Thursday, December 20, 2007

What The Grinch Stole, The Robbers Gave Back

On Sunday after church, while Bubba(6) was still in his suit and Mr. Yuke(4) was in a white shirt and his underwear ("Call me 'Captain Underpants!"), they went down to the forbidden zone and rummaged through the toys that are out of rotation. (We rotate the toys in the playroom every couple of weeks so that everything gets played with and cleaned on a regular basis. The toys not in the playroom are on shelves in the basement.) Somewhere down there they found swimming goggles. I do not know why we have these. We have never purchased goggles. Ever. Anyway, the obvious course of action when you are in a suit and goggles is to be a bank robber. I didn't know this. I saw them tiptoe-ing up the stairs and inquired what they were sneaking off to do. They turned around, fixed their goggle stares on me, and whispered, "We're robbers." I had a hard time keeping a straight face, not expecting two sets of goggles to be looking at me. When they were upstairs, Husband said, "I don't know what's wrong with this generation. When I was a kid" (doesn't he sound old?) "we always wanted to be the HERO." I answered, "Well they usually do too. But today they couldn't, OBVIOUSLY." Him- "Why not?" Me- "Because 'hey- goggles.'"
You know that I've been under the weather. Extreme Cinnamon Rolls, PT, Husband out of town, exhaustion and morning sickness that lasts all day long (that's the worst misnomer in the English language), kids with flu, threatening miscarriage of twins, etc. We didn't have Thanksgiving really and I just barely did the shopping for Christmas, and we probably aren't going to eat much on Christmas either. If I'm not in the middle of a miscarriage, I will still be sick as a dog and cooking food is the enemy.

We have not put up our tree yet. It's sad and I've missed it but I can only do so much. Right now, "so much" consists of waking up at some point in the a.m., changing diapers, fixing bottles, feeding children, drinking water, catching up on laundry, besides making sure all the kids have clean pajamas to wear to school for "Polar Express Day" and gifts to exchange for their school and church classes. I've got my wife to murder and Gilder to frame for it. I'm swamped. Oh wait- no. I don't have a wife. But I have had all that other stuff going on in addition to the normal December madness. Really, all things considered, I've been pretty okay with not having the tree up. This week was the first chance we've really had to get it out and now- what with being COMPLETELY distracted with worrying about the babies, I just don't feel like it is worth the energy (that I do not have anyway) to drag all that stuff out for just one week. I've pondered the possibility that Christmas is about the Savior anyway so maybe those nice, pretty reminders are not completely necessary and it might be nice to have an old fashioned, spartan Christmas. Well, yesterday someone informed me that not having a Christmas tree is bordering on CHILD ABUSE. I am not making this up. I pointed out that maybe if she thought about all those children who are regularly beaten by their parents, she would realize that not having a Christmas tree is a FAR CRY from that. She asked, "Well how would you feel if you were a kid without a Christmas tree?" I answered, "It came without ribbons, boxes, or bags.... It came. Somehow... it came just the same." (How the Grinch Stole Christmas- Dr. Seuss) No. In spite of the reference to her favorite Christmas book, she would not concede. ("It's IMPORTANT to them!") I told her that I honestly don't think they'll care. I'm pretty sure that all they care about is GETTING STUFF and that isn't going to be a problem. She answered loftily that it is a decision you're just going to have to make. Just like that, with the italics and everything. And now- even though I was fine with not having a tree before (because as I said, I can only do so much), now I feel like garbage.

I was wondering tonight how I am going to focus on The Greatest Gift/the Savior this coming week when every corner of my mind is completely consumed with worrying- and trying not to think about the twins. Then Husband started singing lullaby-hymns to Muhloo(8m). I thought of that little baby in his mother's arms; the one who made it possible for me to hold all my wonderful children in mine. The baby who made it a reality that I will know these children someday, whether in this life or the next. And suddenly, I knew.

All my preoccupation with the possibilities would not matter in the least if it were not for the baby born in Bethlehem.
Merry Christmas.
"goggles" by Julie K in Taiwan; "Golden Christmas" by krisdecurtis


Tiercy said...

Very insightful! I saw your tree with the white lights last night when I was driving by. One thing I forgot to tell you about my Christmas miscarriages (and c-sections)...they enhanced my understanding to how truly the birth of our Savior is a miracle.


Cassadie said...

We don't have a tree up either. I guess we're "abusing" little Jack, too. Oh, and we didn't even buy him any gifts (!!). We figure this is the only year we can get away with it. Besides, we all have too much stuff anyway. Merry Christmas!

Tiercy said...

Wii, fortunately, are not having technical difficulties. Wii will have to play some time.

You made LOL. Yes, I am poaching! Why should I go to the trouble of searching, when your ornament picture is so beautiful and perfect.

Rebecca said...

Beautiful blog Amy. Did you really quote Dr. Seuss on the fly? I'm impressed. One year without a Christmas tree is a far cry from child abuse, or neglect or whatever. It sounds like you are doing your best to me and that's all anyone can do. I am happy for you that you could find the true meaning of Christmas in all of this. Love you. Merry Christmas!

Sharon/mom said...

you're amazing! I remember reading an article in the Ensign when I had two babies. It talked about doing what you can and doing what is most important. I vowed then to not worry about the unimportant things to me and focus on the important things to me. I wouldn't say I have been perfect at it, but you know what my house looked like when I had all six kids at home. I think you are good at doing the important! Don't let a goofy neighbor or friend do that to you!!!