January 7, 2017
‘Twas a few nights after Christmas, when all through the house . . . the creatures are indeed stirring. Every bed in the house overflows with relatives – aunts and uncles and cousins and grandparents – who have traveled long distances to celebrate this holiday season. But none of us can sleep on this not-so-silent night. The little ones are tossing and turning and squirming fitfully in their beds, refusing to succumb to sleep. Their wild footsteps echo off the hardwood floors in the hallways. Their agitated cries ensure that none of us will be settling our brains for a long winter’s nap. At least not anytime soon.
This is not exactly the image of my home and family I was hoping you would see when you come. Just a few days earlier, we are all cleaning and sweeping and polishing in anticipation of your arrival. We look out the window frequently, waiting for you to come. The hour gets later, the clock ticking well past the usual bedtime. Finally, you come! And out in the driveway there arises such a clatter, the littles ones spring from their beds to see what is the matter.
Which is fine, just this once. I want them to see you. While you are here, I hope that you will get to know these precious children who are living in my home. I want you to love them and treasure them as much as I do! During your visit, I hope that the bonds between you and them will be formed and strengthened. May they find in you, unconditional love and acceptance. May they find, in your warmth and tenderness, a sense of belonging and connectedness.
The hallway soon fills with rolling suitcases and zippered jackets, excited laughter and lively conversation. So wonderful to see you! I’m glad you made it safely! How was your trip? Do you want anything to eat? Understandably, it takes a while for everyone to settle in.