The Perfect Christmas Gift

Posted in Inspiration
on December 9, 2015

ThePerfectWhen I first started my blog, I used to share the short stories I wrote. At my core, I love writing about people and their relationships. It comes very natural. It is my firm belief that our stories are what connect us to each other. So if you have a few minutes, please enjoy this holiday short story! If you like it, I’ll write more!

Fallon wandered up and down the aisles of her favorite department store. She wanted to find the perfect Christmas gift for her sister who she hadn’t seen in over 2 years. Deena lived in D.C. and worked as an attorney for a well known firm. Fallon had married right after college and had 4 gorgeous children that she stayed at home to raise. Growing up, Fallon and Deena never seemed to see eye to eye and were known for their competitiveness towards each other. Deena was 3 years older than Fallon and anytime they interacted she always made her seniority known. She did things like facetiously pat Fallon on the head and never missed a chance to emphasize the “baby,” in baby sister. 

Fallon didn’t really understand how so much time had passed without seeing Deena. It seems they both took turns being “too busy,” or “visiting with friends,” during the holidays. It was obvious they were politely avoiding each other but Fallon couldn’t put her finger on exactly why. This year, Deena insisted on coming down to North Carolina and seeing her nieces and nephews that often asked about their favorite and only Aunt.  Fallon could sense that something might be wrong, so she agreed for her to come down. The last thing she wanted was family time that was littered with fake smiles and awkward conversation. Now she was in the mall completely frustrated about what present to get. She eyed a pink Kate Spate handbag and a Michael Kors bracelet. The only thing is she didn’t want to make it seem like she was trying so hard by buying an expensive gift. She knew Deena didn’t cook that well, so buying her “The Pioneer Woman,” cooking set was out of the question. Although Fallon would have liked that for herself. 

She finally decided on a perfume that she knew Deena liked. “The best bet, is a sure one,” she said aloud. A few customers gave her a look while she obliviously continued to the sales counter with her purchase. Her cell phone vibrated in her purse as she struggled to find it. It was her husband Vince. “Hey Fal, can you come on home? Your sister is already here and she’s just sitting in the car. It looks like she might be crying. I really don’t know what’s going on.” The sound of his voice disturbed Fallon because he wasn’t easily shaken. “Ok, I’m on my way,” she quickly spat out and threw her phone back in her purse. 

As Fallon pulled up into her driveway, she saw Deena’s silver Mercedes pulled over in front of her house. She got out of the car and was shocked to see Deena with tears streaming down her face. Her always-perfect-mascara was completely ruined. She knocked on the window and it startled Deena who was too wrapped up in emotion to be aware. She motioned for her little sister to come and sit in the passenger seat and Fallon did.

With a bewildered look on her face, Fallon anxiously sat down in the passenger seat and closed the door. “What’s going on Deena?” “It’s nothing, I’m just having trouble with my boyfriend,” she said cautiously. Fallon knew that Deena wasn’t one for serious relationships, so this surprised her. “Are you sure?” Fallon replied suspiciously. “I’ve known you all my life and I’ve never once seen you shed a tear over a guy. “It’s just that……..nevermind, don’t worry about me, I’ll be fine. How are the kids? How’s Vince?” Deena cleared her throat, wiped her tears away and sat up straight in her seat. She had put up her defenses. “Look, I know we don’t talk anymore but you’re still my sister. I don’t know why we’ve always competed with each other, but that doesn’t stop me from loving you. Maybe I’ve been a little jealous of your life and for that, I’m sorry.” Deena looked at her in disbelief “You, jealous? How could you with your perfect life, loving husband and beautiful babies? It’s me whose been jealous. I’ve lost everything, my job at the firm, I’m behind in my rent 3 months and I’ve spent all my savings. It happened over 2 years ago and I just couldn’t bring myself to tell anyone. I haven’t been able to find another job as an attorney and I’ve been too prideful to accept anything else.”

Fallon couldn’t believe her ears, her big sister who always had it together needed her help. In truth, she always wanted a closer relationship, but Deena always held back and never showed any signs of weakness. “So that’s why I’m here, I don’t have anywhere else to go.” Deena seemingly couldn’t believe the words that were coming out of her own mouth and tears welled up in her eyes again. “It’s okay, it’s okay. Anything you need, there’s nothing I wouldn’t do for you.” Fallon reached over and hugged Deena tightly. That moment dissolved the distance that had been separating them for the last 2 years and even their entire lives. The hug was long overdue. Fallon didn’t care about the details, she was just glad to have her sister back in her life. “Thank you for coming Deena, every Christmas without you hasn’t been the same. Now come on in the house, there’s a rum cake with our names all over it.” 

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