My nine year old daughter came home this Holiday week saying, “My friend Jenny on the bus… Well, she says Santa isn’t real.” I said to her, “Then how come my parents don’t know what Santa gives me?” and she said, “Because your parents are faking.” My daughter then looked at me with her eyes wide open as if to say, “Whats the truth here, huh? ”
I immediately thought about following my daughter onto the school bus and marching right up to too old Grinchie Jenny and telling her to zip it or else she’ll be getting coal for Christmas, coal I said!!! Why do all the other children need to ruin the Holiday spirit for the rest of the kids?
My belief in Santa was handed down to me from generation to generation. My father played Santa every year since I can remember. It was so exciting to see Santa come in the door and reach into his sack to pull out a gift for me. One year my mother even said to all of us children, “Whoever can get their mittens, boots and coats on the fastest can take a sleigh ride with Santa!” We all screamed and dove head first into the closet for our hats and coats. My sister was just about to put her mitten on when my Mother quickly yelled out “3..2..1.. buzzzz, too bad. No rides tonight. Say goodbye to Santa!” We loved this yearly tradition. None of us ever thought he wasn’t real, we didn’t care whether he was real or not. We just didn’t want it to end! The year before my father died, I was seven years old. I was sitting on my dad’s (Santas) lap and he was asking me what I’d like for Christmas. I remember looking into his blue eyes and thinking, “Hey I know those eyes and I know that voice. I had to catch my breath the moment I realized, “My dad WAS Santa!” I didn’t think he was dressing up like him, I knew he was the real Santa. I remember being very proud the rest of the night. Little did I know this was my last Christmas with my father and all those Santa traditions would be over. Now my husband has taken over my dad’s Santa traditions. He bought a beautiful Santa suit. He dresses in the garage then heads out around the neighborhood. We pound on the windows squealing with joy when we see him duck behind neighbors homes. I’ve started a tradition where Santa also leaves wrapped PJ’s on the front stoop. After my kids’ open there pajamas they change quick and run right up into bed. This is one of our most magical Christmas moments.
So, I guess the question here is, “when do you tell your children that Santa isn’t real?” I say why bother telling your children there’s no Santa? Those discoveries work their way out on their own. Believing in Santa holds the hope for us all. Santa stands for love, forgiveness and generosity. I will never have that conversation with my daughter. It’s not like the talk I need to have about the birds and bees. The “Santa” talk doesn’t ever need to be done. When my daughter has asked me if Santa is real, my only response has been, “Well I believe in Santa. If you do’t believe you won’t receive.” I’m sure one day my daughter will look at a Santa smiling then look at me and give me a wink. All I will ever do is wink back and say, “If you don’t believe you wont’ receive.”
This year my children wanted to tape Santa coming down the chimney. They wanted to catch his red handed. So we set up a camera to catch him and boy did we ever. Here he is bringing down our gifts and then again at my friend Frank’s house where he caught him on his security cameras. So, this is for all the non believers out there. The bah humbugs, the Grinche’s who say, “Santa doesn’t exist.” To that I will say, “Yes, Virginia there is a Santa Clause.