Did That Actually Work?

My son was completely on board with going to school today.

He ate something, he turned off the computer without argument, and he dressed with enthusiasm – undies, pants, shirt.

When we got to the socks and shoes, he decided he would rather sit on the couch.

He sank into the cushions.  My heart sank into my gut.

I was okay with his missing yesterday.  He was coughing and he really seemed like he wasn’t feeling well.

But today?  No way.  No way! He could NOT stay home.

I told him three or four more times to put on his socks and shoes.

And then he uttered the dreaded words, “no school.”

“Yes, school.”  I said.  “Please put on your socks and shoes.”

No response, except heavier limbs sinking into the couch.

Again I said “please put on your socks and shoes.”

Still nothing.

With huge and purposeful concern screwing up my face, I quietly stated “I’m going to have to talk to Santa and tell him not to bring any presents on Christmas.”

The little boy ran down the hall and grabbed his socks, then sat on the floor and put them on in front of me.  The shoes came next.

Did that actually work?!?

It did!

He understands the fairy tale.  Santa brings the presents.  Ha!

I cannot tell you how much that cheers me.

He always looks forward to Christmas.

We decorate the calendar, we mark off the days, we celebrate and we have traditions, but I never know how much of it he believes.

I have always wanted him to experience the same sense of wonder and joy that I did at his age – the anticipation, the merry making, the singing, the yummy food – all of it.

But especially Santa, because my feelings about Santa are hopelessly intertwined with my love and memory of my dad.

I’ve always had a lump in my throat waiting for the moment when my dad came to mean as much to my son as he does to me.  The Santa thing makes me feel like it’s actually possible.

To the little boy, Santa and Grandpa are both snapshots in front of him, one maybe not so different from the other.

If he gets the two a bit confused, I’m okay with that.

For me, they’re sort of the same person anyway.

Yes, the presents are foremost in the boy’s mind.  He has been circling pictures in the toy catalogs for a week, but  today I saw a glimmer of something in him that I haven’t seen before.

For some reason, it makes me feel hopeful about the holidays and about my son’s ability to live an enchanted life.  And that’s my father’s legacy.

This is good.

On Saturday, I was gone for several hours.

Our house rules are a little different when I’m away.  😉

For example, husband has no scotch tape preservation clause in his daddy manual.

I’ve decided I’m okay with that because look what I found when I got home:

We should all see our names like this at least once in our lives, right?

A few minutes after I arrived, he started methodically taping those pens to the wall down our laundry hallway.

He affixed them at a variety of heights and distances from one another.

I wish we’d snapped a photo of that too.

There was a mysterious order to it that we will probably never understand.

In case you’re a glutton for punishment, here are your pumpkin pals…

Day Nine 2010 Pumpkin Demise

Happy Tuesday!

P.S.  If I ever order veggie fajitas at Applebees again, I’m gonna ask them to go easy on the poblano pepper sauce.  My tongue doesn’t feel right.  😳


2 thoughts on “Did That Actually Work?

  1. The experts say “never threaten you kids,” but dammit, it works! (If done the way you did it, not physically or emotionally, of course.) And yay for Thomas for responding to that and for his name art – awesome.

    Oh, and I love the pumpkin progression – makes for some fun everyday!

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