The here and now and a bit of way back then

I relived my journey to 40 and found there's so much more to say

Long may they forever believe……..

on November 22, 2015

So, he wasn’t quite the Father Christmas beloved by all in Miracle on 34th Street but he’s Father Christmas all the same. Or Nick as he introduced himself to #1, 2 and 3. How times have changed.

Meeting Father Christmas at the Big School Christmas Fair today


As it is still November and quite the norm not to be thinking of Christmas and Christmas related festivities for another good week or so, my brain was unprepared for #1 asking to queue up to see Father Christmas. #1 will only queue up uncomplainingly for something he is really keen to do. Otherwise every 10 seconds or less there will be declarations of boredom. But not so today as he waited patiently in line with all the other believers at the Christmas Fair held at Big School today.


In fact in previous years when I have suggested such a rendez-vous with FC to set in stone The Gift from FC so that there is no sudden change of mind two days before Christmas, #1 has always been a bit reluctant. A bit fearful of FC to be honest, as you would be. Great big looming man suspiciously the only person in the tropics wearing entirely inappropriate clothing for the weather. #2 has never been so sure either and #3 outright refused to go anywhere near him last year. She was much better this year as you can see but when asked for a group hug, she high tailed it out of the Grotto. Quite rightly so and adhering to the Stranger Danger laws impressed upon them.


Where do you sit in the debate over whether we should perpetuate the myth of such whimsical characters like Father Christmas, the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny?


Are we creating magical childhood memories or are we setting them up for bitter disappointment and breaking their trust in us, their parents, who they should trust the most. The ones who tell them not to tell untruths because Father Christmas and his Elves are listening.


I never believed in any of them because I was never led to believe in any of them. My Mum would have found the idea completely preposterous. Yet ask her about the Goddess Chang E who flew to the moon and lives there with the White Rabbit and that’s all ok. Actually someone should tell John Lewis that the man in their latest Christmas ad has a neighbour he needs to meet and there is really no need for him to feel so lonely.


Yet I hold all these characters from both cultures I cross with warmth and value. I haven’t picked a side and so we celebrate EVERYTHING. Living in Singapore #1, 2 and 3 celebrate the cultural festivals of several religions. Christianity, Muslim, Hindu. And they are all the more richer for it.


It was a very natural decision to welcome Father Christmas into our home, along with the Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, Chang E and lately Messrs Solo, Skywalker and Darth Vader. Because they are children and children should have something magical and fun before they realise that the world is not always magical and fun as we know ourselves.


Husband and I love being able to create some great times for them. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. And I have to admit it’s also good for us to do. Creating little traditions of our own and giving #1, 2 and 3 fun times and hopefully happy memories.


The reason why I’m writing about this today is because all of a sudden it occurred to me that it won’t always be like this. I’m not sure how many years there will be left where all three will Truly Believe like they do today. And I will miss that when one of them doesn’t. 
Perhaps it won’t make much difference. Perhaps it’s the Christmas traditions we create ourselves that will be the most remembered and time we spend together. I still love Christmas and Chinese New Year and Easter and Mid-Autumn festival all the same.


But of course it will be the first time they realise the world is not all that it appears to be. Though I really hope that our efforts to make it a wonderful place is enough for them to keep on loving it and all that it has to offer just as much as they do now. To keep an open mind about everything they come across and see the value in a bit of magic. Otherwise what dull lives we would all lead. 





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