All I Want For Christmas

My wish list to Santa is full of intangible items not easily purchased in a mall.

Maybe it’s because I’ve looked at the faded, blurry picture so many times, but I can still feel the shivers of excitement as my five-year-old self spotted Chatty Cathy atop the pile of presents reigning as Queen, resplendent in her white satin dress and halo of golden hair. Best of all, you could pull a string and she would talk-pure magic! The other presents faded into oblivion; the doll was everything, a paragon of perfection and I loved her for years.

I was at total loss for an answer when my husband asked me, 54 years post Chatty Cathy, what I want for Christmas this year. I’m in the fortunate situation of having everything I need in life; a roof over my head, running water and electricity, plenty of food in the pantry and clothes to wear. But for most middle-class Americans, Christmas is more about want than needs. Aren’t we the lucky ones? This year has been a tough one for me, but I’ve tried my best to be good so Santa, if you’re listening, please try to fulfill the wishes on my list!

  1. As trite as it may sound, I want peace on earth and goodwill to men. Peace on earth is a big favor to ask so I’ll happily settle for goodwill to men. I long for kindness- simple kindness. It may seem a foreign idea in the current cultural climate, but I believe each person can have an impact, if only in a small way. Think before you speak harshly, say a kind word. Let someone go ahead of you in line or pay for someone’s coffee. If you have resources, donate to those in need. Kindness can be contagious; strive to be the carrier and create an epidemic.
  2. Could your elves please concoct a magical spell to erase my wrinkles, errant hairs, crepey skin and all the other lumps, bumps and weird growths that somehow appeared the day I turned fifty?
  3. Eradication of all forms of child abuse, sexual, physical, emotional and verbal, would be the best gift. I look at my grandson who is surrounded by people that love and protect him, and I fervently wish every child was born into that situation. Can you imagine the societal repercussions if every single child were cherished and cared for; no more pain, no more neglect, no more lives ended too soon and too violently?
  4. A few days snowed in with no internet connection, no television and no cell phone connection. Some may think that’s crazy, but how I would love a few days of complete silence surrounded by good books, a fire burning in the fireplace and cookies baking in the oven!
  5. Equitable health care for all. For my Christmas gift, I would love for every person, but especially every child to have the same access to excellent health care. It’s an embarrassment and a moral crime that those who are born into less fortunate circumstances in the United States of America have a greater chance of suffering and even dying because of inadequate health care.
  6. Hideaway pizza, tacos and all cookies (yes, cookies again, I may have just a tiny problem), pies and cakes to be absolved of calories and henceforth be health foods. What a present that would be for me!
  7.  Over 15 million kids under the age of 18 live in poverty in America. Poverty has many accompanying issues; high drop-out rates, high teen pregnancy rates and high incarceration rates. Santa, can you please bring a solution to poverty, food insecurity and homelessness?

The items on my list aren’t easily purchased, the desires of my heart are the intangibles. As Antoine de Saint-Exupery so eloquently stated in The Little Prince, “And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” I think my husband may be out of luck shopping for me this year; the mall seems to be fresh out of peace on earth, goodwill to men, but I’m still holding out hope for Santa’s magic!

Categories: Grand Life