Saturday, November 17, 2007

The un-magic of Christmas

Maya's been champing at the bit to find out the truth about Santa. Tesia's been dodging her at every turn. "I'm not talking about this during dinner." and "Isn't it time for bed?"

She enlisted me to do the dirty work, so I did some research, talked to the ladies at work about their kids and Santa and tried to have the talk today. "Santa is a gift adults give to kids," was my ace in the hole. Ann actually lent it to me. And, well, it backfired but good. There was crying - oh, was there crying! - and there were accusations of lying. It was just terrible. And now I'm at home kind of feeling bad about it.

The good part about it, if there could be a good part, is that I delivered the bad news, so I'm the bad guy. She went home with Tesia, who turned out to be the good guy.

The whole thing went down in Northampton today, which was Bag Day, in case you didn't know.

For you out-of-towners, Bag Day is this abomination of a day when they (the Chamber of Commerce, maybe?) give you a bag and you take it to any store in town and you get 20% off one item in the store. Basically everyone in town participates and it's total mayhem. Don't get me wrong: I'm all for savings; I'm just decidedly not all for mayem. Had I realized it was bag day before we made plans for demystifying (and/or ruining) Christmas (after having a fun lunch out with her), I would have changed our plans.

The crying and wailing began in Haymarket and continued on Crackerbarrel Alley and became all-consuming in the parking lot by the Peter Pan station. The child had to take to the car while the mother and I had to talk in the outdoors about what came next.

I tried to reason with her. I said, "If the presents didn't come from Santa, who did they come from?"


"Who do you think brought you all those presents?"

More silence.

"Mommy and Auntie and Grandma and Pop and Grammy and Grampy and ..." This list went on for a while. "Look at all the people who love you and wanted to share the magic of Christmas with you!"

And then the wailing.

I feel like crap. I tried to do the right thing for the child, at her mother's request.

I'm hoping she can get over it by Christmas.


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