Our family luckily does not celebrate Christmas and the insanity. We already had our true Christmas a few weeks ago, St Nicholas.
I remember every year after the war my parents and I would go to the orphanage and see if we would be getting a new brother or sister. And St Nicholas would bring everyone one toy. Usually a carved wooden statue of our favorite Saint. It was a beautiful time.
When I came to the states Christmas was depressing. I never seen so many gifts. It was like too much. I was eight. This was the first time I was disappointed in my father’s decision in bringing us here. From then on I did not care for Christmas. Yes I went through the mechanics of it. Smiling and wishing a happy holiday. And in the back of my mind wishing that I was back in Germany.
It was the true Christmas to me. The giving of ourselves. Not the fighting in stores for that last gift. Yes my parents adapted to the American Christmas and gave me a lot of toys. But the only thing I wanted was their love.
It was not a happy life until high school. That is where I found true friends. Another wonderful Christmas present.
Now I have a wife and a sister in law who are the same way. We give a minimal amount of presents and are together in front of the TV at midnight watching and participating in the mass from Rome.
This is the true Christmas. Caring and loving each other.