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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Picture Perfect Thursday XI - Santa's Little Helper

Santa's Little Helper
Originally uploaded by JayMonster.
The magic of Christmas. Ever year as parents we work hard to keep that spirit alive in our children. We work to keep the belief in Santa Claus alive... if just "for one more year."

When this picture was taken back in 2004, it was a really special time. While LatteGirl had already shown an understanding of the holidays with the anticipation of toys. That was really as far as it went. But in 2004 it became more. The "anticipation" became palpable. Her thirst for information, first a bit concerning to me, because I was afraid she was "outgrowing" it already, was soon put at ease, as I discovered that simply more detailed information about the stories was really all she wanted. She also started to really understand the spirit of giving that year. That you got just as good a feeling (or in her case "almost as good") from giving as from receiving.

It was also that year that I learned something new. That as much as I was trying to keep it "alive" for her, she brought it all back for me. Christmas wasn't a chore, or a season to "survive" any longer. It wasn't about "dealing" with family. She had given me back the spirit of the holidays.

And now, a couple of years later, as I ponder once again if this will be the final year of Santa Claus "mystery", I wonder who I am more concerned about. Who am I trying to "save" Christmas for... her? Or me?

Because, now I feel like I am Santa Claus. Because after all isn't it the "job" of Santa Claus to spread joy? To Bring happiness? To Give? Well, I enjoy those aspects more now than I ever have. And I give her all the credit in the world. She is Santa's Little Helper. She helped MAKE me Santa Claus.

As parents we all have become Santa for our children. And if we can remember that, while the "belief" may fade, the characteristics that we learned through our children do not have to die. We can always be more cheerful, more giving, and more loving to others. And after all isn't that what the spirit of the season is all about?

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