"Keep scribbling! Something will happen." Frank McCourt

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Playing The Santa Game




Sometimes as adults we play the game of Santa for our children. And sometimes as children we also play the Santa Game.














Honestly, I don't know when I stop believing in Santa Claus...if I ever did. I really don't ever remember believing in Santa as a person who lived at the North Pole, who measured my goodness vs. badness and wrote it down on a list allotting my share of gifts by that gauge.



Maybe I didn't really believe in Santa because I think too much. (I've been told that.)

Or maybe early on I realized my Christmas gifts came from parents who always offered their children the best of Christmas celebrations with family and sometimes a neighbor or two.

Or maybe it didn't matter if Santa existed since I was raised that Jesus Christ was born to be my Savior. Maybe I didn't feel the need to believe in Santa since I had a great family and my faith. But, it was fun to play the Santa Game, so I played.


Like most parents, I too hyped up the existence of Santa. I now think my doing that was strange. But it was fun - then, I suppose.


As a child, when Santa was mentioned, I played along. I smiled politely. The Christmas, captured in these photos, was a good case in point.


One evening my family and I went to a neighbors (and friends) of my grandparents. Those neighbors had their niece and nephews there. Sharon, the little girl in the photo, was my age and we actually remained friends through high school.

I don't remember much about that evening, except we were given stockings with our names on them. I do remember the stockings were filled with candy and what else... I don't remember.


Do you want to know what I do remember? I remember when it was my turn to jump on Santa's lap to tell him my wishes and wants for Christmas, I noticed something very disturbing about him.

I was a little shocked.

I continued to play the Santa Game and delivered my politeness, but I was truly shocked. Then I looked into Santa's eyes one more time to be sure. Do you know what I realized? I realized that Santa was not Santa at all, but Sharon's dad.


That night, I watched as the others talked to him. I looked from one to another...child to Santa.


I started feeling sorry for his own children...that they didn't even recognize their own father, but instead thought he was Santa.

But was that true? I don't know because I kept that secret until the day I died...ok until now...or a couple of weeks ago when I shared it with Mary.


I continued to play the Santa game.... until I stopped. Do you see how I am?

How about you? Did you believe in Santa as a child? What did you believe?


Title of this Post, Playing The Santa Game,
was the creation of Techman of whom I work with. I showed him the photo of me with "Santa" and he blurted out Playing The Santa Game and I said, I am using it for my title.


The End.









Santa postcard borrowed from: farm4.static.flickr

16 comments:

  1. I remember feeling like it was strange when my grandparents gave me a gift from Santa Clause. I was 8 at the time.

    I don't remember believing in Santa at all. Weird.

    We never hyped Santa to our kids, but the schools and other children will do that anyway. Bit of a shame, that. I won't disabuse them of the notion for a few years yet, though.

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  2. I believed in Santa, though I thought he was very poor.....his presents to me and my little sister were never the ones illustrated on cards, or in magazines. When I discovered who Santa really was, I understood implicitly... They were the War Years and apart from the fact that my parents had little or no money, there was also the severe shortage of anything that resembled luxury. I loved my parents for trying to make two little girls so happy with very little...God Bless Them !

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  3. I never stopped believing, even when everyone around me joked and made fun of me. I wanted to believe.

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  4. I love your stories.

    Simon, I did hype Santa to my children, but I couldn't keep some things straight. My daughter told me recently how she heard me talking about one of her dollhouses that Santa was suppose to have brought and yet I said something different to a friend.

    WD, I love it when parents do all they can to give their children the best childhood. My folks always did super great in giving us the best hoidays with lots of celebration with family (and neighbors they worried about).

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  5. LV, I love your spirit. I also love a child who stays true to themselves in the midst of ridicule. PS I marched to the beat of a different drummer- still do.

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  6. JW, I had an older cousin who burst my bubble when I was still very young so I decided to be forthright with my children. I told them the story of a kindly gentleman named Saint Nicholas who left gifts in Dutch children's shoes and that as adults we honor his memory by leaving gifts in his name. We just shortened the name to Santa Claus. They loved it because when their friends told them there was no Santa they felt that they knew the real truth.

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  7. I guess I believed in Santa til I was about 10, but I don't know when I started just playing along. Later I played along for the sake of my younger brothers and sisters.

    It's funny, my debate topic post for tomorrow is about Santa's existence. I hope I don't upset anybody with it because I was just having fun with the topic. But I hope you check it and leave your opinion.

    Lee
    http://tossingitout.blogspot.com/

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  8. I think I was pretty old when I stopped believing! I was gullible and had an imagination that would justify Santa's existence in the face of any doubts.

    My daughter believes now and we're having a great time. Just hoping my 7th grader doesn't blow it for her!

    Elizabeth
    Mystery Writing is Murder

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  9. Bloggers it's -2 here in MO. brrrr

    Judy, I'm torn on whether to be upfront about Santa or not. It's fun to believe. And I haven't heard of one single person whose life was ruined because they were told to believe in Santa.

    Lee, I will check it out.

    Elizabeth, That's another part of believing in Santa that I don't like, trying not to spoil it for the younger ones. It's hard for me to keep my stories straight. :)

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  10. JW..I can't remember when I stoppped believing but I remember well the Christmas that the 2 boys ages 6 & 10 walked in on us putting out the Santa! I cried for 2 days!:(

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  11. Not a Santa story but a fairy one. when i was a kid i used to eat very less. i guess my parents were very worried with the situation and played a trick to me. My grandma told me that fairies leave candies, colourful pens and coins for kids who eat properly. And i found a coin under my pillow the next day. This went on like this. I found coins ,pens etc. even while picking mushroms in the forest.
    But one day I found out it was just a trick. You can imagine my mood. Fairies were ok but not real.

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  12. Whaa? Theres no Santa? I'm telling MOM what you said!!
    Your little sister,
    Tammy

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  13. Carol, I would have cried too. When I think I have disappointed the young ones....

    Yagmur, Well they were only trying to get you to eat. :) We parents and grandparents would go to great lengths to get our kids to eat and to eat good food.

    Tammy, It's time you knew. There's no need to tell mom who told you --right??? :)

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  14. I don't remember when I stopped, but I certainly liked it when my kids were small enough to believe. We would always leave out food for the reindeer.

    Your lovely journal arrived on Monday. Thanks so much again for such a nice gift; I shall use it for notes.

    Elspeth

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  15. I thought it was the coolest thing when I was six and my parents sat me down to give me the low-down on Santa and told me my dad was Santa. Woohoo, I thought, my dad was THE SANTA.....how cool was that!!! I'm so gullible.

    Have one terrifically blessed day!!!

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  16. Elspeth, I forgot about leaving food out.... My folks did that and we did it for our kiddos. Re:Journal - You are welcome, but WOW it took a long time to get there. The one I sent to Australia took a week. I think I sent them on Nov 20. Sorry it took so long.

    Nezzy, Welcome back!!! Hope you had a nice trip. That's a very funny story.

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