A Box of Christmas Wishes

For the past few Christmases, I have been playing a little game with Amazon. Each year, as the 25th of December nears, I place my orders closer and closer to the two-day Prime shipping deadline to see just how last-minute I can get to having packages delivered free. The game is rigged. Amazon wins every year. As the loser, I end up paying for expedited shipping. 

This year, I had a new plan for ordering presents for the girls. Early in December, I asked the girls to write down their Christmas wishes and put them in a little, sparkly box next to the tree. 

Last week, I opened my laptop and went to the Amazon site to do some quick, one-click ordering, imagining the satisfaction of boxes arriving with days and days left until Christmas. “Take that, Amazon,” I imagined saying, as I would raise my hands in the air, declaring victory over shipping fees. 

I opened the sparkly box and began to read the wishes written on strips of paper:

1. Make cards for our family to tell them what we like about them.
2. Cut snowflakes out of paper to decorate our Christmas tree.
3. Drive around with the family to see houses with lights, and maybe get hot chocolate after.

Each slip I drew out continued in the same way. Not one mention of presents. Not one thing that would qualify for Amazon Prime. Instead, it contained wishes for family time, kindness and presence. 

I hope you enjoyed a holiday filled with the most important things – none of which qualify for Prime shipping.

Author: Alyssa Forcehimes, PhD

An expert in behavior change, substance use disorders and empathic communication, Dr. Alyssa Forcehimes serves as President of The Change Companies® and Train for Change Inc.® She lives in Arizona with her husband and two daughters.