Sunday, December 13, 2009

Christmas Memory #2: Excited Kids

Sometime when we were kids, my brother, Kasey, and my sister, Jen, and I decided to all sleep in the same room together on Christmas Eve. Sometimes it was Jen’s room, sometimes my room and sometimes it was the big room in the basement. We’d set up sleeping areas for the three of us. Mom and Dad were okay with this arrangement and gave us very specific instructions. We were not allowed to sneak into the living room in the middle of the night and we could only check out the Christmas Tree and see what Santa had brought once Mom and Dad were awake and in the living room with us. They also told us we could not wake them up until 6:00.
We would usually try to go to bed earlier than usual on Christmas Eve. I suppose we must have thought that the sooner we went to sleep, the sooner we could wake up and the sooner it would be Christmas. This plan never worked. Oh, we would try to sleep, but then we’d get to talking, then laughing and before you knew it, we were wide awake and sleep was the last thing on our minds. We’d watch the clock and try to stay quiet. We’d play quiet games like checkers or we’d try again to fall asleep, but mostly, we watched the clock.
Eventually, we must have fallen asleep, because inevitably, one of us would wake up at 3 or 4 in the morning and, because of boredom or excitement, wake the others up. This did not make 6:00 come any sooner. We’d do our best to stay quiet so we didn’t wake up Mom and Dad. We feared that if we did disturb them, we’d have to wait even longer, and waiting even a few extra minutes would be absolutely agonizing for three very excited kids.
Finally, the appointed hour would arrive and the three of us would chase up to our parent’s room and happily wake them up. We waited patiently as they put on slippers and robes and finally let us into the living room where we could see that indeed Santa had visited.
We kept the tradition of all three of us sleeping in the same room for several years. I think we stopped doing it when I was in high school. It really is more of a little kid thing to do, but the first year we didn’t do it, I missed it. My brother and sister and I are pretty close compared to other siblings we know, but I never felt closer to them than the Christmas Eves we’d spend watching the clock together.

Memories are funny things really. Two people can experience the exact same event, but remember it in two very different ways.
Here’s my sister, Jen’s version of that same memory:
Oh, here's a memory for you!! Remember when we would all sleep in the same room and some years we would sleep in Jen's room. Even though it was HER ROOM - we would still kick her out of HER BED and make her sleep on the floor. Don't you remember that - wasn't that sooooo funny!!! (Insert thick layer of sarcasim)
(Note: I actually don’t remember ever kicking Jen out of her bed.)

And here’s my Mom’s version:
I remember when you kids were told you had to wait until a certain time to wake us up on Christmas morning. We would hear you get up trying to be quiet, and arguing quietly about who had/got?? to wake us up. We would pretend we were still asleep. We would hear you sneak down stairs to check out the tree and then come back upstairs to wait for the wake up time, all the while trying to be quiet. But really, how quiet can three excited kids on Christmas morning be?
(Note: I thought we were quiet. We tried so hard, I promise.)

1 comment:

Leslie said...

Cute entry. I like how you added Jen's and your mom's thoughts too!! It's funny how we all remember things!