Santa Claus

I love Christmas!  I realize that using the exclamation point at the end of my first sentence makes it look like I'm screaming it....but I could yell that from the top of my lungs.  "I LOVE CHRISTMAS!"  I always have.  I am one of those cheesy people that just loves the holiday season.  I am fortunate that I've had no major tragedies occur around Christmas and have only happy, warm memories  of all Christmas' past.   I love Christmas carols.  I love decorating the Christmas tree and the house.  I love Christmas cookies and lights, and get togethers, and family, and drinking spicy cider and egg nog and Christmas pageants, and holiday cards...and well...just all of it.  It''s exhausting and exhilarating and heart warming all at the same time.  The first time Warren told me he loved me was next to the Christmas tree.  When we found out Zoe was going to be a girl, we were next to the Christmas tree as well.  My happy childhood memories of Christmas have now turned into seeing the magic of Christmas for my own children.  Part of that has always been the magic of Santa Claus.

I grew up believing in Santa and have never questioned raising my children with the same belief.  It's all part of the enchantment of the holiday season.  For me, it's a little like my girls believing in fairies, mermaids, and unicorns.    It's a sacred part of childhood where anything in the world is possible.   I get immense joy from baking cookies with them for Santa and leaving carrots for his reindeer.   Part of the wonderment of Christmas is finding the stockings on Christmas morning that Santa left for you.  Santa and the childhood belief in this jolly old soul is part of what makes the holiday season so special.  To me, it's a child's cultural heritage to believe.

Lately, I am not so sure what to do regarding Santa.   In Fiji, there is no Santa Claus.   There is not a big show out of I would imagine it to be in most underdeveloped countries.  There are not a huge amount of gifts, but rather families just eating a meal together and celebrating the birth of Jesus if they are a Christian family.  Many of the expat families here also don't make a big deal about Santa Claus.   I am not sure if in Australia Santa Claus is as much of the Christmas culture as it seems to be in the states, but I am sensing it is not....  I could be wrong.  I have friends here who are Jewish who clearly tell their children there is no Santa Claus.  I have friends here who are strong Christians and tell their children that Santa Claus is false and that Jesus is the reason for the season.  I've got other friends who just don't believe you should lie to you children and that ultimately how can they ever trust you if you lie to them about something so big for so long?   I don't have a problem at all with these friends not believing in Santa...but these kids are telling my kids that Santa is not real.   It's not even close to Christmas time, and Zoe and Andie have probably asked me a dozen times if there really is a Santa Claus.   What will happen when Christmas gets closer??

Maybe their belief is all for my own pleasure, because when I think about telling them that yes, actually....Mommy and Daddy buy those tears my heart out.  It feels like their innocence is being stomped right out of them.  I understand that they won't believe in Old St. Nick forever, but it feels too soon!  They are only 5 and 7.  Can I try to milk this for one more year?   Why does it make me want to cry?   Maybe it's a part of saying goodbye to their childhood.   I don't think I'm ready.  I guess I also fear their disappointment.   Zoe still believes in fairies, mermaids, and unicorns... while Andie is on the fence.   These mystical creatures of childhood are what make childhood magical.   Will Christmas still be as magical for them? for me?

Maybe I'll just know when the time is right.   Maybe I can share with them that we are all Santa Claus....because Santa is the spirit of Christmas and all of us have that within.  I don't think they'll get it yet...but I need to come up with some sort of plan.   Until then, I will just sit back and watch them mesmerized by all the wonderment that is Christmas.