Two days to go before Christmas and the way Kira thinks about Christmas will be set for her entire childhood. We have the opportunity and the responsibility to teach her some important truths. I am feeling the pressure. At night we often take Lucy for a walk in the neighborhood to see the Christmas lights. She’s drawn to the sparkly snowmen and sometimes she gets out of the stroller and seeks the courage to go touch it. She doesn’t get that close but she does introduce herself. “Hi, I Kija”. In case you haven’t heard she can say Kira but she calls herself Kija. I find myself calling her Kija at times and wonder will that become her real handle? A friend of mine has a daughter in college who is still called Doodle because she was daddy’s “doodle bug”.
Anyway, we pass a santa in a blow up car. I haven’t mentioned Santa once to her and she goes to a Christian preschool so I know he’s low in the Christmas herd there as well. She asked if she could go drive that car. I said “someone is already driving it, do you know who it is?” She thought for a moment and said, “Jesus”. I liked that answer. I told her she is right Jesus is always driving the car.
I am hoping this means she is grasping that all the hullabaloo of decorating, parties, trees, and lights means something about Jesus. We have a nativity of Jesus, Mary and Joseph in our yard. Kija likes to go talk to them. She offers them food and will sometimes pick up the baby and comfort it asking if it is cold. We say over and over, “Jesus was born at Christmas” and soon I hope she will know it was to save the world.
I was out shopping in the afternoon for crazy socks to put in the boys stockings. I considered buying flannel footie pajamas for them all only for the photo op that would follow. It was crowded, people were grumpy, and everywhere I heard children being threatened that Santa won’t come if they continue whining. I will not manipulate Kira’s behavior with the threat of missing a mountain of toys. Let’s start with skipping the mountain of toys all together! Our gifts are low key and sentimental. Often I admit I think of what I would like to buy her…a pink big wheel…a really nice play kitchen…a white fur bean bag chair…a real pony… and I stop. I will not go out and add things to the tree now. In a few weeks it is ok if the pink big wheel shows up in our garage and it is even better if she doesn’t associate it with the Christmas tree. It isn’t that she’ll never have those things she just won’t associate them with Christmas.
We’re going to Watch the Nativity movie with Kija and we’re going to take her to church on Christmas Eve. Then we will read Luke 2 together from the bible. We will probably forget to put out cookies for Santa. She won’t look up the chimney and wonder how a fat guy can fit down there. She won’t have the insecurity of knowing someone strange can get into the house at night. It probably won’t be so magical for her. I’m not anti-Santa. I just won’t promote him over the truth. Kira doesn’t need the magic. Her life is already the absolute epitome of the word BLESSED. If I have anything to do with it God will get the credit not an old man with reindeer.
Some day she will appreciate our integrity when she adds up her experiences and realizes we didn’t hype up Christmas but we kept it real. And even then it will be laced with fun and I won’t lose parenting points. I know this because she’s not our experiment. They boys already tell us so.