The Big Secret.
A swift catalogue of Rockwell-esque memories flashed through my head: my mom calling “Santa” when I glared at my peas; the Space Needle’s red blinking light becoming Rudolf’s nose; nestling all snug in my bed listening intently for reindeer hooves; the empty cookie plate and drained glass of nog; willfully disregarding Santa’s handwriting being exactly. the. same. as my mom’s. The list, like Santa’s, goes on and on. There’d be no Santa bribing, no hiding elves on shelves, no racing to bed on Christmas Eve, no Miracle’s on 34th Street, or 26th Street, as the case may be. No…magic.
But what price my little girl's sanity?
But it still makes me sad. Part of childhood is wonder and discovery and adventure and believing in things we grown ups are too boring to ponder let alone be charmed by. Have we taken that from her – taken away part of her imagination? Her fantasy?
We chalked it up to being That Year with That Photo which we will someday show her fiancé as she glares at us with betrayal and vengeance. Yet here she was, a year later, my sweet little girl, shaking, tears pooling in her big Susie Loo Who eyes. Not in front of Santa himself, but by just looking at last year’s picture of her - er, us - with Santa. And while we have a “therapy jar” along with her college savings fund, I did not want her to have post-traumatic-stress about Christmas. Because, much to the chagrin of the Grinch, one cannot hide from Christmas.
That’s all I needed to hear. Too bad mermaids don’t have a holiday. But maybe we could make one… I see lots of water on the hardwood floor and more money in the therapy jar.