My baby girl's bittersweet milestone

Kathryn and Santa, 2007

Kathryn went back to school after winter break last week and told all of her friends what Santa gave to her.  She was most excited, I think about the DS that mom and dad gave, but no return to school goes without mentioning the gifts from the man in red.

Her friend, Nate, however, managed to mention what he learned from his older brothers. “There is no Santa Claus,” he told her the other day.

And so, Kathryn came home from school on Thursday armed with questions.  My husband and I made it a policy to not lie to her once the question did come up. Instead, it would be my job to set her down and let her know the truth.

We came home from the store and she asked me again…”Mom, is Santa real or has it been you and dad all along?” “What do you want to believe?” “I want Santa to be real, but I also want the truth”. I told her exactly what I should have and explained why.  I told her that for generations, Santa has been a tradition in many families.  Parents mostly enjoy seeing the expressions on their childrens’ faces at seeing the magic of Santa. And so, it wasn’t that Santa didn’t exist. The spirit does! But no large man in a red suit commits B&E once a year.

Kathryn and Santa, 2008

She cried for all of two minutes before it dawned on her that it was her father and I who were enjoying the cookies each Christmas night. Then she laughed.  She realized it was her father and I who toiled over putting together a bike until 1 am when she was 3. She remembered it was her father and myself who put a large tent up the same night. She also realized it was her father who attempted to stuff a large pillow into her stocking just a few short weeks ago.

Then, the rest of it clicked.  She asked to see her baby teeth. I showed them to her and she enjoyed seeing all the letters she’d written to the tooth fairy with each tooth she placed under her pillow over the past 14 months.

She relished the thought of not having to wait for her tooth payout any longer. She mentioned immediate compensation.

She asked if we could still hide eggs for her this coming Easter, because it would still be fun. She also asked if she could still get an Easter Basket.  I said yes to both.

After that, she was OK with it. It wasn’t nearly as traumatic as I thought it would be.

It’s still the end of an era with my baby, though…  one that started on Christmas morning 7 years ago with two Pooh dolls, some Weebles and a little Care Bears push car.


About gespurr

Emily was born in Southwestern Louisiana and has moved over 20 times in her life through nine different states. Most of her life was spent in the Twin Cities of Minnesota, where she met her husband and had her only child. Both she and her husband are also only children. She graduated from Stillwater (MN) High School in 1992 and from the University of Wisconsin in 1997 with a BS in Journalism. Three years later, she met her husband, George, and they married in 2002. Their daughter, Kathryn, was born early in 2004. She relocated with her family back to Arkansas in 2005 after being away for 30 years. She currently works as a customer service representative for an insurance company and lives in North Little Rock. When not taking care of her daughter she is either cooking, working, cleaning house, sewing, gardening, knitting, crocheting hiking, traveling or spending time with her husband.

Posted on January 9, 2012, in Family & Marriage, Kathryn, Parenting. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Oh man, I think Santa is ending soon with Bear also!

  2. Alaina is just now starting to get the Santa thing. I don’t even want to think about it ending!
    I think you handled it really well.

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