This is a tough question for me. Christmas has always been a go, go, go time in my life, especially when your parents are divorced and remarried!
Most Christmas’ seemed to be making sure we saw all of the families, which for me and my sister was doubled. My fondest Christmas memories as a child come from before my parents split up. I remember being at my grandmother’s house, with my aunt, uncle, cousin, and great aunt. It was nothing special, except for the fact our family felt whole and close. It was warm and full of love. I loved the smells the came from the kitchen. Playing with all her old school wind up Santas that rode their tricycles across the kitchen floor. We would always eat a large meal then of course there was present time, which one of the kids could wait for!
Getting sick at Christmas is the worst.
A week or so before Christmas in 1992 (my sophomore year), I felt a cold coming on. Sore throat, stuffy nose, sinus headache. Nothing to worry about – it felt like a normal cold that typically passes in a day or two. Around day 3, I started running a fever (ugh) and had to miss my mid-terms at school (cool!)…and then things got real.
Millimeter by millimeter, month by month, one attempt after another…eventually I could reach it.
I don’t remember how old I was, but I do remember when I could finally touch the top of the doorframe leading out of the living room of the house I grew up in. Along with a column of pencil marks on that same doorframe indicating my height on each birthday, it was noticeable evidence of my growth. The smudges on that doorframe and several others in that house that accumulated over the years also gave testimony to the continued growth (and the seemingly constant dirty hands) of a young kid.