Monday, January 2, 2012

No more Christmas for the rest of days?

"There's no more Christmas for the rest of days?" asked The Big Fella this morning, as we took down the Christmas tree.

He sounded most concerned.

"No, Christmas will come again next year," I assured him.

I didn't add that the magic of Christmas is fleeting. And he'd do well to enjoy it while he can. Dangerous thoughts, best kept to yourself.

His innocent question sounded rather final, and in some ways it is.

Christmas comes but once a year. And our magical belief in Santa occupies only a few years of our life.

At best it lasts from about 3 to 9 years - from the time you're old enough to realise something exciting is happening, until the time your older brother or neighbour tells you there's no such thing as Santa.

If you're from a family with little money, the magic may be even more fleeting. Or more about longing, than fulfillment.

As adults we tell ourselves the magic of Christmas returns when we have children or grandchildren, and can share in their anticipation leading up to the big day and the joy of Chrismas morning.

To some extent that's true. But it's a different kind of joy to truly believing that Santa is real and your wishes really can come true.

I guess The Big Fella's comment really made me think about the loss of innocence - the innocence of childhood, which seems as fleeting as our belief in Santa.

As The Complicated One heads off to the big wide world of school, it's on my mind a lot.

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