My son Charlie turned two in October. This is the first Christmas he kind of knows what is going on. He has been watching A Charlie Brown Christmas every day for the past week. I’m not sure if it’s because the main character has the same name as he does, or because he loves anything relating to Christmas. He goes around the house saying “Merry Christmas” to each of us (me, my husband, the baby, the dog, the fish). He stares at the ornaments on the tree (and sneakily tries to play with them when he thinks we aren’t looking). He frequently requests our loud, jovial rendition of Jingle Bells. I’ve always cherished this time of year, but he is bringing it to life for me in a brand-new way.
There’s something extra special about Christmas through the eyes of a child.
“Seeing isn’t believing. Believing is seeing,” Judy the Elf so graciously reminds us in the 1994 Christmas movie classic, The Santa Clause. Whether you believe in the virgin-birth, an oil lamp that stays lit for eight days straight or a Santa Claus that squeezes down chimneys, Christmas is a time for believing. When I tell my son that Santa Claus will bring him a present on Christmas, he doesn’t question my sanity, he jumps up and down shouting the word “PRESENT.” How different every day could be if we believed in a little magic – without question, without sarcasm, without criticism. What do you believe in? Hold on to it. Have a little faith. Believe.
Don’t dwell on the past. Charlie obviously doesn’t remember his past 2 Christmases. In general, kids don’t dwell on the past. Each Christmas is a new start for them – a time to be with family, get presents, celebrate and laugh. They don’t associate the holiday season with painful memories. My grandmother passed away exactly a year ago. Our annual family Christmas party was replaced with a funeral; it was heartbreaking. While we should never forget those we love that are gone, I have found it is better to remember the good times and cherish the time we were given, rather than dwell on the pain of their absence. My kids keep Christmas alive. I know my Gram would have delighted in their little smiles.
“For behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.” As I watch A Charlie Brown Christmas for the 8th time this year, I still get chills every time I hear Linus tell us what Christmas is all about. Christmas is about JOY. It is about promises fulfilled, peace on earth and good will toward men. When I look in to my son’s eyes when his Dad comes home, when he’s given a special treat or just when he sees a friend after time apart – I see pure, unadulterated joy. Let’s make room for joy in our hearts this holiday season. Not temporary happiness, but deeply-rooted, ever-present, resounding joy. There we can find the true magic of Christmas.
Becky is a content writer, editor and social media strategist for Jennasis and Associates. She has an extensive background in the field of administrative psychology. Becky has a passion for writing and all aspects of social media. When she’s not writing, she enjoys drinking coffee, reading books, and spending time with her husband and two sons.