This Christmas

“Duhn duhn dunna-na, shake a hand, shake a hand”.


This song does it to me every time. Donny Hathaway’s version of This Christmas is a holiday staple that can be heard in most African-American homes. But this song takes me back to ONE Christmas in particular. The year was 1990. I was 16 years old and it was the first Christmas that my Mother, my sister and myself were together again.




Back together again.


After years of separation, years of pain, years of deep hurt, not only were we together but my mother was thriving. She was sustaining her sobriety, had regained full custody of my sister and was residing in a rooming house awaiting the rental of a townhome.


It was in this rooming house, in our one little 10×10 room that I had the best Christmas ever. This rooming house where we shared a kitchen and bathroom and all other common spaces, a rooming house filled with men, no other women and surely no other families but we were happy. In fact, my sister was so happy, she vomited. I can clearly remember her smile, the toothless grin full of cheer. I had just braided her hair the night before and she was oh so cute!


We had a tiny tabletop tree, soulful Christmas tunes played in the background and love permeated the atmosphere.


This Christmas.


This is the Christmas that I remember most.


These are the memories that I cherish and hold dear.


I don’t remember the gifts.


I don’t remember what we ate for dinner.


But I do remember the love that was shared.


The Christmas that followed was special too as it would be the last Christmas I’d ever have with my mother.


“And this Christmas will be a very special Christmas for me”.


It was a special one indeed.


Friends I pray that where ever today finds you that your heart will be filled with love joy, and cheer. I pray that you will be purposeful in embracing each moment, as we do not know what the future holds. Even if you are grieving, even if you are bitter, even if this year isn’t wrapping up as you envisioned, there is still reason to rejoice.


THIS moment finds you with your heart beating, with your pulse steady, with a measure of good health and with the never-ending, immeasurable love of Christ.


As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

3 replies
  1. Candace
    Candace says:

    What a precious and meaningful memory, Tyra! Thank you for sharing this favorite holiday of long ago with us. I hope you and your family had a wonderful Christmas. Happy New Year, my friend! Many blessings to you and yours in 2016.

  2. Brandi Jefferson-Motley
    Brandi Jefferson-Motley says:

    What an amazing Christmas memory to share my beautiful sis. I can relate more than you know, down to the apartment building with the communal bathroom. Nothing else mattered but being in that space with the one(s) whom your heart cried out for and desired to be near the most. Merry Christmas sweetie ❤️


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *