A Story From My Christmas Past

When I was a wee lad of around 7 or 8 years old I had it in my head that I really wanted a hamster for Christmas. Daily I informed my parents of my desire for one of the little furballs with a determination only a child could muster. A few days before Christmas I decided to do a leaflet campaign and wrote on many scraps of paper “I want a hamster.” I then took these scraps of paper and scattered them around their bedroom by means of placing them on top of the blades of the ceiling fan and turning it on. I believe it was later that night that I said to my mother with what I imagine was quite a sad looking face “All I really want for Christmas is a hamster.” That may not be an exact quote, it was quite a few years ago.

Christmas morning came and we opened all of the presents and as we were finishing up one of my parents said that they forgot something and went into another room and brought out a small cage with a hamster in it. I remember being filled with joy and shock that they had actually gotten me the hamster I had been begging for.

I hadn’t thought of those events for many many years but for some reason it came to mind yesterday. It reminds me of a simpler time in my life when things weren’t so complicated. My parents bought us presents and as a young child you really don’t think of where the money comes from for those presents. Now as a husband and father myself I know the sacrifice that is sometimes involved in making Christmas special for your children. This will be our son’s first Christmas and I can’t wait to know the joy of watching him attempt to open his presents. Though the wrapping paper will most likely hold his attention more than the presents themselves.

Incidentally the hamster died a few months later when he was rolling around in one of those plastic balls and one of my brothers left the basement door open and Louie (as I so eloquently named him) went rolling on down the stairs. If I remember correctly we made a cross and that same brother used his wood burning set to put Louie’s name on the cross and then we buried him in the back yard.

Merry Christmas everyone.

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