Santa: large, in charge… and real!

Possibly one of the worst days of my life was when I was told that Santa Claus doesn’t exist. It was the end of the school day, and my friends and I were grabbing our backpacks from our coat hooks, chattering excitedly about Santa Claus and the gifts he would bring us, since Christmas was drawing near. One girl, Kimberly, had been listening to our conversation before she suddenly interrupted with the words "You know Santa Claus isn’t real, right?" My words faltered, and I merely nodded. At the innocent age of five, my world was shattered. After struggling with Kimberly’s outlandish statement for a while, I decided that it must be false. All the evidence points towards the obvious: Santa Claus does exist. How else do you explain how presents appear under the tree every Christmas? Skeptics say that children’s parents are the solution to this mystery, but this seems highly unlikely. If it were up to kids’ parents to provide presents, there would probably be many more unhappy children on Christmas morning; the rate of children receiving socks, ugly sweaters, jigsaw puzzles, and books would be higher than it is now. What self-respecting parents would actually buy a $40 set of Twilight-based Barbie dolls as a Christmas gift for their children? Only Santa Claus could have the generosity and the capacity to appropriately fulfill children’s wishes. As for the kids that do end up receiving socks or ugly sweaters, those children either asked for those gifts, or they must’ve ticked Santa off sometime since last Christmas. Another argument that frequently comes up against the existence of Santa Claus is that he has never been seen. First of all, just because something can’t be seen doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. The wind can’t be seen, but something out there created that ridiculously high snow drift in my driveway. You can’t say the wind doesn’t exist when you step outside and it feels 20 degrees colder than what the weather report originally said. You can’t see cold viruses, but you won’t be saying that they don’t exist after you’ve had your 10th cough drop and used your 50th Kleenex in the span of an hour. Anyway, the point is that we can’t rely on sight alone for proof of something’s existence. Santa Claus, like many things in this world, can’t be written off because no one has ever seen him; we all know he’s too busy reading children’s letters and supervising elves to actually show his face and have a social life. As a bringer of gifts to children, we need someone like Santa to set the perfect example for the gift-giving spirit and the contentedness that we should try to exemplify during the holiday season. So often, we are fixated upon what we would like to receive on Christmas morning, but we have never heard Santa ask for anything of his own. You also have to give the guy credit for living in the North Pole; the weather up there probably makes last week’s blizzard seem relatively pleasant. (There’s also evidence that the North Pole is melting, which doesn’t bode well for jolly old Saint Nick, but we could probably discuss that in another opinion piece.) The idea of Santa Claus is not something that should merely live in children’s hearts; the spirit of Santa Claus should be within in each and every one of us. Even with all the evidence for Santa’s existence and the need we have for such a generous spirit, there are still killjoys that insist on ruining the beauty of believing in Santa Claus. This holiday season, when people scoff at the idea of a fat man in a red suit coming down a chimney to deliver gifts, stand strong and remember that Santa Claus isn’t just a silly notion for children to believe. Don’t let the Kimberlys of the world get you down.