It's that time of year when parents of young kids wonder if their children still believe. I know around my kids' school, it's a hot topic. My children are 11 and 8 and while I'm sure this will be the last year for the oldest, I don't want it to be for the youngest. But it seems the curtain gets pulled back earlier and earlier each year. When I told another mom about my oldest still believing, she scoffed and figured my oldest was pulling my leg.
What's wrong with her still believing? This very question got me thinking about when I witnessed the big reveal and to be honest, I don't remember. Most may know I had a sketchy past. We were poor and moved a lot. So holidays and special events were hard. I don't recall a moment where I felt I'd been lied to or found out all mythical creatures were false. I think I always knew but still held on to the possibility of magic.
Although I do remember figuring out about the Tooth Fairy. I must admit, I'm a snooper!
I remember one year we didn't have enough money to get a tree and with all the moving, we didn't have ornaments to cover one if we did. So I made one out of paper and taped it to the wall. I was proud of my paper tree with crayon colored ornaments.
Christmas morning rolled around and I wasn't surprised to find not a single gift beneath the tree. At the age of 10, I was disappointed but understood times were tough around my house. And I think I still wanted to believe in the idea of Santa Clause. Maybe he got lost. Maybe he ran out of toys. Maybe there were other children out there that needed them more.
That morning, a true miracle happened, or at least to my 10 year old self, it did. Late in the morning, my aunt and uncle arrived at our house. We hadn't expected them since they lived over an hour away. They came into our small home with an armful of brightly colored packages. And one box was for me. I slowly unwrapped the shiny colored paper to reveal a shoe box.
They'd given me a brand new pair of white Nike tennis shoes. They weren't fancy. They didn't light up or boost about making me jump higher. In fact, I'm sure they were the ugliest pair based on fashion standards.
But they were mine. All mine.
And that's what I want my children to believe in. The spirit of Santa Claus. Because when the day seemed dark and when a 10 year old kid gets nothing even when they're good all year, a Santa rides in on a late model Nissan with a brightly colored box with thier name on the tag. I cherished those shoes for years and had a hard time parting with them and what they meant to me.
So folks. Hug your kids tighter this year and share a little magic with them. Because even if they know the "truth", they can still believe.