If Only I Could Catch a Reindeer

Slept late last night.

For one, I was in a happy place because of a healthy dose of holiday spirits channeled by a video CD of The Nightmare Before Christmas given to me by Kim as a kris-kringle present in the Shoe Factory.

I had almost given up hope of being infected by the holiday cheer, but something kept me optimistic. Sirius, a reader, had remarked that it helps if there are kiddies helping around when putting up decor for the holidays.

Why didn’t I realize that sooner?

So, over the course of the past few days, Faith — that self-sufficient four-year old who calls me Mama but is Ta’s sister’s daughter — was my little sprite, the cheerleader of our one-woman-and-a-girl team who battled against the cobwebs, the recalcitrant tinsel garlands, and dusty wreaths to cook up a semblance of the Christmas season in our tropical jungle home.

It really uplifts the spirit when one squeaky voice oohs and aahs behind you as you put up a limp strip of glitter paper across a window sill, as if you have made their day. It inspires you to mass produce decorations if you have someone say “Wow!” each time you present them with tinsel cutouts in the shape of stars and poinsettias. And it feels as if you could defy gravity or fly to the moon on stardust if a little person shouts “Hooray!” when you have finished decorating a section of the cottage and start to move to another area.

Eh. I am not so immune to the holiday spirit after all.

Ta put it in perspective for me.

“Perhaps you’ve grown out of the perception that you are the receiver during the holidays,” he said one afternoon when I told him how low I felt because the holiday seemed to lack its usual cheer. “You’re the one spreading the cheer now.” He looked at Faith who was busy counting the stars we’ve just made, readying them for their place under the eaves of my mother’s cottage. I saw his point. And my heart skipped a bit faster.

And so last night, with Jack Skellington taking over Christmas in Christmas Town, I was busy wrapping presents for everyone in my family.

I’ve morphed into Santa’s helper now.

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