The other day I stood in a queue with families of all shapes and sizes with a child I was taking to see Santa.
The reason I’m stepping back is to share the sense of solid anticipation and dream I could feel in the queue: the nine year old leaping up to the covered door to see if he could see Santa through the space between the covering and the door because he still believes, the five year olds with such great seeing skills yet they still believe, the parents, the carers, the grandparents, uncles, aunties, cousins, second cousins, friends as well as distant relations becoming closer.
And the thing was when we got into the room, Santa didn’t like one child but found it easy to like others.
I was so shocked.
And then I thought, I’ll write this.
One child excitedly sat down next to Santa found straight away that he had to accommodate a wait before Santa spoke to him and the back of his chair being rocked from side to side by Santa, not in a good way.
Not that the child found it difficult to sit on the chair but it knocked the wind out of the child’s sails so that suddenly everything was quiet.
Because Santa didn’t like this child? Or, for whatever reason, Santa couldn’t talk to that child in a relaxed way. There was silence where there should have been, a ho ho ho and ‘what do you want for christmas?’
It was weird.
Then more silence and then Santa eventually asked ‘and what do you want for Christmas then?’
The child said quietly: ‘I’d like a skate board’ And Santa said:
I couldn’t bear it any longer as I stood in the queue with my child:
“Wow!, Santa, skateboards aren’t dangerous, they’re AMAZING, aren’t they? Santa, isn’t that a GREAT choice of present?’
Santa grudgingly said …’yeees’….
Wow! I said, ‘You’re so lucky, I hope you get your skateboard. Isn’t that great, Santa?’
Because Santa had started a process of rejection and exclusion by witholding the power he’d been given with his Santa suit (and his DBS certificate) to include every child who came to him with Christmas dreams of a sleigh laden with skateboards, pokemon, lego, ninjago
Above The Bright Bricks Team’s Lego Santa currently in Liverpool One (story and image courtesy of The wonderful Liverpool Echo)
When someone excludes a child from their own dreams it makes most people cringe. They step in, aware of how precious every child is.
Good job it’s Christmas: all the world’s a stage and you can take the initiative, do a small thing that gets an embarrassed laugh from everyone else who felt, like you did for that one child.
The child hopped off the chair. (Nothing wrong with the child, something really wrong in Lapland though).
Give, receive, reveal your heart and mind, ask and think, reflect.
War is over if you want it.