12/24/2006 5:47 AM PST
Last night I awoke early, about 5:15, with a smile on my face. For an instant I couldn't remember why I should be smiling but then it came rushing into my mind. I had been dreaming-- the place was a big old auditorium, like a school gym only this was (I now recognize) our local Grange hall, an ancient building, recently remodeled. I was emcee'ing a part of the program which involved introducing various members of the audience to come to the front and lead the group in a favorite song of their choosing. The last song leader to be introduced was my mother whom I introduced as (of course) "my mom". Mom climbed onto the folding table and sat cross legged (something I never remember her doing, but dreams are like that). Her song was "Let me call you Sweetheart" which she entered into with gusto (something I do remember her doing-- anything and everything was "with gusto"). She had a beautiful voice but an indifferent sense of tune and rhythm (like my own) for which lack she made up with volume (as do I). She was young middle-aged in my dream but with the beautiful flowing black hair which I remember from my childhood. As she ended I put an arm around her and helped her from the table as the group applauded. That was when I awoke with the smile on my face and the chorus, melody and lyrics, humming through my mind-- "Let me call you "Sweetheart," I'm in love with you".
It's Christmas Eve today, a day during which I always smile and am in love with the whole world. Remembering the sense of wonder and anticipation of childhood Christmas Eves has carried me through adult and parent-hood in which that sense was transformed into a joyous duty of making sure that the joy of Christmas giving and receiving happened just so for everyone around me, but especially for the children. Now, in a grandfather-like way, I still carry that non-burden of duty to make the deep, dark Solstice blossom into a day filled with in-the-moment fun backed up by a sure but subconscious knowledge that "I am cared for". The only nagging regret tugging at the back of my mind is the thought that I can only have a limited success with a very limited number of people in discharging my duty. I can only wish for you and for all the people of the world a great sense of being cared for and of caring for others.... and am saddened that it won't happen for so many around the world... as it does happen for myself.