Since the day Oscar arrived on the planet he has always been a very logical problem-solver–brimming with common sense and wisdom that has belied his young years. So I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised that the concept of Santa Claus is causing him a little angst–not because he doesn’t like Santa but because everything that Santa is and represents is running counter to what he knows to be sensible.
We have always followed Santa from location to location–starting with watching his “arrival” in New York City at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade to the symbolic day-after-Thanksgiving trip to Providence Place Mall for the obligatory picture. There have historically been a few tears (usually right around age two) but never questions.
This, year, however, Oscar is noticing details that surely would have escaped me at his age, including the differences in Santa’s appearance from place to place (culminating in his recently noticing Santa’s tattoo under the loose sleeve of his red suit).
We have tried various methods to keep the magic alive for Oscar–including a visit from Sinterklaas, who left some candy in his shoe as he slept and an Elf on the Shelf. There was part of me that sensed Oscar may have realized that was leftover Halloween candy in his shoe and that he was merely humoring me by participating; and his first view of his Elf on the Shelf resulted in his declaring that the elf was obviously made of plastic.
Santa recently sent an email to Oscar letting him know all about the “special helpers” that Santa designates in the month of December to visit stores and the like. My astute son looked at me as I read the letter; and I could almost feel him looking right through me. I persevered and added, “If you want Santa to come to your house on Christmas Eve, you have to believe.”
And this is where I have left it and will leave it–because this truly is where the story ends. No more machinations. No more tricks. If you want to believe in the magic of Christmas, then you do. And if you don’t, well, then things seem a whole lot less magical. And that is what I wish for my ultra-logical son–a month or two of suspending your disbelief and giving in to the magic.
Because you should never be too old–or too logical–for a little magic once in a while!