Thursday, December 5, 2013

The end of Santa

"Mum, is Santa real ?"

My nine year old sits cross legged on my bed, head cocked to one side and she gazes at me, waiting for an answer. 
I gulp, I hedge, I distract.

"Well, is he ?"

She waits on my reply and the longer I delay, the more insistent she becomes on a straight answer.

I'm looking into her eyes and honestly my heart is breaking. 
Big fat tears roll down my cheeks and I am trembling. 

Crashing around in my head, as I try to catch up with the transition is a running line of "Not yet, not yet, I'm not ready, I'm just not ready".

But she is trusting me to tell her the truth and with a few questions, I know she knows, I know it is time. 

Through tears I confirm her suspicion and with that, we reach the end.

The end of Santa, of the mystery and the childish stories. The end of little ones imagining reindeer flying through the sky. It's the end of milk and cookies, and reindeer food, of listening for sleigh-bells. The end of trying to stay awake to maybe catch a glimpse of Santa creeping through the house.

I know there is still fun, still presents and decorating, and anticipation of Christmas morning, but it's with a wiser view, a more mature understanding. 

I am still sad. Selfishly I hoped for another year or two before the magic disappeared. 

She asks why I am crying and I can't even put it all into words. How can you explain to your baby that she is still your baby even when she is big and smart and clever. How can you explain that even though you are delighted at the wonderful girl she is becoming, part of you longs for the simplicity of babyhood, and the days when your 3 year old simply believed everything you told them because you were their world. 

This morning I lay down on her bed beside her, and watched as she woke up. I explained to her that even though she now knows the truth about Santa, lots of kids in her class still believe in him, and that its important to keep the secret going for them. It's important that they find out in their own way, in their own time.

She just shrugged and smiled. "It's okay Mum. I won't spoil it for the little ones."

Another step towards grown up.

Have you faced this question? Did you bawl like baby too?


  1. Yes I have, didn't cry but remember that feeling of "don't want to tell you but truth is truth".. then the convo rolled on and I killed off the Easter bunny, tooth fairy and then for some reason had to explain how gay men had sex. Good Times

    1. OMG , that's a big conversation to have all in one go ! LOL

  2. Yes, I did. Lisa we're in sync today as my own post this week is about going through this with my own 9 year old. It is a sad milestone and Christmas is definitely a little different this year because of it. They do insist on growing up, don't they?

  3. Wow you did well to get to nine! I haven't had this conversation yet as she is only 3 but yesterday she over heard a friend tell me that there are 4 Santas in David Jones and spent the rest of the day asking me why...... so we will see how long I get :-) Money Mummy

  4. I love the end to this - that's what brought the tears to my eyes. Kids are so special...

  5. What a precious moment you have shared. And I love the ending xxx

  6. We are just at the beginning of our Santa journey, I am already hoping the end never comes! :)

  7. Mine just turned 4 and I'm getting the tricky questions, "Is Santa still at kindergym?", "Where is he now?". They all have easy answers at the moment, until she gets old enough to pick up on the fact I am a big liar :)

  8. Oh Lisa I am really dreading that stage, I wish they could believe in magic forever! I'm sure that she will continue to believe for others!

  9. My boys are just starting to understand will be interesting when I'm going to have to cough up the truth!

  10. Had a lump in my throat reading this. Love what you're daughter said about not spoiling it for the little ones. She was ready to know the truth.

  11. My 9 year old still firmly believes thankfully. I don't know how long I have left in terms of this belief. My first born lasted till he was 10 or 11, and it was a bigger issue for me, than it was for him! I really felt deflated at his new found knowledge, and like a little piece of his childhood had gone. And Christmas is different once they know the truth. The level of excitement on Christmas Eve and in the morning, is never the quite the same.


Your comments are welcome, please be kind and respectful. We all have different views of the world, sharing your view with gentle words is Lisa