Saturday, December 23, 2006

Death of Santa...

So, I wasn't quit sure any of you blog readers had the time, or the desire, to read my long posts describing some of the funnier Christmas moments of my strange and fantastic childhood, but as I know that at least a few of you have read them, and Kamilah was even bold enough to humor me with the request to "keep those stories coming" I have selected the next story to be included in the Christmas memories series. I warn you however, this story may be funny, but it may also break your heart, if you are indeed as tender hearted as I was at the young age of clueless...

So, I was whatever age you are when you should basically be able to figure out that the existence of Santa Claus is in reality the exisitence of the greatest hoax humankind has ever been able to pull off. I, however, being the imaginitive citizen of fantasy land that I was (and still am in many ways) believed with all my little heart that Santa was not only real, but he was more real then last year, and even more real then the year before, and so real that I just KNEW that he would bring my everything my little heart could possibly wish for.

Well, I am the youngest of four children, and therefore the last to have my dreams shattered by the knowledge that for some reason it is OK for all parents everywhere to fiercely lie to all children everywhere, to the point where we PAY old men to grow out their white beards and yell "HO HO HO" for a month in a desperate attempt to persuade our children that if they don't behave and stop hitting their sister and eat all their peas they are going to end up on the NAUGHTY list! I must admit, however, that if I were my parent, I would have held on to that leverage for as long as possible as well.

Anyway, so I was seven or eight or something, and I lived in awesome Boise, Idaho and we had a white Christmas and I was in heaven! I was all about ding dong ditching holiday treats on porches, and eating psuedo-treats off the tree (please see previous Christmas memory posts for details) and building men and angels of snow. It was the Christmas all seven or eight year olds dream of! And my Christmas list was long, oh so long, complete with a request for a horse and a kitty (these items faithfully remained on my Christmas list probably until age 15. I never received these items...and yet my belief in Santa, or at least that these were reasonable Christmas gifts, was unwavering...funny the absence of such coveted gifts didn't tip me off sooner...) and I believed will all my little heart that every item on my list would miraculously fit down my chimney and greet me Christmas morning, glistening under the tree.

Needless to say Christmas morning was a dream come true (again, in my delirious joy I failed to notice the whole no horse, no cat situation), I had received every thing (basically) on my list. One would think that the exquisiteness of this morning would have embedded in my memory forever all the gifts I received, but I can not to this day recall a single one. You may think this strange, but read on and you will soon discover why only one memory of this day remains...

After my extensive celebration I settled in to enjoy my loot. I distincly remember sitting on the step leading into our living room, surrounded by gifts, my little heart floating. I believe there may have even been shouts and exclamations of gratitude to old Father Noel. I was surprised to notice that my family was slowly gathering around me, such somber expressions on their faces. No holiday joy. No smiles of dreams granted. My stomach fell. A voice among them said, "Amber, we have to tell you something..." Fear gripped me. I thought that surely someone had died! I braced myself for the news of a fatal accident, a dreaded disease, whatever tragedy was strong enough to extinguish the Christmas joy.

Again, I can not recall who's voice it was, but someone said, "Amber, Santa is not real." Shock! Denial! Utter devestation! I was RIGHT! There had been a death, the death of Santa Claus...and the death of a little girl's heart along with it! I was literally devestated! I remember protesting, "But I believed so much!" and their explanations that they had to tell me because I had simply asked for TOO much! They had thought it was better to give me one last Christmas, get me everything I asked for, then let me have it! Now don't get me wrong, I love that they gave me the Christmas that all little girls dream of (sans pony and cat) but please, the next time a kid is too clueless to figure out this sad truth on her own, perhaps consider waiting until January, February, maybe even March before killing Santa...maybe she'll forget the pain by next December...

I am happy to say however, that Santa has not died. Santa isn't the big dude in the north pole that miraculously flies around the entire world in one night and somehow slips down your chimney without leaving a single smug of soot on your carpet. Santa is the Christmas Spirit, the Christmas Spirit that makes us nicer and more charitable and more Christlike, once a year, and something we should strive to embrace all year long...

1 comment:

An Ordinary Mom said...

It seems like this has been the topic of many parenting blogs lately - lying to your children about Santa or allowing them to have their innocent childhood. I think a balance in the middle is what works for me!