Grown Up Christmas List

Gloria Steinem’s “The Top Ten Things I Want For Christmas” speech from a BETTY’s holiday show, recently appeared on Huffington Post. Much like the David Letterman Show, it started at her number ten wish and worked its way to the number one. When I clicked on the link I assumed it would be an Oprah-ish list of the hot gift ideas for the season. I’ve been struggling with what to get the people on my list. I was truly looking for ideas. I didn’t know it was written by Gloria Steinem. The first thing on the list was a bit surprising given my expectations:

10. An abject apology from Donald Trump for being a Birther; anti-immigrant; a builder of buildings that look like big Dunhill cigarette lighters; the world’s most punishing source of Green Cards for women who marry him to get one; daring to rate women as no longer Tens when he himself has never been a One; going bankrupt multiple times in order to stick other people with his bad-judgment debt; pretending he ever hit a home run when actually, he was born on Third Base — and oh, yes, setting the hair weave industry all the way back to Rogaine.

Truthfully, the biting tone almost made me close the page, but curiosity got the best of me. And as I read through the list, I wondered what top ten things did I want for Christmas.

Writing Christmas list were easier when we were kids. We hardly even had to think about it. Toy”R”Us sent the catalog directly to our house right after Thanksgiving. All we had to do was transfer the names of the toys from the catalog to our list for Santa. And even as I got older, so many of the things I wanted could be bought.

Not so true anymore. It reminds me of the lyrics from the song “My Grown Up Christmas List.”  So much of our list is not for ourselves, but for our families, our communities, and our world. 

That being said, I think it would be a good exercise to write a grown up Christmas list. Stopping to think about what’s important to us, gives us an opportunity to evaluate how we spend our time and money. It might even lead to new ideas and goals. 

The only thing I want for Christmas, I know I can’t have. My son isn’t coming back to this world. But I am here, and I want to “be the change I wish to see in the world”(*). 

It would be cool if now I went into my Grown Up Christmas list, but there is so much that needs our collective attention that I want to think through what types of things I can do to make a difference.

Looks like I have the subject of another blog.

*The quote is from Mahatma Gandhi

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