A Christmas I Can't
The Christmas I will always remember best actually sprouted from a tragic misfortune. Toward the beginning of my fourth grade year, I broke both my arms falling out of a swing. What kind of idiot falls out of a swing and puts her arm out to catch herself? That would be me.
Anyway, I was upset because I was supposed to get a bike for my birthday and now, even if I did, I couldn't ride it. My mom decided it would be best not to get the bicycle and instead got me a puppy.
My casts finally came off and before I knew it, it was Christmastime. Every hope I had toward getting my bike built up over the passing days. By Christmas Eve, I was so eager I drove my sister and brother up the wall all night long.
When the morning came, I was in a state of euphoria. It was six in the morning, but because of my mother's rule, I was allowed to rouse everyone in the house. It's a tradition at our house that once all the kids are up Christmas morning, we can wake the adults.
My mom passed out the wrapped presents first which excluded only my bike. She made a big show of it too, but for me they were just fluff. Soon the presents were all opened and everyone settled back to play with their toys.
I looked at my mother expectantly and she said only, "What?" like that explained it. No bicycle for you. I changed my mind. You didn't earn it. My gaze fell and I felt all the happiness drain out of me. Then gently, "Oh, you're looking for your bike. It's outside in the garage."
My eyes rose bright as they had been only moments ago. I ran out the door in my pajamas and socks. Pink. Really mom, was my first impression of my brand-new bicycle, but after that initial shock I couldn't have shrieked more loudly. I pushed it smoothly from the garage and shivered as my shoeless feet touched the snow brushed ground.
I lifted my legs up slowly, anticipation building, and stood firm above the seat. Placing my feet on the pedals, I pushed off. The bike flew down the driveway; it was slick and well oiled. As I struggled to stay balanced, I realized how poorly set up this bike was for my build. I truly didn't care as I whipped in circles in the large open space of road in front of my house.
My mom later told me I'd been riding for fifteen minutes, but I didn't feel like it. When I went inside, I had warm hot cocoa and marshmallows. My socks were soaked and I had to extricate them from my feet and I was shivering with severity. I wonder why, even though riding my bike in the snow was an unintelligent move to make, I couldn't dim the smile curled softly on my lips.