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The Ornament

by Deborah Cruz

This Christmas morning was a little different than our previous Christmases have been. The entire year has been a little “different”, since the Big Guy has been working away from home. It’s been a difficult transition to go from having a very hands on partner/father to one who is no longer here on a daily basis. Due to all this upheaval and unpredictability of the past few months, I felt like the holidays crept up on me and knocked me over the head with a boulder. Nothing has felt right with the Big Guy gone. This situation has caused finances to be off because of maintaining separate residences, I didn’t have the time I normally would have had to go shopping and what not because I had no one here to watch the girls, the ebb and flow of our very existence has been out of whack this past year. So, it was no surprise that this Christmas morning, things felt peculiar.

I woke up and I knew I wasn’t going to be opening any gifts,that was no big deal, I had accepted that fact. Normally, I have an abundance of gifts to open. But that’s OK. Don’t feel sorry for me. The Big Guy bought me a really spectacular diamond band that I’ve been wanting ( last month) and my Mom bought me my BlogHer ticket, so believe me I didn’t need anything to open. And, to be completely honest,  having the Big Guy home for 2 weeks consecutively is the most precious gift  that I could ever have asked for or wanted.If you could see the excitement in the girls eyes knowing that when they wake up in the morning, their Daddy would be there.You’d know, I want for nothing. If you could know the peace it brings my heart to have the Big Guy within arms reach, you would realize that the gift of his presence was priceless to all of us.


After the girls opened all of their gifts, and the Big Guy had opened the gifts that the girls had picked out for him, there was 1 little gift that we had all forgotten about. That is all of us,with the exception of Bella, had forgotten about. Bella makes a leap under the tree and says in her most sheepish little big girl voice,”Mommy, you forgot about YOUR gift!” I was stumped because I knew, for a fact, the Big Guy was told not to buy me anything (living apart strains the finances). Bella produced the sweetest, plain white bakery bag with a homemade card on it. I had forgotten about the “gift” she had made for me on the last day of school before the break. The gift that had been sitting under the tree for a week and I had been given strict orders could not be opened until Christmas morning. Bella:”Open it,Mommy”as she placed it into my hands. I followed her instructions, as I opened that simple white bakery bag and inside was the most beautiful ( to me) handmade ornament that I have ever laid my gaze upon. At that moment, sitting in front of the Christmas tree with my girls and the Big Guy next to me, I realized that I had the most amazing gift in the world..I had a all the love my heart could hold and then I cried. I wept for the happiness of being blessed with so much love and I wept with sadness knowing that we’ve lost almost an entire year together.After all was said and done, that sweet little angel ornament in the plain white bakery bag is the most meaningful gift I have ever received. Thank you Bella and Gabi for coming into my world and putting things into perspective!!Mommy loves you!

What’s the most meaningful gift that you’ve received?

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Natalie 2010/12/29 - 1:15 am

Awww, that made me melt. My Olivia gave me a handmade ornament this year and it made me sob. SOB.

Truthful Mommy 2010/12/29 - 1:21 am

I know,I was crying like a baby!We're talking full on breathing funny,tears streaming crying.It's the most beautiful ,sweetest, most honest thing anyone has ever given me!I adore it!I will put that thing on my tree until I die!

Gigi 2010/12/29 - 9:31 am

that is awesome. Gifts from my kids, and their little notes, are so treasured!

Krysta 2010/12/29 - 10:42 am

That is absolutely precious!

Bruna 2010/12/29 - 11:32 am

What a sweet ornament. Love it! Your daughters sound like absolute sweethearts and, like you said, just having their love and that of the Big Guy, is more gift than anything you could ever open from a box! You have the sweetest, cutest little family:)))

Day 2 Day Living 2010/12/29 - 1:11 pm

You like making me cry don't ya?
That is so sweet! Having family for the holidays would be awesome. I wish I could've had all of mine together.

parenting ad absurdum 2010/12/29 - 1:15 pm

I've got an ornament that Jack made in school for me last year that I feel the same way about – as a kid, you don't understand when people say "the best gifts are the ones you make yourself" but as a mom, I totally get it now!!

Kelly 2010/12/29 - 2:35 pm

IN 2004 my mom bought these gold ball ornaments from ABC. They would hold a small picture and you could record onto it. So she put a picture of Cameron (then age 6) in each of the twelve ornaments. He sang "Santa Clause is coming to town" twelve times that day ending with Merry Christmas…..mine says Mommy and Daddy, my brothers said "Uncle Brian and Jessica" my grandsmothers said "Nana" eitherway 12 different people recieved an ornament that year. I play it several times each year to hear that sweet little voice that is now so grown up! I also have the one that was my grandmothers since she passed….that's one of my favorite ornaments…but I have many that I smile about when I put them on the tree he made each one of them.

Truthful Mommy 2010/12/29 - 10:01 am

It was definitely the best gift I have ever gotten!

Truthful Mommy 2010/12/29 - 10:47 am

It was.I swear it made the entire crap year apart worth it.My girls amaze me!

Mommyfriend Lori 2010/12/30 - 1:39 pm

Sniff, sniff, wahhhhh! Preciousness!!! I love this post, perfect and simple and representative of what Christmas is all about.

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