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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Tommy and the Meaning of Life

This has been the oddest Christmas yet. When do the warm fuzzies come? When do the good feelings make the stress all worth it? I get that the kids are older and so the questions are starting but the more I talk to people, the more I hear, "My kids never asked if Santa was real. We know they must not believe but they never let on that they don't." Why can't my kids be like that? Questions, questions, questions! Tommy came home from a friend's house today and while I was at a neighborhood party, I got a text from Nico that read: Hey, Mom. Do you have a sec? _____told T that there is no Santa and he asked me if I still believe. I said yes but now he says he doesn't think he believes. I should have written that in his text spelling so you could give me kudos for figuring out what he said. My heart sank a little because I knew I was at a crossroads with this whole thing. Do I tell or don't I?

I came home and Tommy and I had this conversation:

Me: So how many of your friends still believe in Santa?
Tommy: All but two of them and most of my 5th grade friends don't.
Me: So is it hard to talk to the ones that don't believe?
Tommy: Yes, sometimes. Mom, I don't know if I believe anymore.
Me (really hating that his friend stole his innocence): Okay. Let me ask you this, do you sometimes wonder if there is really a God?
Tommy (looking shocked): No! I know there is a God.
Me: You don't ever wonder if He is really up there when things don't go your way or why things are the way they are? You never get made at Him? (I hated this part but I needed to put it that way in order to make my point.)
Tommy: No. I know He is so busy, Mom, curing things and taking care of things that He can't do it all.
Me (my heart hurting a little that he thinks God is too busy to hear him): I get mad at Him sometimes and wonder if He is listening. Sometimes when things happen that I don't want or He doesn't answer a prayer, I want to ask, "Where is He? Why isn't He helping or what is He thinking?"
Tommy: You do?
Me: Yep and I have friends that don't believe in God.
Tommy: You do?!
Me: Yes and even though I know He is real, my friends don't and even though I know He is here, sometimes I question Him and how He does it all. It's okay to question sometimes.
Tommy: Yea, I know. Do you ever look around and wonder how everything and everyone got here? Some people say it was an asteroid that hit but an asteroid can't give us grass.
Me: Doesn't it make you think there has to be a God? How else would everything get here?
Tommy: Yes. God had to do it because He can do everything and not even explain why. Hey, maybe the same is for Santa. Maybe he can deliver all the toys and I don't have to understand how he does it.
Me: Yep. The thing is, with my friends that don't believe in God, we don't talk about it because they believe what they want and I believe what I want. (This is a topic for another post.)
Tommy: So when I talk to my friends that don't believe in Santa, I shouldn't talk about him because we believe different things.
Me: Yep. (I thought the conversation was done but I could still see the wheels turning in Tommy's head.)

Tommy: Sometimes I wake up on Christmas and I see what Santa brought and I want to say, "Santa, what were you thinking?" (Great...just great...good to know I am batting 1000 in that department.)

I know it is probably time to tell them and maybe it is selfish of me but I am not ready to let them go yet. Seeing Belle's reaction to the elf and Tommy's sadness in his eyes when asking if Santa is real tells me that they aren't quite ready either.


At December 18, 2011 at 11:29 AM , Blogger Heather said...

So sweet Ann,
You are making me now question if I should tell Tommy about the Cubs? But I too believe they someday will win a World Series. Don't be so hard on yourself, there is so much magic in believing. You are such a great mom.

At December 18, 2011 at 6:38 PM , Blogger AnnMarie said...

Thanks, Heather! I needed to hear that right now. That makes me laugh about the Cubs...spoken like a die-hard Cub fan. No harm in believing, I don't think.


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