To my son Tommy,
Of course everyone knows the true Christmas miracle that we celebrate, the birth of Christ. Nothing is more personal and nothing can top that, but occasionally during the Christmas season, we receive gifts of precious little miracles that touch our hearts and warm our insides. We received a couple of these extras this year.
Grandpa Leo was not supposed to be home for Christmas. He was supposed to be in a nursing home rehabilitation center after his last seizure on the 15th. For some reason, perhaps through divine providence, he got to the point that he could get himself up and walk enough that we could bring him home and attempt to take care of him here. So we did, and on the 22nd we took him home. So far, so good, though honestly I pray on an hourly schedule for everything to go well with our decision. Strength, endurance, dedication, devotion, compassion, and sweet time... all gifts given to us to keep him here this Christmas season.
On Christmas Day, we received another amazing gift! Your mother woke with no pain in her hip! We have no idea why, we had no idea how long it would last (though this morning her pain has come back), we simply just were so excited for the short lived break. An amazing respite to hopefully energize our faith and hope that this extreme pain that she feels daily, this too shall pass.
And finally, the Friday before Christmas was the last day we saw your eyeglasses. I spent the past few days searching and searching for these lost glasses. I dug down, deep, and I mean really deep, into my soul and summoned the self control and patience and forgiveness needed to keep calm. I remembered back to the first time I lost my glasses for any significant period of time. The fear of God was put into me along with all those unhealthy emotions of despair, and anger, and hopelessness, and sorrow and disappointment for letting my parents down. Of course the first time I lost my glasses was not around Christmas, and with your mother's help and guidance, I did not lose my temper and ruin Christmas for all. But I did keep looking, in nearly every moment of spare time in the house, almost obsessively. Finally, this morning, it paid off and there, on the blankets on the chest at the foot of your Nana Jeanne's bed, I found your glasses. Surprisingly, as you put them back on your head, you tolerated the staples I used to make sure they would never be lost again. There wasn't as much blood as I thought there would be. I kid. I kid.
So these are a couple of the Christmas miracles we experienced. To many, these are just everyday goings on. They don't see the miraculous. They are those who demand to be awed and treat God as a magician whose job it is to convince them of his power and existence by doing what is not humanly possible. They want to be wowed and expect their rewards to be grandiose beyond their dreams, as if from Aladdin's lamp. Yet I see the awesome every day; I see these miracles every day! They exists in the smallest of actions, the smallest of gifts, the smallest of reprieves, the smallest little touch, and in the smallest gesture of love. I do not need a d jinn to grant me my wildest wish, I need to humble myself and reawaken to all the gifts already given. I realize that I, and my actions, guided by God's hand, might even be an integral part of any miracle for myself or for others.
Appreciate the miraculous every day of your life, my son, and you will realize how blessed of a life you are already living, even when you have lost your glasses and cannot see.
Sincerely with love from your dad,