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The greatest present

Christmas is a very happy time of year with bells, toys, food and family. Everybody seems to overfill with joy with the sight of Christmas trees and Santa Claus. It is such a wonderful time of year. Kids stay up late on Christmas Eve and try their best to catch a glimpse of Santas sleigh or Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer.

I can honestly say that the best Christmas I ever experienced was in 2004, my fifth grade year. My dad had been gone to Iraq for a year and a half and I only saw him one time before this. It was the week before Christmas and I was ecstatic, for my dad was to be home the next day. While we were on our way to the airport, as I shoved the balloons and signs aside, I could hardly contain myself. Two hours in a car with this much energy and excitement, I just couldnt handle it!

When we reached the airport and parked the car, I basically ran all the way to the gate where he was to arrive. I saw the plane land and I could feel the pumping of my heart growing, getting stronger and faster. As soon as I saw the uniformed soldiers I burst into tears, shoving away the anxiety gripping at my throat. Through blurry eyes I strained to look for the man I hadnt seen in over eight months. When finally I caught a glimpse of the SFC Kelly nametag I ran at him, almost knocking him down. We walked back to the car, my arms gripping tightly around his waist the whole way to the car.

So Christmas trees, bells and toys aside, my father coming home for Christmas that year was the greatest present I ever received.

Chelsea Kelly is a student in Alan Peoples’ freshman language arts class at Polk County High School.