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Once upon a time I was filled with wonder for Christmas. On Christmas Eve, my brothers, sisters and I would leave a beer and a slice of fruitcake out for Santa and a carrot for the reindeer.

I remember racing out to the kitchen to see the evidence of Santa’s visit, to see the teeth marks left in the stub of carrot, the crumbs of fruit cake on the plate. Santa would always write us a note of thanks and it was that note I carried excitedly to my parents, even before looking for the presents he had left us.

That Christmas Eve tradition was one thing I used to dream of doing for my kids one day. While I am perfectly content with my choice and it doesn’t even cross my radar most of the year, I admit that I struggle a little at Christmas time. While all my friends are posting photos of themselves on Santa’s knee, and I am surrounded by all those Kodak moments, the absence of joy in my life is felt more keenly.

It is hard to keep that sense of wonder and enjoyment when there is no joy, no wide eyed innocence and excitement. There’s no countdown to that magical day. In fact my family don’t do presents as there’s nothing we really want or need, so our tree sits decorated without a single present beneath its branches.

It’s bigger than just me too. My siblings and I don’t have a mental filing cabinet of happy Christmas memories, so it’s fine with Christmas being “just another day”. They don’t miss the absence of that Christmas spirit the way I do. I always make seeing our family a priority, but with a loving mom and close siblings, our Christmas gatherings are small and quiet affairs.

I miss the fun and the excitement, the anticipation of what Christmas magic may be in store, the idea of being part of something bigger than our household. This year I set out to recapture some of that Christmas spirit and inimitable Christmas fun with The Twelve Days of Christmas poetry and Project.

Written By:  George Akatakpo (@Gakatakpo)

**Hmm!! Come back again to see what George made of our #12daysofChristmas Poetry Challenge from outside the box!! The creativity and fun continues…**  :D

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