Monday, November 9, 2009

Merry Christmas Son! Love, Mom

This isn't a great picture but tonight it tugs at my heart more than I would like to admit.
It is my son.
He walked right in front of the camera as I was trying to capture a picture of our annual tradition of giving the Elder's in our ward a basket of Christmas gifts, just little fun things and treats.
I was probably perturbed at the time but what I wouldn't give..........
Tonight was tough.
I guess I should have been merry or bright but I wasn't.
Tears rimmed my eyes more than once.
I prepared my missionary son's box of Christmas cheer to get it in the mail tomorrow. I know it seems early but to make sure that it gets to Guatemala on time it has to be done ASAP.
In fact other Guat moms are already finished with their boxes and they are in the mail.
I had been collecting little things here and there the last few weeks.
But I had procrastinated the final preparations, the final touches.
Now it was time to put it all in a flat rate mailing box that seems like it gets smaller every time I use them.
I fought back tears as I wrapped each present with brightly colored paper.
Would perhaps a little Christmas music help?
No more noise.
My thoughts are enough noise.
I miss him too much right now.
I stuff and jam the offerings into the box.
The gifts seem silly now and too utilitarian. Who wants to get dress socks for Christmas? A tie? Whoppee! Merry Christmas?
I write a card to enclose in the package. I have nothing new to say. How many times can you say how proud you are and how much you love someone before it sounds too repetitious. But I do.......more than I can express with words.
And so I shed a few tears
As try to fit it all in like a puzzle that has too many pieces.
I will feel a little sorry for myself as I tape the box over and over as it threatens to burst at the seams.
I am bursting at the seams too.

I will feel differently on Christmas morning.
I will remind myself that my son is giving the greatest gift that he can give the Savior on his birthday.
He is following His admonition to "Feed my sheep" with all his might, mind, heart, and strength.
I will pray that as he opens up his silly utilitarian gifts that he will feel just how much he is loved.
And I will wait for the greatest gift
That I can recieve
The sound of his voice.
I can hardly wait.
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Victoria said...

I'm sorry... it gets lonely sometimes! My son comes home for Christmas this year. He has been gone for the last two. In fact, we will have all of our sons home for the first time in five years straight of missionaries out. I don't know if I told you this, but the local missionaries have lived with us for most of the last four or five years. They moved out about four months ago. My daughter is 12 and a half, so it was time. I really miss them. I learned some things from having them here, though. Some of it maybe I kind of knew, but they really brought it home to me.

1. You can never hear "I'm so proud of you," "I'm praying for you and your investigators" or "I love you" too many times. On the other hand, "I miss you" is not appreciated so much.

2. Missionaries. Love. Ties. I don't even understand it, but they love ties like they used to love new video games or an ipod. Maybe because it is all there is to bring variety to their wardrobe. But honestly, they are always a treat!

3. They don't look forward to the Christmas call as much as we do. It makes them a little nervous and distracted. But once they get on the phone, they remember that they used to be this other person... your son, and then they love it.

You deserve to feel a little sad and miss him. And then, tomorrow you can get back to feeling lucky that you have a son who is so able and willing to serve, when so many others shrink from the call. I'll bet your son is an amazing missionary! And I LOVE missionaries.

JUST ME, THE MOM said...

okay you two, you gotta stop it, you're making me all teary eyed and I haven't had a missionary out for the last three years . . . sniff . . .

Beautiful thoughts though - the Christmas packages you stuff in the mailing box never seen like quite enough to express your love and support, cares and prayers on their behalf. You just hope they know how much you love them and how proud your REALLY are of them, and what a blessing they are in your life.

I love missionaries!

Carolyn said...

I could feel every line of this post.

My sons are still little someday I hope to feel just like you.

Aching joy.

Leslie said...

I felt every one of your emotions through your words. I sit here with tears running down my face. I have 7 weeks left with my son before I will be in your shoes. Thank you for being so honest with your feelings. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas phone call and that you are uplifted with the joy of having a wonderful and worthy missionary serving his brothers and sisters in a far away land.