I'll Be Home for Christmas if only in a dream...

Dec. 25, 2012

There are little miracles now and then.  And one happened last night, Christmas Eve.

After six months of not speaking to me--literally no contact, I managed to get my older son to come over for Christmas Eve--it took lots of coaxing, but he showed up.

We were both nervous.  He wore a grubby t-shirt and beat up boots with jeans sagging low, tattoos plainly visible.  He needed a shave and his hair was disheveled sticking out of a black stocking cap.  This was the shell of a boy I've known in the past 2 years.  

Things were awkward at first, but I extended the olive branch by offering him a couple of early Christmas gifts that I thought he might like.  I gave him new clothes and he immediately put them on--thrilled to be "dressed up".  (He used to be quite the snazzy dresser in his early teen years.)  Then he borrowed a razor from his little brother, and he ran a comb through his hair.

A transformation before my eyes.  With his new "look", he loosened up and began to joke around with me and his brother.  Before long we were all laughing and teasing almost like it used to be. Almost.  But the elephant was still in the room.

I've been through this before with him, though so I didn't let down my guard completely.  I know his moods come in waves...I know that he stole half glasses of holiday punch all evening.  I know he took a beer from the fridge and hid the bottle in the laundry basket.  I know that he changed his Facebook profile to a picture of himself in his dressy clothes flying the bird into the mirror...I know he's not the same boy he used to be.

But for just a while, as he and his brother played video games together and munched on Christmas cookies, I was able to bask in the boy home for Christmas if only in a dream.  And I feel like one lucky mom--still  hopeful indeed.

It's the best Christmas present I could ask for.  

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