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Day 35: A slow start to Christmas morning

December 26, 2011

“Hey Mom?” I heard my three-year old say from the backseat. “When we get home, I’m going STRAIGHT to bed. I am soooo tired.”

He emphasized the word straight, said in a fashion that I use when busting out threats to curb bad behavior. Voluntarily going to bed isn’t something you hear from Calin everyday, or ever, really. It was precious. It was also after midnight. We made it home just in time to set out cookies and milk before Santa reached Eastown.

When I rolled over Christmas morning, the clock said 9:30 a.m. In all my 26 Christmases I don’t think I’ve ever slept this late. It’s even more bizarre with a little kid in the other room. Or is he? I thought back to last Christmas (or maybe it was his birthday). He had opened all of his presents by himself. Worried that I’d miss seeing his face light up in delight as he unwrapped the Power Rangers and ‘motor dirt bike’ he’d been asking for since November, or drink the milk that had been sitting out for nine hours, or God forbid, unwrap presents that weren’t his (I hate wrapping presents), I popped out of bed and hurried to the living room.

No tattered paper. Stockings still stuffed. Glass of milk still half-full. I walked into his bedroom to see him sleeping soundly. He didn’t budge when I told him Santa came. So I made coffee, got my camera ready and turned on Christmas music. When I tried again at 10 a.m., he rolled out of bed and staggered over to the Christmas tree. It took him opening a gift or two rather daintily before he finally woke up, came to life and the paper-tearing madness began.

Maybe next year I’ll have a house that I can entertain in and host the Christmas Eve gathering. Calin can go to bed a little earlier and maybe, just maybe, he’ll come bounding into my bedroom at 6 a.m. like a normal kid.

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