A Christmas Surpise By: john duros


It was Christmas Eve. My family and I had just gotten home from christmas mass and we began to eat dinner. Grandma had brought her famous chicken stew that we ate every year. Dinner finished up and I said goodnight to my parents and I went up to bed. My sisters and I always slept in the same room together on Christmas Eve so to Sophia’s room I went.

I layed in bed but couldn’t fall asleep, just like any other nine year old on Christmas Eve. “Santa’s coming, Santa's coming” I continuously told myself. Just the thought of that kept running through my mind like a catchy jingle you hear on tv.

In a little bit I was fast asleep. Sooner or later though something woke me up. I heard a noise and convinced myself it was Santa’s reindeer thumping on the roof. Next I did what any other kid would do and walked out of my room and downstairs to see one of my lifelong heroes.

Here is where my life changed forever. As I left my room I started to slowly and quietly head down the stairs. Expecting to see Santa, all my pure holiday joy was stripped from me as my eyes lit up when I caught my dad wrapping presents, putting them under the tree, and even my mom writing the letter Santa always left my sisters and I next to a plate of cookie crumbs and a half full glass of milk.

I was in absolute shock. Immediately I broke down crying. My tears kept rushing down my face like a waterfall. I had heard people say Santa wasn’t real before but just assumed they were wrong. I could not believe what I had seen. It was as if a part of me was ripped off and fed to wolves. Someone I had seen as one of the most awesome people ever, I learned had just been a lie my entire life. I was extremely disappointed.

My loud temper tantrum then woke up my two older sisters and grandparents. They all hurried down stairs assuming something terrible had happened. None of them saw it as bad as I did. My parents tried to comfort me and tell me that her and my dad were just Santa’s helpers, but no, I knew what I saw, and hearing my sisters laugh at me really brought me down even more. I was as sad as teenage girl getting rejected by her first crush.

I stormed back into my room and continued to pout for a little longer. I think all my crying had worn me out. Not knowing how I would feel in the morning, I just layed in bed. I didn’t even know what to think anymore. My mind was as blank as a whiteboard. All this emptiness ran through mind as let I myself fall asleep for good, until morning where I would have to deal with my mess I had made on one of my most memorable Christmas Eve's yet.

A Generation's worth of Johns

What does my name, John, mean? First I looked it up, it means to be gracious. To me though it means enjoying the moment and having fun with everything you do. It’s hanging out with my friends on the weekends. Playing pass in the yard. And just being appreciative for every memory I’m able to make each day, good or bad.

My name, to me also means happiness. My name brings me joy every time someone calls it out to grab my attention. It brings me joy hearing my friends call me over. And it gives me pride every time I tell someone who I am.

I asked my parents why I was named John. It was my grandfather's name, handed down to me from him, and accepted with honor. He was born in Greece and came to America in his late teens. He worked to support his entire family. He was proud to do it. Humbled at the opportunity to take care of his loved ones. Every week he would say part of his pay back to his home country where the rest of his family lived. After many tough years of working long hours and saving his money, he was able to buy a house. This was a huge accomplishment in his life and when I first heard the story, I understood what dedication truly was for the first time. Not only had he been sending money to Greece for the rest of his family, but he was able to save up and buy his own house.

The Big Catch

It was fourth of July weekend. My mom took my sisters and I up to my grandparents lake house where we met my cousins and grandparents. I was about seven at the time and my sisters a few years older. We said hi to the rest of our family then we all loaded up onto the pontoon boat for a day on the water.

My cousin Peter and I decided to fish for a little bit. This was our favorite thing to do at the lake. We were so amazed by anything we caught, although we almost never realed in any fish.

We fished for about an hour, but no bites. I decided to switch up my lewer, I figured that could maybe give me some new luck..

It was almost dinner time now so we would be going in soon. I casted out my line and began to reel in. I felt a little tug but assumed it was just seaweed. Then when it didn’t go away I got excited. “Get the net” I yelled to Peter. Back and forth the fish and I went. My arms were getting tired. The fish jumped out of the water and made a splash like a whale floating off the edge of a waterfall. As I continued to reel it in

When we got back home, I gave the fish to my grandpa, he skinned it then cooked it for dinner. I got to have the first bite and it was delicious. This truly was the perfect day.

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