I believe in Santa Claus. Don’t you? He’s the representation of sharing, giving, happiness, laughing, bowls of jelly, cookies and milk and magic. He’s a big, red cheeked jolly guy. He comes with bags of full presents, squeezes down a chimney, travels around the globe in milliseconds, makes people happy and occasionally leaves coal in people’s stockings.
What’s not to like about him? And why is it that after a certain point in time, we decide that he no longer exists? Isn’t it better to simply believe and live in holiday wonderment than become a Scrooge and simply see negativity in the world? And when we stop believing, a part of us dies inside.
Some of us grow up sooner than others, and some don’t grow up at all. (My wife accuses me of being “just another one of the kids” all of the time – can I help it that I would really like some Xbox games for Christmas?) Perhaps that is why I try to keep the magic alive for Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, the Saint Patrick’s Day Leprechaun, and a few other magical characters.
There is a clause that kids should follow when it comes to Santa Claus, “I receive because I believe.” This can be applied to so many things in life actually, when you think about it. It is all about optimism and having faith. When you believe in something, it springs to life in your mind; with something as simple as the Tooth Fairy or as complex as a higher power.
“Good things come to those who wait” is phrase that many people have heard before. I think it should be changed to “Good things come to those who believe.” When you believe, you have something to work for, something to drive you. As a child nears Christmas, that drive is to be good so that you don’t get on the Naughty List. As an adult, it could be something as powerful as having faith in yourself, faith that pushes you forward into success.
As we grow older, this belief seems to wane and die out. We become jaded or disillusioned. Pause for a moment and think about what you truly believe in and when they stopped being important in your life. The one big exception to the rule is probably believing in a religion of some sort. But I want to focus more on the belief that comes from a child’s heart.
As kids, we live in a magical world, one where imagination is a governing force, where if you wish for something when you see a shooting star or blow out a candle, there is a good chance that it will come true. But as we mature, this innocence and magical desire inside seems to be pushed aside by reality.
I would say that the magic does remain buried deep inside. We, as adults and as parents, need to be sure that we don’t lose our faith in that magic and that we believe in it, as it will emanate from all that we do. Our kids will inherit that magic and pass it on to their kids.
So, be sure to encourage that belief in Santa, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy. Eat those cookies that are laid out on Xmas Eve. Put the green food coloring into the milk early in the morning on St. Patrick’s Day and blame it on the leprechaun. It brings your young kids magic to their hearts and will make your older kids remember how magical it all was and perhaps rekindle that spirit inside.
Do you bring magic to the holidays? Do you have Santa believers in your house? If you don’t, do try to make it happen!