Angel Tree Christmas
It doesn’t seem possible that Christmas is only 5 weeks away. It feels like just yesterday that we were rushing around trying to get to as many family functions as we could. I can’t believe that it’s almost that time again! I want to share with you the joy of Angel Tree Christmas.
When I was growing up, Christmas was one of the hardest times for me (read my story). I remember feeling empty, forgotten, and alone. I remember feeling so disappointed, thinking that Christmas should be a joyful time spending quality time with family – not celebrating with strangers in a prison. My Mom did her best to encourage me that this season wasn’t going to last forever. But as a little kid a day feels like a month and weeks feel like years without daddy.
My Dad wasn’t able to go out and shop for Christmas presents for me or my brother.
For years, as badly as I wanted to wake up on Christmas morning and see a gift from my Dad under the tree, it didn’t happen. As a child, I needed to know that he was part of my life all the time. I sometimes felt he was only there for us during the times we were able to visit him. I needed him to be there in ways I knew he couldn’t. That’s what made every holiday so hard, but especially Christmas.
Thankfully, after a few years, someone told my Mom about an organization called Angel Tree Ministries. Angel Tree that provides Christmas gifts for children on behalf of a parent who is in prison.
Words cannot express the warmth I felt in my heart when we sat by the tree and my mom read the tag to me, “From Dad”.
I was excited and confused at the same time thinking, “How the heck did my Dad get me a present while in prison?” I remember asking my Mom so many questions, “How did Dad get me this? How did he know our address? How did he know I wanted a truck?”
Getting presents “from my Dad” reinforced the feeling that even though he wasn’t with me every day physically, he still cared about me and wanted me to be happy. Angel Tree didn’t just deliver presents to my family during Christmas, they delivered hope and love. Those gifts were so much more than just something under the tree for me to unwrap. They were a sign that my Dad was still a part of my home life even though he was in prison.
If you are a family in need of presents this Christmas or if you would like to donate presents to families in need, click here to connect with Angel Tree.