The contributing author this time out for our Chicken Soup for the Soul exclusive excerpt is D'ette Corona and her heart-warming story is a perfect tale to only enhance your family's holiday experience!
From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Christmas Magic, it is our pleasure to present D'ette Corona's contribution to Christmas Magic!
If you carry your childhood with you, you never become older.
As Christmas was approaching, my husband and I decided that a perfect gift for our then three-year-old son would be a battery-operated motorcycle similar to the real one my husband rode in his free time. We knew our son would love it. After searching in what seemed like every store in our area for just the right replica, we finally found it. The purchase was made and it was stored in our bedroom closet.
We talked about our purchase during the weeks leading up to Christmas, anticipating the joy it would bring to our son. But, being parents new to this toy assembly job, we never anticipated the amount of time that it would require to put the motorcycle together. We thought that Christmas Eve would be the perfect time to start the job. We always go to a family Christmas Eve celebration so this meant that it was already 9 pm, after our son was fast asleep, before we could even get the box out of the closet and begin the assembly. Big mistake!
Once the box was opened, it was apparent that this "simple vehicle" was not so simple. It came with multiple screws, plastic pieces, stickers, pages and pages of vague instructions and a miniature Allen wrench… all of the things needed to put the motorcycle together. Both my husband and I worked on it, and it took almost three hours.
After careful inspection of a job well done I decided that the best way to test the new vehicle was to take a ride on it. The instructions indicated that it would hold up to one hundred pounds. The thought never crossed my mind that they actually meant it. I mean look at all of the other things the instructions mentioned that were not necessary -- like the four extra screws! I hopped on. It was a great ride. I drove through the living room and around the dining table. I was having a ball until, well, until we heard the sound… the sound of plastic cracking! I jumped off only to find that I had cracked the entire frame. My husband was furious and had that "what have you done" look on his face. I was hurt, offended and then panicked. It was 11:45 pm on Christmas Eve and I had just broken my son's main gift. What was I going to do?
I immediately called the store where we bought the motorcycle. They always stayed open until midnight on Christmas Eve, thank goodness for us, and they had another motorcycle in stock. They said I'd have to hurry as they were closing in fifteen minutes. My husband, who was not speaking to me by this time, drove to the store and got the new motorcycle. By the time he returned home he was a little calmer but still thought I was a crazy woman and couldn't understand why I had to try riding the thing in the first place.
We began again. Unfortunately, it didn't go any faster the second time around, but we did manage to use more of the screws this time. At 3:00 am the new motorcycle was built. Much to my husband's relief, this time I decided that I would not try and ride it. I would let my son test it out in the morning. I got into bed tired, relieved and depressed. Depressed to learn the truth…I was too big for children's toys and motorcycles.
Christmas morning came in less than four hours. My son was so excited about his new motorcycle -- it was just like his dad's. And Dad was pretty pleased too.
My son is now thirteen and his real motorcycle is in our garage… right next to Dad's. I can't say the child in me has gone away but I have learned that there are some things better left for the boys.
Now my husband and son go for their long motorcycle rides together. My son tries to talk me into going with them. I make eye contact with my husband and remember why this is "their" thing. I had my day on the bike in the living room and that was all I needed.
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