One Christmas Eve

December 24th 2005

The soft translucent flakes fell thick, quickly, and silently on the other side of the old, run-down cabin window. Me, as shallow as I was at that point in my life wondered why it had to be so cold and gloomy. My thin, light-blonde hair fell slightly over my left ear and I impatiently pushed it out of the way. “Mom! when is dad supposed to be coming home? He said he’d be here by seven and its already eight thirty!” “Baby.” she hesitated a hint of uneasiness in her voice. “He said he might be late because of the snow storm, I’m sure he’ll be home any minute sweetie.” I knew she was not only trying to comfort me, but herself as well.

Present day

Six years ago to the day, my father passed away on Christmas eve, I’ll admit I was a selfish child, at only fourteen years old, I did not have a greater conscience of right and wrong, of needs and wants, and of love. Until last year I’d hated Christmas, I mean as much as a person could, I absolutely loathed the holiday, for most people its about being with friends and family to celebrate kindness, compassion, and the birth of Christ, but for me It was about mourning. Mourning my father, the only person to ever understand me, to ever really feel and relate to what my feelings and thoughts were as a rebellious teenager.

December 17th 2010

“I’m thinking about starting to call you Miss. Scrooge, just to let you know.” “Wow thanks, Carrie you really know how to make a girl feel good a week before he fathers memorial.” I spoke sarcastically with a hint of humor in my voice, Carrie, my best friend, knew all about my past she had been there since I can remember, meeting at school on the rusty old money bars. “Oh hush you know what i mean.” She spoke soothingly while hooking her arm through mine. I had agreed to help her with her Christmas shopping, If i hadn’t been so negative those years, I would have been positive, if that makes any sense. The twinkling lights and soft gleam of the snow on the streets of Manhattan New York were the most beautiful site for anyone who had been lucky enough to see them except for me of course. “Now let’s go find the best gift ever for my mom, I always expect to find the perfect present but never do and that’s why your here, moral support and a good sense of yes and no!” her smile was enough to make any unhappy person light up; perfect teeth, proportionate bright red lips and the voice to tie it all together, I have to admit I was always a tiny bit jealous of my best friend, she was overall beautiful with her long brown-red hair falling over her shoulders and perfect oval face to fit the pieces together. “Alright, alright let’s get this over with.” I replied with a full hearted smirk.

Getting back to my house, I was strangely uneasy, walking into my stuffy, pitch dark apartment I had the sense of someone watching me. Thinking that it was just my tired nerves I continued on into my half clean kitchen. Turning on the lights I caught a glimpse of something that almost stopped my heart. It was him, my father. In the same clothes he was in the night he died, the ghostly man casually walked over to me and pressed one- as if I could actually feel it- cold rough hand to my cheek and said; “My sweet Abby, you have to stop hating yourself for what happened to me, none of this was your fault baby.” Stunned and frozen, like I didn’t have the vocal chords to speak, I let him continue. “I’m just fine where I am honey, you have no need to worry about me. You need to worry about you and fixing yourself and that big lovely heart of yours that seems to be broken.” Eyes wide, “daddy?” was all I could manage to spit out and then I fell to my knees, eyes never straying from his, the fear of him leaving again was much to strong for me to even try. I just cried, I cried for what felt like hours but what turned out to be only 15 minutes.

Finally my father spoke, “are you ready to talk? or do you need some time to pull yourself together in front of your old man?” His humor and that dazzling white flawless smile broke my tears and started the hysteria. I slowed and finally spoke “What are you doing here? Why did you come back? I’m so glad to see you, I never got to say goodbye I’m so sorry for making you rush home that night it was all my fault and now your, your-” I couldn’t get the word out of my mouth at that moment. It didn’t matter, he answered my question knowing I wouldn’t say out loud that my father was dead. “I’m here for you baby girl, your hurting and i cant stand to see you stuck in this depressing harmful state while everyone around you is moving on about my passing, you need to let it go, not me but the thought of it being your fault, I’m gone but I am still here and always will be.” “Oh daddy I’ve missed you so much -the waterworks were beginning again- I cant believe your actually here right now I tried to touch his face but all I could feel was a thicker air where he stood, “I know as much as I think it was, that it was not my fault and I do need to get over it.” “I love you my baby.” That was the only thing said for a few minutes. After the shock wore off, we talked all night, until eight O clock that morning when finally he left and i smiled, the first real smile in five years.

This Christmas I decided I would treat this holiday like my father would have wanted, with all the holiday spirit in the world, I also know when he comes to visit me these days, even though I can’t see him since that first day, I feel the thickness in the air as i pass a doorway of through a hall. Everything in my life has changed, I’m a happier person I smile and laugh and i believe that everything that happens, happens for a reason. Everything is different, because of that one Christmas eve.

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