Twas the night before Christmas
and all through the house,
one creature was still stirring: the Military Spouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
but one hook on their mantle looked lonely and bare.
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
while visions of homecoming danced in their heads.
The Spouse sat in the quiet, a true silent night.
Praying for an end to the wars we still fight.
The Spouse’s thoughts were cut short by a sudden, loud noise.
Did it come from the girl’s room? Or maybe the boy’s?
The Spouse listened intently, and paused on a stair.
Could it possibly be that someone was there?
The Spouse peeked on the children
who remained sound asleep.
“I’m losing my mind,” the Spouse muttered.
“There isn’t a peep.”
And then, the Spouse heard an unmistakable sound.
It sounded like laughter, high off the ground.
The Spouse ran to the window
and heard it again!
A giant belly laugh, the kind that comes from a friend.
“Santa?” the Spouse asked, in total disbelief.
Then the Spouse giggled, with a sigh of relief.
Santa’s cheeks were indeed rosy,
his beard fluffy white.
His red suit immaculate,
and his eyes twinkled bright.
“Santa? It’s really you!” the Spouse quickly surmised.
“Of course,” he said warmly, “But you seem so surprised!”
“It’s been a long year,” the Spouse softly confessed.
“I know,” Santa offered, “But you are doing your best.
“While your Spouse is away, you keep this family strong. I know it’s been hard. I know it’s been long.
“I wish I could fit your Spouse in my sack. I wish I could bring you your other half back.
“But your Spouse is needed and busy keeping us safe. You’re both teaching your children sacrifice and grace.
“The gift I do have for you,” Santa said in a hush,
“Is a gentle reminder for when the days are too much.”
He pulled a small gift out of his giant red bag.
The Spouse slowly unwrapped it… ‘Twas an American flag.
Santa’s glasses looked foggy and the Spouse’s eyes welled with tears.
“Thank you, dear Santa,” this will last many years.“
Santa nodded in agreement and said, “Yes it will. For people like your Spouse are protecting it still.
“I have one more gift for you before I depart. This Christmas I’m granting Peace in your heart. You’ll find strength within, as you always do. Our country is thankful for Spouses like you.”
The Spouse hugged Santa farewell
And went to bed feeling light.
While Santa called out, “Merry Christmas to All and to All a Good night!”