I live in the cutest, quaintest downtown area. I have the awesome privilege of walking my dog every day, up and down streets sprinkled with beautiful homes, historical markers, and lovely churches that chime melodious tunes. I live a block away from a neat landmark that festively turns into something we call, “Santa’s Village,” during the holidays. This area transforms from colonial to colorful almost overnight. At night Christmas lights are proudly displayed, draped from merely every building, and precious holiday songs can be heard down the street. Normally all of this would make my little heart so happy.
However this year it makes my skin crawl a bit. I’ve got issues with Santa, y’all.
Okay, so not really with Santa the person, but just with this whole Santa’s Village event. And before you go telling the creator/owner/employees of Santa’s Village that I said that, let me explain.
Last year, as a family, and including my boyfriend Richard who has since passed, we took my two year old nephew to Santa’s Village. It’s really the coolest village, adorned with an ornament making shop, a snow machine, live performances and of course, Santa himself. It’s lovely. It’s a lovely memory I have in my mind and one of the last ones I have of being with Richard before he went into the hospital. He was a great sport about the entire thing, even though he was in extreme pain, as little did we know, leukemia had started taking over his body. Needless to say, looking at Santa’s Village every single day can dig up some emotions.
So now what? Do I let something that brings so much joy to so many others, bring torment to me? Do I plug my ears every time I walk my dog by it? Do I find a way to inconspicuously unplug every stinking light in that place?
But I do let my mind wander back to that night and I reflect. Sometimes with reflection comes sadness, but more times than not, comes gratitude. Gratitude for the short time I had with Richard. Gratitude for having the opportunity to live right down the street from a place that constantly reminds me of our time together.
While I do not plan to go into Santa’s Village anytime soon, as I do not want to scare all of the children with the emotional breakdown I am sure to have, I will walk by it daily and thank my God for the time He gave me with the most unconventional of angels.