Plenty of wishes to grant this Christmas


The presents are wrapped, the schedules of celebrations are made. Our best outfits are pressed and ready for church services. There’s little to do now but wait, and reflect on this, the most magical time of year.

I’ve spent many weeks crossing things off family and loved ones’ wish lists. I’ve been asked many times for my own list of wants and needs, but truthfully, I need nothing other than my family and friends and I want for nothing. I am truly blessed and more than thankful.

But in my dreams, there is one thing that I wish for: a magic wand. Not so I can have a bunch of money or to grant myself anything else. No, I dream of receiving a magic wand to give my family and friends the miracles and blessings they deserve.

So let me be a child again and dream a little, since in the eyes of children, Christmas is about dreams and wishes coming true.

If I received that magic wand, here’s what I would do with it:

For my dad, I would grant him more time. I would allow him all the time he needs in a day to finish the work he feels he needs to complete, and then grant more daylight so he can build many memories with his grandchildren. Whether it’s going fishing, hunting, boating or taking a ride through the country, I want my dad to be able to spend time with his grandchildren. Maybe that’s a selfish wish, since I want my daughter to know him and love him as much as I do.

For my mom, I would grant her peace of mind. Sometimes, I think she loves too much, as the troubles of her loved ones become her troubles, too. And really, that’s not fair. I would grant her peace of mind in knowing that those she loves the most are doing fine, which would probably take a lot of magic wand waving.

For my grandfather, I would send him hunting, as a stroke this past year prevented him from doing so, and he will probably never be well enough to go again. The yearly hunting trip is one of the few times he relaxed each year.

For my friend, I would grant her the blessing of parenthood. There is no greater blessing or responsibility, but there is no one else I know who deserves that blessing more. A child would be blessed, too, to have her and her husband — the oldest kid I know — as parents.

For my sister, I would grant her a new pair of knees, without surgery or the pain of rehabilitation. Her joints have been ravaged by juvenile rheumatoid arthritis since she was barely a preschooler. She needs the new knees, especially now that she is chasing her toddler son, who is determined to make every moment count.

For my husband, two waves of my magic wand. I would grant him one more fishing trip with his grandpa, who left this earthly life too soon, and I would make it possible for him to see his mother, who lives in Oregon, anytime he wanted.

And last, for my daughter, I would make her a cloak of protection and love that would surround her at all times. Again, this may be a selfish gift, because I want her to always know how much her daddy and I love her and to always be safe, because just the thought of losing her takes my breath away and brings tears to my eyes.

I could go on and on, wanting to grant every wish my loved ones have, but I don’t have a magic wand. All I can do is pray for those I hold dear that they know today, and all days, the happiness and peace that comes from having a family who loves and supports them and that the weight of life we can’t handle ourselves is being carried by God.

Sometimes, Christmas reminds us of how blessed we are, but also of how little power we have to give our loved ones everything they wish for and deserve. Without a magic wand, all we can really do is hope and pray for the best outcomes possible.

But there is magic in Christmas, so there might be a magic wand under the tree. It will probably only work once, so I’ll grant everyone the happiest of holidays, the most joyful of Christmas miracles, and endless blessings in 2013.

Is that one wish or three?


Deann Stumpe

In her weekly column that runs Mondays in the Hastings Tribune, Deann Stumpe gabs about relationships, movies and TV, and life with a baby. She is the Tribune’s special sections editor.

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