“The Christmas Thinker”


I don’t know one woman who isn’t feeling slightly ill on Christmas Eve. Staying up late buying, wrapping and labeling gifts or making side dishes for the many Christmas parties she will endure over the course of a four day period. I thought I was tired. My girlfriends and I, when we had two seconds to chat, lamented our tortured schedules and spoke of the possibility of getting the greatest Christmas gift….a nap. But then I spoke to my sister about her visit from my parents.

My parents drove to Virginia to spend Christmas Eve with them and around 8:30 PM my mom said she couldn’t stay up any later. She had hit her “wall”…and had to sleep. She went upstairs and my sister stayed up another two hours getting things prepared for Christmas Day. When my sister went upstairs to bed she was surprised to see my mom’s lights on in the guest room. She asked my mom why she was still up when she had gone to bed two hours prior. My mom replied “Well, I did sleep for a while….but it was on the toilet.” WHAT??!! My mom had gone to the bathroom- like everyone’s nightly ritual – and just fell asleep. I wondered if that was humanly possible? I’ve heard of people dying on a toilet but never sleeping. When I asked my mom if she had FALLEN off the toilet, she replied “NO, OF COURSE NOT. (as if appalled by the mere suggestion- everyone knows that falling asleep on the toilet is okay but falling OFF the toilet while asleep is just classless). I just couldn’t understand how this was humanly possible. I think my sister summed up the visual best when she said, “Dena, just imagine Rodin’s The Thinker…….. but on a toilet.” …and then it all made sense.