Dear Santa,

English: Thomas Nast's most famous drawing, &q...

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Every year I want to write you, and that “list” of things to do before Christmas, the one I never even get close to completing these days, just hovers in my mind. You’re on the “list,” I just don’t get to everything. I’m sure you don’t read blogs, especially ones that are little known and rarely read. I know you’re supposed to know when we are naughty or nice, but I’m sure you can’t keep up with grown folk nearly that well. And, besides, I probably am on some list for people who aren’t necessarily naughty, because they just don’t do enough to be naughty, but on a list of those who don’t accomplish much of anything, either naughty or nice.

But, on to my request. I have so much that I need and want right now. I worry about the health of my furbabies, and I need to have better health myself so that I can participate in this world more fully. I worry about money and about the fact that my house is a hoarder’s nest right now, oh, and falling down, too. I worry about my business and about what I really need to be doing in this world. I yearn to be happy again. I want to find true love. I thought of asking for all those needs, but I’m not sure you can do much about them. If you can, please go ahead.

I think it’s really the wonder of both Christmas and just life in general that I’m seeking when I think about writing you. You, “little old elf,” remind me of that sense of wonder, that whisper of magic, that I would feel when I came into the living room on Christmas morning to see the tree all lit, presents from you standing below. There was once magic in my life. I’d sit at night after my mom went to bed and just look at the lights on the tree, filled with wonder. I was able to find that feeling at times since she died, but as the years have worn on and life has worn me down, I find it less and less. It was always Christmas that renewed that sense of wonder in my life, and it was then easier to find it throughout the year. I don’t just want that in my life. I need it. It gave me hope and a sense of purpose. I felt that connection with all of life when I experienced wonder. I believed in possibilities, even possibilities that lay hidden within me.

I want to believe again that maybe, just maybe, you could help a child find all they dreamed of like in that movie “Miracle on 34th Street.” That remains one of my favorites. You were challenged. You were given something that seemed impossible. You proved you were real, that you resided in the hearts of people, and that you could actually do something in the physical world. I’d like to believe in that again. I never thought of you as God. Make no mistake. But, I have always believed that there were other “beings” that functioned in a way beyond human understanding. I believed that the fey were there, that elves wandered the forests, that magic was real. It was smaller than a belief in God, but it was almost a step towards that. If I could believe in the little things, I found it easier to believe in the big. Not that you are little, but in comparison to God, perhaps. I always loved the figurines with you honoring the Christ child. That made sense to me.

All my hope, whether in people or in things beyond people, has been challenged again and again in my life. I’ll find myself drawn to hope again, and then find it shattered. It’s not just that every person lets us down at sometime. It’s that hope and belief always seem to be an outright lie. I need those to sustain me, but I am not one who can easily live with a lie that goes that deep into my soul. It would not take a lot to lift me up. Just a little magic. Just something wonderful and unexplained. Something you supposedly can do.

Santa, I need magic back in my life. I need my sense of wonder renewed. I know you were once a real person, someone who heard a need and met it out of your own sense of devotion to God. You became something else as myth added to myth, the mixing of cultures and peoples. You became the elf at the North Pole, the one who gave children presents and drove a sleigh. I still look for that sleigh in the Christmas skies. I’ve looked for it my whole life, and there were times I suspected that I saw it. I just need that childlike wonder back. I need to have my skepticism blown apart. I need my rational mind to take a break, to go on holiday. I need wonder. I need to see it in the small things, yet I need it in a big way.

Santa, surprise me. Come into my life this Christmas and give me just a sparkle, a twinkle. Do the extraordinary, even just a tiny bit. Make sure I really notice it. Wait for that intake of breath, that lightening of spirit, that sigh of relief releasing the pains of this life. Bring me wonder. Fill my heart with it so that it can carry me into my life in a new way. Renew the child in me.

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~ by Janice Holladay on December 22, 2011.

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