Today was November 25th! Exactly one calender month to Christmas, you scared yet? Breaking out in cold sweats? You should be because now begins the craziness....we will run around like blue arse flies buying a load of Christmas tat that no one wants and even the charity shops will be sick of in January, We buy and then spend hours preparing enough food to kill Michael Winner (oh now that's a Christmas present worth receiving)! I mean at what time of the year do you sit down and eat for two or three days, pickling your liver in what ever you can get you hands on, "oh is that a Babycham, I'll have that....mmm Remy Martin, yummy, now where's the Bisodol?"
Now I have three kids, two of whom are old enough to believe in Santa (could be my eldest son's last year, he's nearly ten) so today we did the one in Dundrum, baby and all! Now as you know myself and my husband have separated but it is amicable and therefore we all went to see Santa as we have done every year since we had kids (ninth year this year) Now I hate Santa, sorry guys, I love the whole St Nicholas story, the poor family and him giving the gifts, but Santa as in the guy in the Red suit is a commercial God! Coke might have put him in the red suit but every other commercial interest has encouraged us to love the ruddy faced (functioning alcoholic) man! I don't like him, never did, as a child the thought of a kinda old guy stalking me with his supernatural powers really freaked me out, then he comes into my room and watches me sleep before stealing some food (and always a sock would be missing replaced by a big plastic one filled with toys)!
I found it scary, I don't mind the fake Santa in Dunnes who sat you on his knee and smelt a bit musty asking you were you a good little girl before giving you some bit of water damaged tat from Taiwan. But the evil genius that was Santa terrified me! He had a list, and if you were good he put you on the good list but if you were naughty you could be on the Bag of Coal List (as it was called in my house) Even if you were good all year your mum could leave out a note on Christmas eve telling Santa you were bad and you were screwed! I knew at least two different people who knew someone who knew someone who got just a lump of coal, whatever they did was really bad (interesting these people were the same ones who knew girls whose heads were chopped off by passing traffic when they stuck them out of the car window....funny that)!
Last year my then nearly three year old daughter queued up to go into Santa's grotto, but when we got into the room when he was she freaked out....screaming thrashing about, I had to take her out and my hubby and son stayed. This year I held out very little hope that she'd go, but I knew she wanted to go, and was upset that she hadn't done it last year also I'm afraid I'll pass my santaphobia onto my children (could it be genetic?) so we pushed ahead. This time she waited (45 minutes) without even a crappy diorama t look at, she went in, demanded her gifts to be left downstairs, not in her room, took her piece of water damaged crap and having had her photo taken with her brother skipped out, proud as punch!
Now that was grand, the ex and I then brought the kids for a greasy lunch in Eddie Rockets and we headed in our separate directions. So tonight I'm putting my little princess to bed, she is talking about how happy she is having met "Santa's helperman santa" (?) I tell her I'm very proud of her, but her little face creases and she looks very seriously at me, "But" she says, "but mummy, Santa won't come into my bedroom will he? He won't be watching me when I'm asleep will he?" She was genuinely scared, so I comforted her and resisted the urge to say it's OK sweetie, he's not real!
I suppose where I'm going with this is, is it worth it? Lying to our children? I knew a couple who told their daughter from an early age that there was no Santa but to respect other peoples right to believe in Santa. They believed that lying to children is wrong, lying about anything is wrong. Now I have to say I keep the fantasy of Santa alive for the kids and my family but to me my old friend was on to something. We dismiss ghosts and ghouls and monsters but we want our children to believe in this other supernatural being. Do we think our children would lose out on something if we discontinued this lie? I think the only people who would lose out would be the shops!
Rant over....I really don't like Santa!