On the second evening after Christmas I was lying in bed, trying to fall asleep. Suddenly the thought occurred to me that I hadn't noticed a reaction from Timid Daughter to a certain gift I thought she'd particularly like. Then, being a mom of rather many thoughts, I promptly forgot that idea.
On the third day after Christmas I asked Musing Dad if he'd seen Timid Daughter playing with this particular toy. He had not. But he wondered if in fact, the toy still remained wrapped in the presents hiding spot. I gasped. Certainly it wasn't. It couldn't be. I went to the hiding spot. Deep in the bowels of the secret hiding place I found the toy, still wrapped.
How could this be? I'd done what I'd seen my mother-in-law do on several previous occasions, occasions where I had laughed at her forgetfulness. I'd forgotten a gift! And yet Timid Daughter hadn't noticed, had no reason at all to even consider it. She was content with what she'd received. Yet there was more...withheld. Oh how I berated myself for doing what I'd promised myself I'd never do. And yet there it was, a gift ungiven several days past the Date.
Musing Dad placed the gift prominently near the Christmas tree, in the midst of the detritus of Christmas Past. It wasn't long before Timid Daughter spied the bright wrapping and crept near to read the label.
"For me?" she asked.
I nodded, feeling ever more the rotten mom I suspected myself of being.
"Can I open it yet?" came the next request.
Yet? Yet!? Why would I ever make her wait a moment longer on a gift much delayed. Open child, open now! But we needed to await the presence of her siblings who rattled and clomped noisily in the room to see this oddity. A gift long after Christmas!
It was opened with glee and instigated a whole afternoon of new play. I only recovered from my mistake when I remembered the year that a whole pile of presents for my youngest brother were forgotten by an aunt for at least as long. And as that to me was comedy, I decided perhaps my own small mistake was not so much a tragedy. And perhaps I'm not so alone in neglecting to retrieve all the gifts hidden.
Editorial Note: on the eighth day after Christmas Timid Daughter came to me with a Christmas card she'd made and finally found. Touche, eh?