Plus, we all gave gifts to each other, which with nine kids and one set of parents, adds up to one gigantic pile of presents. The "Santa" gifts weren't even the icing on the cake; they were a curlicue on the icing on the cake.
I was probably young enough to still (theoretically) believe in Santa when I became irritated at a school Christmas program. The eighth graders performed a skit where Santa brought every single present for the kids. Every. Single. One.
That's not how it works!
Gifts come from SOMEONE.
They do NOT magically drop from the sky.
There is NO Santa Claus!
I'm reconsidering that last sentence these days.
Maybe there's no red-suited dude fighting polar bears for the last floating bit of ice at the rapidly warming North Pole. But I can look at my life and see gifts dropped on my head that I didn't ask for, didn't deserve, and didn't reciprocate.
Those of us who are writers have been given this gift, and it is an incredibly precious one. I have written things, imperfect as they were, that have made people laugh and other things that have made them cry. I cannot begin to tell you what that means to me. Stories unite us as humans.
I can see where the people around me added to the pile of gifts around this one. I remember the many stories my siblings read to me. I remember how in the house I was raised, there was something to read by every chair. I've been blessed with good libraries. Fellow writers encouraged me.
Still, on some level, I feel like this was dropped on my head, like a present from Santa. The work I've done, the support I've had from others has added to it, but this one gift just arrived from the universe somehow, and I didn't do a thing to deserve it.
When you write, you might believe your gift of words came from God, or the universe, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, for all I know. You can even believe it came from Santa Claus, if you'd like. It doesn't matter.
It's a gift we get to open every time we grab our pens and open our notebooks. It's new and different every time. Could it get any better?
With that, have a blessed and peaceful holiday season, however you might celebrate it.