How are you? I am fine.
I believed in you for true real until seventh grade, Santa. I really just held onto it. And as it turns out, I still believe. I really do. There is a Christmas Spirit that comes in December, and it is real. It is enveloping, and I just decide, every December, to give my heart over to rolling around in it.
Santa, this has been a busy year. One year ago right now, I was busily trying to finish Act One of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. (That experience surpassed my grandest dreams. Thanks for that.) I had made an epic decision to buy Amelia a bunny on Christmas Eve, crossing A Christmas Morning with a Live Animal off my list of Things to Do. (The bunny is dead now, by the way. Probably eaten by coyotes. REALLY sorry about that, Santa.)
Anyway, here, a year later, I’m struggling to finish act one of Wherefore Art Thou. (And not for nothing, Santa…it’s kicking some serious ass. Not there yet, but getting there. If you are mixed up with God and Mother Earth and Dionysus in making that happen, well…thanks for that.) Something tells me you’re all somehow working together up there to make good things happen for me.
So, Santa…I haven’t been perfect this year. I’ve had weaknesses and errors and disappointments and stupid moments. But that’s the same of everyone, every year. I really do believe that. The thing is, Santa…this year has been very different, because this year, more than any other year ...I have tried really hard to be as close to perfect as possible. I have tried harder than any other year to live thoughtfully and deliberately, and I feel that my efforts have paid off.
I have received so many gifts this year. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, and my trip to the Broadway Teachers’ Workshop and reading I Capture the Castle and getting a new Harry Potter Movie and surviving my high school musical, and Glee. I am grateful. And I am grateful for finally writing a blog. (For finally writing something, mostly...besides my journals.) I started this blog last April, when the trees were budding, and I was given the experience of saving five baby swans with my Abby on a perfect, fragrant, springtime afternoon. I was given that, I think, so that I could have something completely unique and real and kind of winsome to write about, and so that I could share a Perfect Mothering Moment with Abby, the kind we will both always remember and use to define the best of our relationship.
Really, when you think about it, in a whole entire calendar year, that’s a wonderful agenda to set. To try to find one true, real, definitive moment to attribute to the fabric of a friendship, or a family, or a marriage. I’ll have to think more about this concept when it comes time to write my New Year’s Resolutions.
For now, Santa, please keep the Christmas Spirit alive and well in my yellow house, in our last Christmas here, in maybe my daughters’ last Christmas of believing with pure hearts. And let this house be all wrapped up with their memories of a happy, secure, inspiring childhood.
So, on my list of thank you’s, thank you for this home, and thank you for the clarity that it is time for us to move on. This is what we need, and I am grateful for the knowledge that no matter how much disarray we now face, it will all be worth it in the end.
I love this leap of faith, and I will remember 2009 as a year of many leaps of faith – as a writer, as a wife, as a mother, as a person in the world. I am not the same person I was last Christmas. I am proud of myself for putting in the work to get here.
So, because I was such a good, hard-working girl this year, would you please bring me Season One of Glee on DVD (which comes out on December 29th), a hand-held device for my phone, something made from chocolate, and a productive read-through of my new play on Christmas Eve.
I love you, Santa. I will leave you cookies and milk, and I will listen for your bells.
Because…wait for it…
The bell still rings for me, and for everyone who truly believes.
I believe. Oh, I believe!