Friday afternoon we were scheduled to join some other homeschooling families for caroling and passing out Christmas Cheer to residents in a nearby nursing home. It sounded like a fun and good thing to do back in October when I signed up for it but getting out the door after an emotionally and physically week was tough to do. If it were not for Lil’C who desperately wanted to see her friends and Z who wanted to pass out the jingle necklaces we made (and my guilt for not showing), I would have gotten into my jammies and called it a day.
We had left plenty of time to get there but spent 20 minutes driving up and down the same street trying to find the nursing home. We were late, I was stressed, Lil’C was teary and I just wanted to go home. I finally pulled into a gas station, punched the address into my phone and drove back down the street one more time. Traffic was crazy, I was not feeling festive and it was time to go and spread some Christmas Cheer. I took a deep breath, looked at my sweet children’s faces and thought of all of the people inside who may not have many visitors and I rallied.
In we went, friendly residents pointing the way for us so that we could find our group. We did meet up with them and then the magic began. The residents LOVED all of the children, especially the little girls and took the decorations that the kids had made with big smiles, kisses and hugs. They put them on their walkers, their wheel chairs or hung them round their necks. They were all so excited to see these young faces and we were so excited to see the sparkle in all of their eyes.
We sang carols together, passed out cookies and visited a few different rooms so that all could participate. I got a chance to chat with a few of the residents. I asked about their families, their late husbands and we laughed over stories about car crashes in snow, sneaking out to shop when the husbands didn’t know and about how our minds can be mush at times. The whole experience was so very special for me, a true gift. In the car on the ride home, I chatted with the kids about going back on a regular basis and they liked that idea. It might be nice to get a group of children together who regularly visit and play games, sing songs and just visit these amazing people.