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Merry Christmas Eve!!!  As I write this it’s Christmas Eve Eve. (Can you tell I’m excited?)

It’s my favorite time of year; mostly because it’s a time when everyone else is as giddy and happy as I am so I fit in…more.

Ok, so I never fit in. But that’s besides the point.

I’m excited because Xmas is a time when miracles happen and dreams come true (especially for people like me who hate to spend money)….again, mainly because other folks are in good spirits and have to clear out their inventory for the new year. But who cares, it blesses others so I’m all about it!

If you’ve been with me awhile, you know this is a time when I reflect on all that’s come to pass during the year. I express my gratitude for all the lessons I’ve learned, people I’ve met, things I’ve received and experiences I’ve been blessed enough to take part in.

Beyond that I also ponder on what I’d like to be different; areas where I need to grow and changes I need to make;  within myself and to the environment around me. Next, I develop my game plan for achieving those things.

This year, I checked quite a bit off my list: repaired my credit, bought a truck, took a first-time homebuyers course and began saving for a home. I even started working with a financial planner to prepare for retirement and my son’s education. I went skydiving a week ago. (Okay, it was an indoor skydiving simulation, but it still counts). I planned a family reunion where four generations of my maternal line were present; every elder attended or, if passed, was represented by a spouse.

My son has gotten to meet family I discovered during the genealogical research for the reunion that, until then, we didn’t know existed. I assisted in the production of a student film and a short film of mine was produced. Now, I’m assisting in the production of an independent film with some well-known Hollywood players. I’m thrilled!

I’m more than a little grateful to have checked these major items off my list. I can honestly say without hesitation (or embellishment), that I’m finally living life on my terms,the way I desire.

And yet, there’s still one want unmet. It isn’t a glaring, gaping hole in my heart. It isn’t a void in my life. It’s just an unmanifested desire. I want a man.

Let me clarify. I want a covenant partner. A man who not only works to create a life for me and our family, but with us as well.  I want someone who understands that he has as much emotional responsibility to his family as financial.

And though I’m old-fashioned in many ways, I’ve got a little new school in me, too. If he can live with my quirks, contradictions and paradoxes…and understand the realities of “happy wife, happy life”, we’ll get along just fine.

See, my family comes first and foremost before all else in this world; second only to God. Though I’ve learned that I can’t give what I don’t have, my purpose in caring for myself is primarily to make my house a home; to brighten the lives of those I encounter by being a light myself. I love on me so I can love more fervently on them. A man who’s willing and able to contribute to that is a man I’d like to meet (and maybe even marry).

Most of the men I’ve encountered are cool with these preliminary needs. They’re all for the benefits that come with loving me. They’re ready to sign up and settle down. They can just see it now. The problem is…I can’t.

Call me picky, but there’s still more. It’s great if he’s providing and loving on me and helping to make things great, but when a man can’t speak realistically about the work involved in making those dreams a reality, we don’t have much to talk about.

I’m not always looking to do work, but in my life I’ve learned that work always precedes rest, relaxation and recreation. A covenant partner understands that. He or she knows that in order to stand high on the mountain with you they’ll have to journey through valleys, climb some hills and scale a cliff or two.

For me, this relates directly to elder care. Most couples don’t have to worry about caring for a parent for another twenty or thirty years. But my (still young) mother suffers from a chronic disability that often requires me to serve as caregiver. It means having to incorporate her care into my decision-making process for the rest of her life.

Elder care isn’t sexy, so most people don’t even want to consider it in the early dating stages, but if a man is interested in me, it’s going to come up early on: I’m a single mother and caregiver to my mom.

It could be months before he meets them – he might not meet them at all – but he’ll know about them very early on.
Like I said, a lot comes with loving me, but when a man loves me unconditionally and unapologetically, I reciprocate in kind. No shade and no shame.

My covenant partner is a man who understands that my life’s work and purpose is saturated with valleys, cliffs and hills to climbs. He recognizes and accepts that my journey is entwined with journeys of countless others as they venture to become their best Selves. He knows that I need a rock, a lamp and a buoy sometimes, so I can continue being that for him and our family, as well as the countless “strangers” I’ve been called to serve. 

He understands that I’m often in the forefront and he’s cool with that. He’s secure enough in himself, what he does and what he brings to our unit not to be intimidated by what the world says about me, him, us or our unit. He’s cool with being by my side, holding down the fort behind the scenes, or even being in the spotlight himself if that’s what’s required. He knows that I’m a giant because I rest on his shoulders; that my feet stand firmly on the foundation he’s laid and everything I do is intended to align with, ascribe to and manifest his vision. He knows that while I always respect, admire and admonish him…I’m still me, and always will be.

That’s what I want for Xmas. Such a man hasn’t made his way into my life yet. To date, he’s not even on the horizon. Until he shows, I hold the high watch…and keep being me.

And so with that I say, no matter what it is you want for Xmas – or any other day of the year – believe that it’s on its way to you. Keep preparing yourself to receive it. And must importantly, be grateful for what’s already made its way to you. Focus on what will enrich your blessings, not eradicate your blight. Who knows, it just might be the key to your Christmas miracle.

As always, good luck and God bless.