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Childhood memories can be both heartwarming and traumatic.  I always prefer the heartwarming version, but there are a few lingering in my past that I guess could be deemed traumatic.  One that stands out for me happened when I was six years old and in the first grade.  First grade should have been a fun time, but unfortunately my teacher was something of a grump.  Let’s say it was probably way past retirement age for her and it was obvious that she had very little patience for small children.   One of her favorite punishments was to put a misbehaving child in the closet.  I don’t remember ever being stuck there, but she did leave a lasting impression on me in another way.  It was just before Christmas and everyone was making stockings out of construction paper and brown paper bags.  The paper was cut shaped like a stocking, then glued onto the bag.  The corner of the bags were then cut so they wouldn’t be seen behind the construction paper.  I used my scissors to trim the corners, but made the holes to big.  My teacher told me then that Santa would never come see me because I didn’t make the stocking right. I remember going home crying because I was so sad.

Well, Mrs. D……., you were wrong.  Santa visited me that year and continues to do so every year.  This year he brought me the gift of being able to be with my family for a wonderful couple of days.  He also delivered into my life a beautiful new grandbaby.  While I always remember what my teacher said to me, I have never lived my life by her words. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!