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A child's perspective on finding out and acceptance

January 15, 2018
By Julie MacKaben - For Mirror Moms , Mirror Moms

I found out about Santa actually being my parents last year, Dec. 8, 2016. I guess I was pretty gullible considering that I didn't find out until I was 11 and in fifth grade. In my opinion, 8 or 9 is the reasonable age to find out "The Big Truth." But people find out at different ages and different ways.

I was advised by my friends. Well, they didn't actually tell me. They went around the table in art class saying how they figured out that Santa wasn't real. All of the stories seemed believable, so that day, 18 minutes before lunch, Santa soon became a hoax to me. At that moment, I felt angry. Why did my parents lie to me for so long?

I guess I'd been pondering the idea of Santa being real for a little while. When I hit age 11, I became extremely suspicious. I kept asking myself, Is Santa really real? Is it possible to give all the kids in the world presents in one night? Does it really make sense that Santa can eat cookies from every person's house without getting sick? Is it true that there are flying reindeer?

Grandparents are pretty obvious, too. I don't know if your family does this, but my family gives gifts from Santa in the stockings, to the adults too! My grandma got toothpicks in her stocking and said, "I didn't know you could get this brand in Georgia!"

That was kind of a clue that someone other than Santa was stuffing the stockings.

All of those questions started swirling in my head, and I couldn't sleep at night. The day I found out, I just wanted to tell my family that I didn't believe anymore, but I was worried my parents would be disappointed in me, and I would ruin it for my little brother and sister. So, I didn't say anything. Then on Christmas Day, it all became too much. I saw the presents under the tree, and I couldn't hold it in anymore so I ran to my room and cried. Then I told my parents.

This year Christmas will be a bit different.

Even though I don't believe, I want Christmas to be magical. Since the parents are doing all the work on Christmas Eve, you might think there is not much a child can do. That's actually not true. There are a lot of things older kids can do!

Most kids think they're too cool for Santa, after they find out, so they don't act excited on Christmas day. Well, that's a big giveaway for younger siblings. I plan to act excited this Christmas. I'll slap a big smile on my face and wake up my younger brother and sister early, and tell them to jump on our parents to wake them up.

Another thing that kids can do is make up things, such as, "I saw the reindeer's footprints on the roof!" "I heard jingling bells last night!" "When I checked downstairs, the lights on the Christmas tree were on, and nobody in this house turned them on!"

Even though you might be sad that Santa isn't real, you want to keep the magic alive in your younger siblings' hearts for as long as you can. But they all find out at some point. So, when they find out, tell them they are part of a "big kid club."



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