The greatest present

Published 2:32 pm Friday, January 8, 2010

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.

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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.