We’re off for a week in Miami to visit my older brother, Pablo, and his family. Dan, Jack and I are beyond excited with the idea of getting out of town for the holiday and spending time with family in weather over 30 degrees, but Anna gave me a little bit of a hard time, “We’re gone on Christmas? What about Santa?” I did hesitate for a quick minute before realizing that she was more concerned about missing fun parties than the old man with a white beard not being able to find her stocking.
The truth is that I don’t think our children ever believed in Santa Clause.
And I can’t even blame ALD. Long before ALD entered the equation, our kids were realists. They went through the motions, but they weren’t fooling anyone, “Mom – it just doesn’t make any sense.” It’s as if they came into the world a little jaded.
Or, maybe it’s just that Dan and I were too lazy to create a truly “magic” holiday.
Sure, we’ve always gotten a tree and decorated the house. We even put out cookies every year – and carrots for the reindeer. But, Jack and Anna always knew it was a charade. They went up to bed early on Christmas Eve without a fight so that Dan and I could set things up for the morning, and neither could really mask their rolling eyes as they saw the plate of half eaten cookies and the note left from Santa (even since ALD, Jack can still roll his eyes when he needs to).
Dan and I love family time and creating traditions and memories, but we aren’t very good at all the hocus-pocus required to create real holiday magic. Once we get through the planning and the cards and the gifts and the decorating, we’re too exhausted to keep up the performance. We also have done a terrible job at focusing attention on the religious stories behind the holiday. Yet another thing we have managed to mess up.
Despite scaring our children by not fulfilling our parental duties, we do appreciate the holiday season around here. More then the trees and lights and candles, it’s the holiday feeling that I most appreciate. Opening the mail every day and seeing whose faces are hiding in the envelops. The music that is always lingering in the air. How (most) people take an extra moment to thank you and wish you a “Happy Holiday”. With all the ugly in the world right now, a pleasant moment with a stranger can be a pretty magic thing.
Try to pause for a second this DecemBLUR – look past the lights and the trees and appreciate all the real magic that is around us.
Wishing everyone a very MERRY, HAPPY and JOYFUL season!