I put the first round of Christmas cards in the mail yesterday, and if I do say so myself, my picture for this year could be in a magazine. It’s black-and-white, featuring the kids snuggled up together reading a book. (I can’t post it here for a few more weeks, because I’m superstitious like that. But take my word for it: it would melt your heart.)
But more than once in the past week I’ve been tempted to throw the whole stack of beauty into the trash can, because it is totally false advertising for what my family looks like these days. I would hate for any of my friends to look at the card and think, “The Watson kids just sit around in their pajamas and read books together? My kids must be defective!”
I won’t tell you all the details because I just read a good article about not broadcasting your child’s sin to the world. So I’ll just say that we’ve had some hard days around here lately, and if you’ve ever been around a 4-year-old or a 1-year-old you can probably fill in the blanks.
And even when they are not being naughty, Abby and Jem are rarely sitting still enough for me to get a good picture, as my mom recently discovered in her attempt to Instagram their new Christmas PJs.
This is a more accurate picture of the past few days for us. (I can show you this because they are not sinning here; Abby is trying to be helpful and Jem is demonstrating a perfectly normal instinct to flee from danger). But really. Who wants to hang this on their refrigerator? It’s good for a little laugh and then you want to move on to something more peaceful (which, incidentally, is how I’ve felt about interacting with the subjects of those photos lately).
So. Our Christmas Card. Stephen and I worked together to artificially construct a moment to represent 2013 to our friends and family. And, yes, we have had lots of sweet moments of sibling love, Abby smiles, Jem smiles, and book reading. All the components of the picture are true, even if the suggestion that they happen often at the exact same time (while Mom has the camera out) is a fiction.
So don’t be fooled, and please enjoy the Christmas card for what it is: wishes (wishful thinking?) for peace and joy from my wild banshees to yours.