It’s a week to Christmas and Dami is playing with Rere, the 8-year-old daughter of Princess, the cook to the Faderins (the parents of Dami). She recounts the plethora of gifts she has received from her parents for Christmas, – 2 new shoes, two lovely dresses, and a new bag, among others. As she mentions her gifts she notices Rere is crestfallen and inquires as to the reason. A sullen Rere replies “when I asked my dad for a Christmas dress he said there is no money and that he has to save towards my second term fees”. Immediately, Dami excuses herself and dashes off to her room to pick up one of her new dresses to give to Rere who is about the same age and size as her.
Just then, she bumps into her mother who with a quizzical look asks what she is doing with the dress. Her response was clear and direct “Mum, it’s Christmas and we are taught at children’s church that it is a time of giving. Rere does not have a dress for Christmas and I have two. Christmas day is just one day, not two so I have decided to give her my second dress for her to wear at Christmas”. Her mum replies “Certainly not Dami! That dress cost a fortune! I won’t have you do that. Let me look for one of your used dresses to pass to her for Christmas”. Dami replies her mum, rolling her eyes and appealing to her emotions “Pretty please mum, we always give her my castaways…this is Christmas, why can’t she have a new dress. Furthermore, we are told that God’s greatest gift to us was the birth (giving) of his son which we commemorate at Christmas. Mum, she is my best friend and I want to give her this dress”.
Pelumi Faderin throws her hands up in exasperation and promises to revisit the matter when dad returns from work. By the time dad is home, Dami is already in bed but Pelumi replays the scene to Lanre Faderin at the dinner table.
Lanre takes a deep breath and says point of factly “You know Dami is intelligent and indeed she is right. This brings to memory one Christmas season I will never forget. A Christmas gift like no other that changed my life and that of my siblings for good and provided you with the husband you have today”. Lanre continues “20 years ago, I was in the first year in the university when my father, a motor mechanic, died in his sleep, a week to Christmas. My father had struggled to give his children an education while my mother, a petty trader at the time, took care of day-to-day expenses. For me, the first of 6 children, the world had just caved in, my dreams were broken and my ticket to an education that would eventually take the family away from the poverty line had been severed. That day Dim (yes, the same Dimeji Anyanwu) my bosom friend, walked into my room and I broke down uncontrollably, letting him into my shattered world. You know, Dimeji and I were from totally different backgrounds as he was heir apparent to the Anyanwu fortunes. An only child with affluent parents whose association with me had made him better focused resulting in him experiencing improved grades. Dim exercised the spirit of Christmas by persuading his parents to set up an Education Trust for me and 2 of my siblings thereby securing our education up to the university level. Today, your husband is a proud Chemical Engineer working within the Oil and Gas Industry, thanks to the Christmas spirit of a friend who is closer than a brother and his kind parents who understood the true spirit of Christmas. Pelumi, please allow Dami to put a smile on Rere’s face this Christmas by giving from the heart”.
Dear readers, once again, it is that time of the year filled with magical excitement for children, while parents are stretched to their limits. Christmas portends new outfits, good food, family events, Santa (a.k.a father Christmas) Christmas trees, lights, etc. for the children while parents struggle to provide for them. Parents are not left out of receiving as some employers give various holiday packages and gifts to their staff. Of course, all the buying translates into sales and huge profits for retail outlets and their vendors and the ripple effect of Christmas is a worldwide phenomenon. No other holiday season is as electrifying. It is a season when Christians all over the world commemorate the birth of Christ as God’s greatest gift to the world. Therefore, it is a time of giving and importantly, everyone has something to give – be it time, advice, kindness, love, assistance and the like. The list goes on. Have an awesome festive season.
Merry Christmas All.