As I lay here tonight, on Christmas Eve, I can’t help but think about how angry I was two years ago when my husband went to bed early. He hadn’t bought very many presents, he’d wrapped even less, and Santa still had to come.
But there was Vance, fast asleep in our bed by 10 pm. The kids were up much later, and I…well, I stayed up to make the magic happen.
I was so angry that night. I felt like I’d been mistreated; unappreciated. Maybe even taken advantage of. I remember taking a picture of him sleeping and thinking about posting it with some snarky comment about how “Dad makes the Christmas magic” or something equally awful. I didn’t, but in my heart I fumed.
Vance, who woke up hours before me on a regular basis to go to work to support our family, had fallen asleep, hours past his regular bedtime. And instead of appreciating him for it, I begrudgingly filled the stockings, stuck the presents under the tree and went to bed angry.
Christmas morning I still hadn’t let it go. Of course, I hadn’t told him I was mad. He should have just known, right? But I was passive aggressive and ruined the morning for myself.
That afternoon I finally let it go and we went to the park for an epic Christmas Day Nerf battle. It was awesome. The entire family played and we laughed and laughed and laughed. Vance was good at shooting all of us but he got shot some, too.
I had no idea that would be his last Christmas. It never even occurred to me as a possibility. Nevertheless, it was.
Now, two Christmases later, I bought all the gifts, wrapped them, and I’m waiting for the kids to fall asleep so I can put the stockings under the tree.
But Vance isn’t sleeping in our bed. His side is empty. I keep thinking that I wasted our last Christmas Eve being angry about such a stupid thing as a very tired, very hard working man going to sleep. Sigh.
If you’re lucky enough to be sharing your bed with someone you love tonight, don’t waste it. Don’t be angry that he’s sleeping while you’re still up. That he didn’t get you what you wanted for Christmas even though you put it directly in your Amazon cart and all he had to do was buy it. Let that crap go. Because it doesn’t matter. It really, really doesn’t matter.
What matters is that you still have a chance to laugh together in the morning. That maybe next year he’ll buy you a kick butt gift that blows you away. That tomorrow you can kiss him goodnight and use his warm body to heat up your frozen feet. What matters is the moments you get to spend with him. Don’t waste them. Trust me. Don’t. Waste. One. Minute.