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I’ve always believed in the magic of Christmas Eve. In fact, I directed most of my childhood excitement and wonder for the holiday season toward the day before the big day. It’s the night that Santa Claus makes his flight around the world; the short time before angels appeared to shepherds and informed them that something miraculous had occurred; and the reminder to everyone to drop their normal work routine and pay respects to what is really important.
As the sky turns black, I love how people light up the night with candles set in paper bags, miniscule tapered lights wrapped around houses and warm embraces thrown out to everyone.
There’s been a big countdown going on all month long. As a kid, I would open paper doors on Advent calendars and remove construction paper rings from chains in preparation for Dec. 24. Today, I may not bounce off the walls with the same anticipation as a child but it’s fun to see my sister’s children continue this tradition.
On Christmas Eve this year, my sister’s children zoomed around our parents’ house like blurs of light. It was the only time I have ever seen them eager to go to bed, although my sister’s oldest son, Connor, informed his parents he was going to wake up in the dead of night to catch Santa in action. Receiving this avalanche of giddiness head on, my sister sat down and remarked to me that she would be glad when Christmas was over or at least have her children be a little calmer.
And now the holiday is done. To me, Christmas came and went in a flash. But then again, most days seem to come and go at the speed of light. A friend of mine once said it’s a tell-tale sign of getting older.
She couldn’t be more right. 2009 is now an old man walking into the horizon and even though a New Year baby, 2010, is about to be delivered, it adds another decade to Earth’s age. 2010 is a milestone in age for me, too. I’ll turn 30 in 2010 and I am bracing for the realization that I will no longer be a 20-something, which sometimes felt like an extended adolescent period. Instead, I’ll be ushered fully into adulthood. But, as another friend of mine wisely said, celebrate this. A new age, a new year, they both bring you something undiscovered and both are filled with potential. There is a magic at every age and every day. So Christmas Eve is over; another eve, New Year’s Eve, is approaching. It brings its own set of excitement and anticipation. On Dec. 31, the world will once again be aglow and united in hope for a great tomorrow.
That’s a magic worth believing in.