The Trucker’s Gift
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    “The Trucker’s Gift,” Ensign, Dec. 2003, 63

    The Trucker’s Gift

    “I don’t have to work on Christmas this year,” my husband, Ken, said. He was a truck driver, and for many years the children and I had partial Christmases and some late Christmases because of his work. But now all the children were married, and we had encouraged them to spend this Christmas at their own homes as we had done when we had a young family.

    It took only a minute for me to think of a father who would have to work on Christmas, so I told Ken, “Remember how it was when you couldn’t be with us for Christmas? I’ll be all right if you work and let some father who has small children stay home with his family for Christmas.”

    “Are you sure? You’ll be all alone.”

    “I’ll be fine.”

    Ken told the dispatcher he would work Christmas so a young father could be at home. Another truck driver standing nearby overheard the conversation. “If you’re going to do that,” he said, “I will too. I don’t have any children at home.”

    So it was arranged. Then another driver heard about it and volunteered to work on Christmas also. So three veteran truck drivers worked for three days in some of the worst weather our area had seen, and three fathers of young children were able to stay home with their families.

    As for me, I watched the snow fall and knew that although Ken didn’t have to be out in that cold weather, he had made the choice to be. And I thought of our 10 children and of the Christmases we had had together—especially the ones when we didn’t have their daddy with us.

    So for three days, I read, sewed, watched Christmas programs on television, ate my solitary meals, looked at the unwrapped gifts, and spent a peaceful and happy Christmas—grateful for my husband and his gift of Christmas to someone else.

    Illustrated by Daniel Lewis