Today, after he got home from school, one of the first things out of Sam’s mouth was, “Is Santa Claus real?”
I casually walked him a little distance away from his brothers and asked him why he was asking.
“Some of the fifth graders on the bus were talking about it,” he said.
“Do you think he’s real?” I asked.
“Yes,” he answered.
“Me too,” I said.
And that was it. Well, except for what seems to be the seed of an elaborate plan to somehow catch Santa in the act this Christmas Eve complete with instructions to “tell Dad not to go in the living room on Christmas Eve, and you too. And I’ll tell the brothers not to go in there unless they have to get to the bathroom.”
I’m curious as to what he’s planning. I’m worried that it may involve snares.
Part of me thinks it adorable and sweet and a sign of his impending maturity. And the other part is all “Fuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuck.” I vividly remember reading Maria’s post last year about how she never started the whole Santa myth with her daughters and incredulously thinking, “You can DO that? Why didn’t someone tell me that eight years ago?”
Because, honestly, I want to come clean. But I’m in too deep. The lies have stacked upon the lies and now it’s not just Sam believing in Santa Claus, but it’s Quinn believing in the Easter Bunny and it’s Jack believing that a giant tooth called the Tooth Fairy leaves him money under his pillow when parts of his body fall out.
I wanted to be all flat-out, “No, Sam. Santa Claus is not real. We made him up because that is what the whole damn world does, and it’s fun and please don’t wreck it for your brothers or your classmates, and it’s okay, just because we lied about that doesn’t mean you can’t trust us, and Santa is really more the spirit of Christmas and the embodiment of our love for you than an actual person, so really he does exist, right? But, no, he’s not real.”
But I didn’t say that because I didn’t really want to snap his little heart into sixteen pieces five minutes before I had to drag the whole family out of the house to go to Jack’s speech therapy.
Anyway, before I ask to hear your stories of Santa and the devastation he wreaks on the 8- to 10-year-old set, I leave you with this awesome response to my tweet about the conversation I had with Sam:
So, bring ’em on. I wanna hear your stories of The Lie and the devastation that followed. (Or is coming. Because, yeah, it’s coming. You can almost feel it, huh? It’s like a 500-pound reindeer lightly pressing his left front hoof on one of your shoulders and you just know the other 499 pounds are going to come down on you soon. And at an inopportune time. Oh…it’s coming.)