…and then realize I can just walk into the living room and tell her in person.
- To go to bed at night without leaving my phone on because all the people who might need to call me at 3 a.m. are within earshot.
- To need to buy more milk, more cereal, more bananas, more laundry detergent, more toilet paper, and more—much, much more—pizza.
- “Silent Night” played in a noisy house.
- A Christmas movie marathon with the whole cast.
- Family game night with all the players.
- For the number of plates (from the special Christmas dish set) I get out for dinner and the number of people in my immediate family to be the same number.
- To do everything on our “next time you’re home” list.
And I’d like to forget, just for a moment, that my college student is home, then pass by a room and see her there and feel like I’ve just found a gift under the tree on Christmas morning that I’d forgotten I asked for.
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