Thursday, December 18, 2014

Even God Believes in Fairies

In the days following Natalie learning "The Truth" about the Tooth Fairy and Santa -- I asked her if she was doing okay.
"Yeah, I'm good."
"Really?"
"Yeah, I found this star leaf on the playground at school.  It is magic and allows me to grant wishes."
"Hmmm..."
"Look, it's snowing.  I did that."
Natalie then went on to explain how she knows all about fairies.
"You see, before I was born God was going to make me a fairy, but then you had begged Him to give you a daughter.  So, He took most of the magic out of me.  He took out the little and he took out the wings, but He left a little bit of magic in.  I'm actually a fairy girl."
"When did you learn of this?"
"The other day...I think God knew I was really sad about the Tooth Fairy not being real so that's why now I can grant wishes.
"Really."
Yeah, my friend Bella wished to be able to fly."
"Wow. That's a tall order."
"Tell me about it."
"Ella wants to be a Jedi with a green light saber...I don't know how I'm going to make a light saber. And...my teacher, Mrs. Raymond, asked for it to snow up to her big toe tomorrow and for it to be sunny the next day."
"I see..."
Dear Lord:
Thank you for keeping the magic alive in my fairy girl's heart.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

He's Some Kinda Wonderful

I pride myself on being honest...but when I became a parent, I traded in some of my honesty cards in favor of developing a sense of wonder and magic with my children.

Today, the house of cards came crashing down after Natalie began grilling me about the Tooth Fairy's responses to the letter she'd left her the night before. She'd lost a molar (3rd tooth in a month) and had set out her Little Critters tiny bed with blanket along with a few Cheerios, a button and a glass bead (because everyone knows fairies love found objects...especially shiny things).  She figured her fairy was tired and hoped she might rest and enjoy a bit of refreshment before leaving our home.  In my desire, to play the role best, I went as far to figure out what my fairy name would be by using the Fairy Name Generator program.  I wrote, erased and rewrote my answers several times...not quite sure if I'd disguised my handwriting well enough...or written small enough.

My fairy name is Bindweed Goldwitch.  I chose elderberries as my favorite food and honeysuckle as my favorite color.

Initially, Natalie was thrilled to find some of the Cheerios she'd left had been eaten, the tiny bed unmade and answers to her questions...but something nagged at her and she continued to fire questions at me.  I did my best to deflect and evade, but something nagged at me, too. She wanted the truth. I found I could no longer lie...because the truth about little white lies is that they always need to be fed by bigger ones. In my head, a battle waged between preserving wonder and maintaining trust with her.When I finally conceded, she stopped, eyes wide and unblinking.

"What?...you mean it was you who left the glitter?...who ate the Cheerios and the berries and ...
TEARS
"So...Isaac was right," she continued.
TEARS
"I have no more wonder.  I'm heartbroken...no Santa either then...wait..."
"So there's no phone number for Santa?"...
Oh, the jig was up.

I held her and cried, too.  I cried for her loss of innocence and wonder.  I mourned over the loss of watching her engage in the fine art of fairy house-building. I had tried to break the news gently by sharing with her The Truth About Santa letter so as to preserve her love of magic. Instead, it only made her wail more

"I guess I'll just have to be an author then!" she cried.
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"I was hoping to grow up to become one of Santa's elves!...but now I'll just have to be an author," she explained.
Oh boy.  What have I done?...I've ruined my kid. And then another thought struck me -- what if she stops believing in God?...I've asked her to believe in so many things that weren't true...but God, although we've never seen him...He's different...but, what if she doesn't believe in anything I say anymore?...
Between sobs, I interjected, "But, you know God is real, right?"
"Of course I do," she responded indignantly.
I breathed a sigh of relief as I realized my child's sense of wonder was still very much intact.

Dear Lord:
Growing-up is so painful.  Thanks for giving me smart kids to help ease the process along.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Musings From Natalie #106

"Mom..."
"Yes, Natalie."
"You're everything to me."
(Dear Santa:  All I want for Christmas is... the ability to freeze time.  Thanks)


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

I Won't Grow Up

Growing up is painful...more so for the parents.

My kindergarten year I noticed something...Santa wrote just like my mom. I remember feeling both sad and disappointed. I did NOT want to give up on the magic and frankly I was ticked. For years I gave my mom a hard time about how she could have done a better job of disguising her own handwriting.

My poor, Mom.

Fast-forward 37 years (ack. where does the time go?!)...I now find myself with two kids, who at 5th and 2nd grade, still believe in Santa. I'm faced with the opposite problem...

I'm dreading it.

I remember when my friend Kelley shared her experience in explaining Santa to her daughter.  She envisioned that her daughter would think of her as a sort of super hero.  But, in reality, her child's reaction was more like learning her dog had just been run over by a car.

This morning the kids created new Christmas lists.  In Natalie's first draft she listed a large, empty refrigerator box and a whoopie cushion.  Her new list includes 14 pieces of a coal and a sleigh bell.  These lists are glimpses into their sweet, innocent selves.  I'm having a hard time letting go of that.

The kids asked me to take their letters to the special silver North Pole mailbox that arrived in our town a few weeks ago.

I've decided I will wait until they come home from school...so we can mail them out together.

It seems, I'm not ready to grow up just yet.


Monday, December 1, 2014

Deep Thoughts From Noah #55

Noah: "Mom, when you were a kid, were you in Music Makers?"
Me: "No, our school didn't offer music class."
Noah: (reflective pause) "Oh, probably because music wasn't invented yet."