Jesse Jackson ~
Your children need your presence more than your presents.
Things have been tight here and normally, we deal with it and make ends meet. The problem is when there are unexpected things that pop up, such as Christmas presents. And then that's when I start to feel down. I love nothing more than giving people gifts, especially my family.
Some of my Christmas blahs have to do with the fact that we just don't have a lot of extra money so many of the things that I would love to give my family, I am unable to do. We are paying almost $600 per month for Stephen's college bill and that is a big "ouch" each month.
But this morning I stumbled across this quote and it was a good reminder to me. Gifts and material things are fleeting. What is going to make a difference to my family is my complete and absolute presence in their lives. If all they remember is a stressed-out and grouchy wife and mother, then I have truly failed.
One of my children made a comment one day that I'm often busy and seem distracted. And that made me feel sad because I know they are right. Often I'm half listening or shushing someone because I'm trying to focus on some activity. Or I'm barking orders at them because I'm rushing.
So this Christmas I think the best gift I can give my children is being not just physically, but mentally here. To enjoy the small moments. To laugh, love and live. The best gift is to be wholly here with my family.