A story about a dove sending a Christmas card to Heaven!
|Grandpa's favorite holiday was Christmas! It was always a full house at Grandma and Grandpa's on Christmas Eve. It was a cozy little home that sat way out in the country, about fifteen minutes away from town. All three of their children and each of their families were there to celebrate the holiday with them.
We ate something simple on this night, like sandwiches. After we'd eaten our fill of homemade cheese dip and dessert, and done a little visiting and rekindling, we would pass out presents -- my favorite part. We'd all sit around as the teetering stacks of presents grew before our eyes. The room was electric with joy and soon the sound of tearing paper filled the room.
Grandpa was the only one who didn't open his. He believed in tradition, waiting till he woke up on Christmas morning. He liked to pretend they were from Santa. Sometimes some of us would tease him, and try to get him to open the present we brought him. He wouldn't budge, although I do recall a time or two when he gave in but, let me tell you, it wasn't easy. From the look on his face and the numerous times he shook his head no, you could tell he didn't want to do it. Poor Grandpa broke his tradition but it gave us all a laugh and a good time. He started working at a young age, and I don't think he really had a memorable Christmas. Times were tough back then.
Sometimes instead of going back home, our family would stay the night -- Mom, Dad, me, and my three sisters. We girls always had a hard time going to sleep, we were so anxious about the whole Santa Claus thing. I would just lay in bed staring in the pitch dark. I couldn't stop thinking about it all and couldn't wait till it was finally morning and time for us to see our presents.
Come Christmas morning Grandpa was usually the first person we'd see, walking into the living room. He would sit in his recliner with a stack of presents sitting on the floor beside him. Each of us girls would sit underneath the tree beside our piles and look at what Santa brought us. Grandpa would open his and sometimes we got to see him open what we got him. I loved to see his face as he opened his presents and twisted them around in his hands. I could almost read his thoughts on each one; it made me grin. We all loved Grandpa and we'll always carry those special memories close to our hearts.
In 2004 Grandpa grew suddenly ill and was admitted to the hospital, but instead of getting better it got worse; he was very sick. He didn't make it to Christmas that year. He passed away on the 23rd day of December, just a day shy of Christmas Eve and two days before Christmas. We all say that since he's been gone Christmas has never been the same.
Seven years ago today I had a dream. It was about Grandpa. I just knew I had to write it down. It was something I was profoundly touched by and something I would like to share with all of y'all.
The dream took place at Grandma's house. She left me there all alone while she was out at work. I got scared by myself because I started to think about Grandpa. I went outside and sat on the steps in the garage. I went back inside and called Grandma. I asked her what time she would be back to take me home. She said in about six hours. That was entirely too long for me to stay all alone and scared. So I called my mom and asked her if she could pick me up. She said no, growing angry at me for no reason while making up excuses as to why she couldn't pick me up. I went back outside and sat back on the steps.
Suddenly, a dove came flying in to the garage. He asked me if he could take a message.
I said, "Sure, can you make a stop to heaven? Give my grandpa this Christmas card." It had Santa on the front putting a star on the Christmas Tree.
The dove said, "Okay, I will do that."
Then a huge, scary, creepy crow came flying in---mad, wild, and crazy, chasing after the dove. Feathers flew everywhere as he tried to eat the dove.
"Don't eat the dove! He didn't do anything!" I cried.
The crow squawked, "You be quiet or I will eat you alive!"
I asked the crow, "Why would you want to eat me? There are dead animals on the side of the road; go eat a cow or something, just don't eat me!"
The dove got away safely. That's all I remember in that dream. I was so startled and afraid. Boy, was I glad to wake up!