Every year around Christmas, I read a collection of Christmas stories from a sci-fi author, Connie Willis. I love these stories, especially the first one.
Every time I read this story, and especially the following passage, it makes me think about what it is we really want.
My gift to you at the end of this year is this excerpt, as well as a great wish for you to believe you’re worthy of what you want and to ask for your heart’s desire.
“When I was eight,” [Fred] said thoughtfully, “I asked for a computer for Christmas. Home computers were new then and they were pretty expensive, and I wasn’t sure I’d get it. I was a lot like Natalie Wood in Miracle on 34th Street. I didn’t believe in Santa Claus, and I didn’t believe in miracles, but I really wanted it.”
“Did you get the computer?”
“No. Christmas morning I came downstairs, and there was a note telling me to look in the garage. It was a puppy.” He smiled, remembering. “The thing was, a computer was too expensive, but there was an outside chance I’d get it, or I wouldn’t have asked for it. Kids don’t ask for stuff they know is impossible.”
“And you hadn’t asked for a puppy because you knew you couldn’t have one?”
“No, you don’t understand. There are things you don’t ask for because you know you can’t have them, and then there are things so far outside the realm of possibility, it would never even occur to you to want them.”
(From “Miracle,” Miracle and Other Christmas Stories by Connie Willis)