Three Gifts

by Monica on December 21, 2009 · 3 comments

Drawer after drawer we sorted and packed away a lifetime of belongings. 

I found hidden memories, long forgotten, yet lovingly packed away for a rainy day.  It was quite evident how much she valued our little lives.  Every award, every birthday card, every baby tooth, even a lock of hair – it was all there in boxes waiting for me.  My heart felt heavy, but warm with glow.

Perhaps I could have asked friends to help with it all, but being given this opportunity to be alone with my thoughts and her things, was so important to me.  I now understand that a lot of healing comes along with this process.  And much has occurred.

I opened the bottom drawer of an antique-white wardrobe, it was bursting with gifts.  My Mom liked to have things on hand just in case, so when she saw things she liked as the seasons rolled-by, into the collection they would go.  I dug through the drawer until I found a stack of three red, white and green tea towels embellished with whimsical embroidery.  They were gorgeous and I was instantly drawn to them.  I knew right then and there that she had picked these out for me.  We had often discussed how much I love to entertain and she had said she would keep an eye out for festive treasures to help me celebrate each holiday season.  I held the towels in my lap and could not wait to use them.


In another box of things my brother had already packed I found a round tin that I recognized as one that used to sit atop our fridge when we were kids.  At Christmastime each year, it would be full of shortbread cookies shaped like bells and stars.  I opened the tin to find the very cookie cutters that my Mom had used each year since we were little.

Over the last few years, my Mom made sure that she continued to make these shortbread cookies for my brother.  It was tradition and it was something that he wasn’t yet ready to let go of.  Christmas just wasn’t Christmas without them.

So I tucked the tin of cookie cutters into the back of my car and vowed that my brother would not go without this year simply due to the circumstances.  If she could send these from ‘heaven’, I’m sure she would.  Instead, I will make them.


The closet in her bedroom was large and full; clothing, shoes, bedding and old keepsakes.  There was even a small section dedicated to storing several unopened toys – they were for Lucas, but I could tell they were things she had found for when he was older.  I contemplated giving away these things, but she bought them for him, and I needed to fulfill their purpose.

If she was here for Christmas this year, I know at least one of those toys would be wrapped under the tree for him.  And so it will be.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

laviana December 21, 2009 at 7:14 pm

I know you miss your mom, and I miss my mom too.
She lives away from my city. I ordered a white and black scarf from I hope she can enjoy it.
My mom also give me a lot of toys as gifts when I was a little girl.
If she was here for Christmas this year, I know at least one of those toys would be wrapped under the tree for him. And so it will be.
I love this sentence. Happy Chritsmas.

Elizabeth December 22, 2009 at 10:28 am

This brought tears to my eyes.

Alison December 22, 2009 at 9:24 pm

beautiful… and so incredible to find all those treasures she left for you all. You can hear the peace in your words and its just a very lovely thing. merry Christmas!

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