Happy Christmas Eve One & All,
I can hardly believe that tomorrow is Christmas. It’s almost 14 degrees celsius here and there’s no sign of snow. I can’t help but feel a little sad at the thought of not having a white Christmas, but it’s a good reminder that Christmas isn’t really about the sights, but about sharing love and joy with those around us.
And so I wish you all today peace and love and joy in your lives. Whatever your beliefs, I hope that your Christmas is filled with the light of hope! Blessings to you and your family.
Today is our last short. Thank you to everyone who shared this journey with me. I greatly enjoyed each day of conceiving these tales and your comments were always inspiring and encouraging 🙂 I am most grateful for all your kindness. I want to especially send a thank you out to:
Al at hyperactivepandemonium
Mollie at Mollie’s Musings
Kristi at Keep Procrastination at Bay
KJ at K.J. Chapman
Each of you has gifted me with beautiful words. I hope you know how inspired I am by your stories. You are each very talented and I wish you fortune in pursuing your writing dreams 🙂
Now, without further ado, our final Advent Short.
In the darkness of her room, Adelaide sat upon her bed and stared without blinking at the night sky. A light snowfall had dusted the world outside her window, but the clouds still concealed the stars and moon from sight. She willed them to disperse, a task she had been set to for nearly an hour already, all to no avail.
She kept staring, though, and kept wishing. She was nothing if not stubborn—a trait people always told her she had inherited from her father.
Thinking of her dad made her desire intensify. She needed the clouds to part; she needed to see the stars appear in the velvety sky and one in particular. It was the only way she could be sure that he would be home in time for Christmas.
A knock on her door forced her gaze away from the window.
Her mother appeared in a sudden flood of light.
“Still not asleep,” she said.
Adelaide shrugged and glanced back out the window. “I can’t. Not yet.”
Her mom closed the door behind her and came to sit on the bed beside her. “Looking for Santa?”
“You know I stopped believing in him a long time ago.”
“Waiting on the Christmas Star?”
Adelaide turned towards her again, her eyes aglow. “Auntie Orla always says that a wish on the Christmas Star will always come true. As long as you truly believe in its magic.”
“You don’t need to be able to see the Christmas Star to make a wish on it.”
Adelaide held her mother’s eyes with a dubious regard, one eyebrow cocked—another trait adopted from her father.
“Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.”
“No, I have to see it,” Adelaide insisted. “The clouds have to go away.”
Her mother’s hand cupped her shoulder in a tender gesture. “You know, the Christmas Star isn’t even really a star.”
“Auntie Orla always says that the Christmas Star is the brightest in all the night sky, but you can only ever see it at Christmastime.”
“Auntie Orla likes to talk in metaphors…you do know what a metaphor is, right?”
“I’m in Grade Seven, Mommy. I know what a metaphor is.”
“Just checking. Anyway, the Christmas Star is just her way of speaking about baby Jesus.”
Ready to rebuke her mom, Adelaide found that a niggling doubt had crept into her brain. Auntie Orla was enthusiastically religious, after all, at Church every Sunday. And she always did talk about miracles and God and the Light of Christ.
“There is no star?”
“There was. There is,” her mom corrected herself. “The night Jesus was born. Remember?”
Adelaide nodded. It had been awhile since her last Catechism class, but she had attended Christmas Eve last year. “Over the manger in Bethlehem. It was a sign.”
“Exactly. A promise of hope. And that is what your Auntie Orla was talking about. She believes that at Christmastime, miracles are more likely to happen, because Jesus did.”
Chagrined, Adelaide fought tears of disappointment that threatened to fall. “I just wanted Daddy home for Christmas.”
“You can still make your wish, honeybee. We can make it together.”
For the time first time in years, her mom knelt on the floor beside her bed and folded her hands in prayer.
Adelaide resisted the idea. She had said prayers before but they had never worked for her then. Why should she believe that it would be any different this time?
“A little faith, Addy. You were ready to believe in the Christmas Star. Keep believing in it, and help me to believe too.”
At last, Adelaide acquiesced. She knelt on the ground beside her mother, but hesitated again to find the words. She had known what she was going to say to the Star; she was not sure the same could apply here.
“Make your wish, honeybee.”
Adelaide closed her eyes and envisioned in her mind the image of the Christmas Star as she had imagined it would be, brilliant and bright, a profound white light ready to conceive a miracle for her.
“I wish with all I am for my Daddy to come home for Christmas. He’s been gone for so long now, almost a year now. I know what he does is important, but I miss him and I just want to see him again, to hug him again. I want our family to be together.” Her voice cracked, but she took a steadying breath and pressed on. “I promise to be a good girl and I’ll never ask for anything again if I am blessed with this one thing. Please, bring my Daddy home for Christmas.”
“Amen,” her mother whispered and leaned over to kiss her daughter’s brow.
They had made their wish; all that remained now was to hope and have a little faith.
Adelaide awoke Christmas morning with a pounding heart. Below, she could hear her mother sobbing.
She leapt out of bed, ignoring the sight of the stocking at the foot of it and dashed down the steps.
At the base, she froze at the sight before her. She blinked a few time and pinched herself, just to be sure she wasn’t still dreaming.
Her parents embraced her as she flung herself into their arms. The three clung to each other, a family reunited, with a force of those who would never let go again.
May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,