Since social media has become such a big part of my everyday life, I’m always looking for interesting stories to share and what is trending now. It was a shock to see an article in the Independent entitled, “Should you tell your child the truth about Santa Claus?”
Every year millions of parents all over the world engage in a mass conspiracy to perpetuate this grand fiction. Being a storyteller, first with screenplays and now with novels, fiction has always been a part of my life and now is my main bag. It has always been what I have considered to be one of life’s great pleasures to lose myself in the magic of a book for five hours or suspend my belief for ninety minutes in a theatre. What fun would life be without fiction?
How could promoting the belief in a jolly old elf bearing gifts who travels the world in his flying sleigh in one night pulled by magical flying reindeer be a bad thing? Well, according to the Independent article, many people think it is lying to your children, which will make them grow up distrusting you, or that you are making it difficult for children to distinguish between fantasy and reality.
Life is difficult, and the harsh reality of a world which contains so much grief and danger is going to hit your children between the eyes soon enough. Childhood doesn’t last very long, and it should be a time where the imagination can run wild – an extension of innocence. A time when you believe in magic – when you see the good things in the world and in your fellow man.
After reading the article in the Independent, I looked around a bit more and found a wonderful letter written by American parents (source unknown) to their child, Ryan, which was quoted in “Brisbane Kids” http://www.brisbanekids.com.au/santa-real-tell-truth/
“The part of the letter which touched me the most was:
“Santa is the magic and love and spirit of giving to others. What he does is teach children to believe in something they can’t see or touch. Throughout your life you will need this capacity to believe: in yourself, in your family, in your friends and in God. You’ll need to believe in things you can’t measure or hold in your hands. Now you know the secret of how he gets down all those chimneys on Christmas Eve: He has help from all the people whose hearts he has filled with joy. With full hearts, Mommy and Daddy take our turns helping Santa do a job that would otherwise be impossible. So, no, we are not Santa. Santa is love and magic and hope and happiness. We are on his team, and now you are too.”
Very well said, indeed. I think I believe in Santa Claus again. Maybe I have all along.
Kenneth Eade is a bestselling author, described by critics as: “one of our strongest thriller writers on the scene today.”