All I Want for Christmas

by Sandy Swenson
December 9, 2019

‘Tis the season to be jolly, but while roasting chestnuts and jingling bells, I grieve for my child and his very tortured life. The joy of the season and the pain in my heart are like a tangle of tinsel, or competing garlands of flashing lights. My child’s stocking is no longer hung by the chimney with care and none of the gaily wrapped presents tucked under the tree are for him. Long gone, even, are the days of robes, PJ’s, or other gifts that might be safe for an addict. Sadly, visions of sugar plums are no longer what dance in my child’s head. He drags around his addiction like Marley’s chains, but only he can turn things right.

On Christmas morning, my child will be far away—my heart cracks a bit just thinking of this. But I will spend the day with family and friends, eating too many cookies and making new memories. Gifts of time are the ones that really matter. 

All I want for Christmas is my child back from the addict who stole him, but that’s not a gift I expect to find under the tree this year. Instead, I will wrap myself up in the peace of the season.

“I aspire to be a giver. A giver of love. A giver of good vibes. A giver of hope and strength.” ~Anonymous

Excerpt from Tending Dandelions: A Mother’s Story of Her Son’s Addiction

Dandelion STRONG

“We may often feel fragile, but we are strong. And we are many.
We have the power to overpower the destruction that addiction spreads.”


Sandra Swenson is the author of The Joey Song: A Mother’s Story of Her Son’s Addiction (Central Recovery Press 2014), Tending Dandelions: Honest Meditations for Mothers with Addicted Children (Hazelden 2017), the Readings for Moms of Addicts app (Hazelden 2018), and her blog.

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1 Comment

  1. Hi Sandy, please know that u, your mom power and team have helped me more than u know! YOu are a giver and I am so grateful. I have emailed before. All the resources on your mom power helped me more in 5 months than many years of programs, therapy, aa forty yrs of sobriety. My heart just would not heal til I met u and your team. My daughter is homeless in Chicago. Finally I am accepting and having a lot of happy days. Happy holidays to u and your family. Hope to meet the mom power team in the summer at your next retreat. Luvyou lots❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️Jan

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