I remember when I was in 8th grade (14 years old). My mom came into my bedroom just a few days before Christmas. She was in a serious mood that day and I remember thinking, “Uh oh, I’m in trouble.”
She asked to sit on the bed with me so that we could have a special talk. I nodded, not sure what this was all about at all. Did I get a bad grade? Did I forget to unload the dishwasher? Taking my hands in hers and turning to face me, she looked gently into my eyes.
“Yvonne, I have something to tell you. I know you may feel disappointed, but you need to know that your sister (who is 3 years younger) came to me this morning after breakfast and told me that she didn’t believe in Santa. She told me that she knew that Santa was actually Dad and me,” the words flew out of her mouth in a visible flurry.
She took a breath and then just stared at me, waiting for my reaction.
“I know Mom,” I quietly said to her as she squeezed my hand.
“You did?” The breath she was holding suddenly whooshed from her. I realized she had been nervous to tell me. She thought she was breaking the news to me. “But you never told me. Honey you’ve been acting like you believed in Santa and I was worried. I didn’t want to be the one to tell you, but now that your sister has told me that she knows, well…I just couldn’t allow you to go on believing. Why children would make fun of you!” She giggled nervously, much relieved to hear that she would not be known as the ‘Mom who told her child that there is no Santa Claus.’
“But why didn’t you tell me that you knew?”
“Because Sissy still believed and I love all the Christmas Spirit that believing in Santa brings to our house. Why would I tell anyone that I knew when it was fun to get caught up in the magic of Christmas? I didn’t want to ruin it for Sissy or for me quite frankly. It was more fun to pretend to believe.”
“Oh you are such a little Mommy to your sister. Of course you knew. You were just pretending. I get it. Ok then,” she squeezed my hands again, kissed my cheek and started to get up smiling.
“But Mom, can we pretend to believe anyway?”
“Sure, I guess so. No harm in that. Just don’t tell anyone,” she replied.
True story…but I never stopped believing and below are the reasons why…please indulge me…
Because I would love for Christmas to last all year long. I love singing Christmas carols and the old hymns in church on Sunday. They are my favorite songs by far. I love the frosty cold, so that I have to snuggle up in my footie pajamas at night under the covers. I love to watch the way the snow falls gently to the ground at night under the outside light. I love how snow falls in all different ways. I love the magic that Christmas brings us all, that spirit of giving, the spirit of friendship, and most of all, the spirit of love. I love that most people act happy around Christmas. We get together with friends and family whom we haven’t seen in awhile. Everyone seems joyful, even Santa who says ho ho ho! I love to give special presents, knowing that the gift is in the giving even when the gift is small. Not to mention, I love to receive gifts and to unwrap them with enthusiastic anticipation! I love to sit down with our family to eat a delicious meal slowly and with great gusto. I love that we all take time to just be with each other instead of rushing about for work and school. I love the white lights on the Christmas tree and the tradition of decorating it with the old ornaments from our ancestors. I love setting up the creche with the little manger animals and being able to move them around and seeing the angels who watched over them all. I loved the train set that my Dad used to set up around the tree every year. I loved imagining I was the conductor, stopping and starting the Lionel engine and 3 cars. I love hanging the stockings from the mantle hooks. I love the smell of fresh baked cookies and how they seem to melt in my mouth, bending with warmth. I love imagining that I can have whatever I ask Santa for ~ world peace, a loving relationship, being debt-free, helping others, good health, the ability to shine my essence for all to see and to honor and love every person I meet. I love the greenery of Christmas, sparkling red and green, silver and gold (remember the song?), and watching the Christmas specials on television at night. I love to listen to the superb silence on a cold winter’s night, imagining that I hear sleigh bells in the distance. I love how so many people say, “Happy Holidays” and “Merry Christmas” with a smile. I love the generosity of gratitude that is shown at this time of year. I adore writing and receiving Christmas cards! I put them up on my refrigerator for all to see how the kids have grown over the year. I love to hear from old friends and new friends, catching up on life. I love the magic of flying reindeer and how the red nose of one became a shining gift of light! Thanks Rudolf! I love the candlelight of Christmas decorations. I love the sparkles and the enticing scent of a real balsam tree. I love to pick out special gifts for others at Christmastime. I love to have the store wrap the gifts for me. I love to choose a special moment each morning to just be peacefully grateful in my home. Best of all, I love all of the blessings bestowed on us everyday, but especially at Christmas.
What about you?