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I always find it fascinating, how life looks so different each and every year.
I look back at this year as if it were a dream,
as if Camus’s stranger or Dostoevsky’s double has been meddling with my affairs.
I wouldn’t be surprised. After this year, I no longer believe in surprise.
But I remember back, way back, to those times on Santa’s lap.
“What do you want for Christmas, little boy?”
And I would reply with whatever the boy before me had said.
“I want a Tonka Truck and a GI-Joe.”
And I remember thinking to myself,
that I would for sure get that Tonka Truck and GI-Joe,
just because I had asked Santa Claus.
What amazing faith I had as a child.
If you were to ask me what I wanted for Christmas this year,
I wouldn’t have an answer for you. Maybe if I thought about it long enough,
I would come up with something. But, without a doubt,
it’d be something that no person could ever give me.

There’s nothing more that I want. I have everything that I need.
My life is bountiful, plentiful. I know who I am, and those closest to me,
who love me, know exactly who I am too. And they love me because of that.
And it’s got nothing to do with you. Who I am doesn’t depend on you,
or what day it is, or where I am. And that’s all I’ve ever wanted,
more than Tonka Trucks or GI Joe’s… just to know who I am, and be okay with it.
This year has been tough for all of us. And with our noses pressed so close
to the glass of each day, it becomes even tougher. But I do know one thing. Everything’s going to be okay. Tough, but okay.
I may not get the things that I want, or even the things that I need.
And some of you might walk out of my life with the blink of an eye.
And I’ll be left there, my nose to the glass, watching your handprints disappear.
But everything will still be okay.

And next year, when I’m sitting here, again, in my parents’ house,
listening to Nat King Cole sing Christmas carols, I’ll think about the year,
and the ones before it, how I didn’t get my Tonka Truck again.
But I’ll still have me. I’ll still know me.
And that’s something that nobody else can give me.
And there could be no better gift than that.


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