For Timeless Thoughts this month, I thought I’d focus on something Christmas-related. Here goes:
I have a confession: I never believed in Santa Claus. Ever.
My parents are realistic people. From the start they wanted us kids to already be familiar with the difference between what was real and what was fantasy. By age 5, I was already knew those characters in Disneyland were people in costumes. By age 6, I already knew babies came from mommies- not storks. And for as long as I could remember, I already knew Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy didn’t exist (though I did still leave any loose baby teeth under my pillow because I knew my parents would leave me money).
I remember this one Christmas when I was around 6. My Uncle dressed up as Santa Claus to surprise me and my cousins. Before my Uncle approached us, my nanny pointed to the sky and said she saw reindeer but of course I didn’t believe her. Santa wasn’t real. Then my Uncle appeared in his Santa outfit and asked us kids to sing some Christmas carols while he handed out some gifts. My cousins and I knew he was a fake Santa but the whole experience is still a fond memory and one I remember clearly to this day. In fact, Christmas, in general, is still my favorite holiday to this day.
If you think this not-believing-in-Santa is some sort of innocence lost early, it’s not. It did not affect my childhood whatsoever. I still read and enjoyed fairytales, played pretend, spent hours daydreaming, and went on little adventures with my neighbors outside. In fact, I had and still very much have a wild imagination. The only difference was I knew that fantasy was just that: not real.
A lot of people can’t seem to grasp this upbringing but I am personally for it. I like to think I ended up fine.