25 December 2008

Operation: Save Christmas

This time last year, Mike and I were beyond most people's definition of exhaustion. Despite that, it was Christmas Eve and we were away from home without one single gift for Conner from "Santa" or ourselves. So, without my knowledge, Michael sprung into Super Secret Operation: Save Christmas.

We'd spoken briefly about how "it didn't really matter that the gifts were in Montgomery and we were in Birmingham and that we were extremely grateful just to be with family on Christmas and how presents don't define the Holiday and so on and so on". But, we did want some sense of normalcy. Some sign that things weren't complete chaos (although it was). And then there was Conner to whom we'd been selling this idea of magically appearing gifts for over a month now. Not that he'd known one day from the next but we had promised.

So, with no sleep, armed with his college friend Stuart, a couple of Cokes and some gnarly music (I'm sure), Mike trecked to Montgomery having spoon fed me the excuse of "I'm going to the NICU to see Chase since it is Christmas Eve". He had taken a night shift before, so I swallowed the fact that Mike would go yet another night without sleep and headed for bed myself around 11:30.

Mike arrived in Montgomery shortly after 1 a.m. and spent over an hour sorting through gifts, loading them into the car in the freezing cold. He still doesn't know how the neighbors didn't see him and call the cops... He even flushed the potties and grabbed a few essentials we had missed in our mad dash to Birmingham a few days prior. What a good little hubby he is.

"Santa" then hustled back to Birmingham (on his magical sled with reindeer, naturally), more exhausted than ever, to set up the next days Christmas Delight. By the time day broke, he was crawling into bed. His Christmas Merriment Experiment tucked under his belt.

We woke a few hours later, and Conner and I stumbled down the stairs of my mother's house to find a room full of gifts.

It took me a few minutes to realize that the gifts were in the wrapping paper I had used. The same sizes, the same shapes, the same amount of gifts that I assumed were still under our tree in Montgomery.

In a haze I asked "Did you go out and buy the same gifts? And wrap them?"
I'm a moron.
He chuckled and replied "No. Guess again."

Then it hit me, the magic of Christmas had not passed us over and there sat every single gift Michael, I and Mr. Clause had intended on giving Conner and our families.

It was truly amazing.

I will always treasure what Michael did that night. Thank you baby. You are the best Santa ever.
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