Right Your Name

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Inspirational Christmas stories

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Right Your Name on 

When Robert was born two friends gave me two tips for Christmas.
One friend told me to buy separate gift wrap, tags, and bows for presents from Santa.
Another friend told me to have someone else write on the tags from Santa.
I did not realize how important that handwriting tip was going to be until a few years later.

I remember I was busy in the kitchen a few days after Christmas when Robert, who was three and a half years old, approached me. He said something to me, but I could not hear him. "What?" I asked looking down at him. Looking up at me with a solemn face, he held up a crayon and a piece of paper. "Wight yor name," he said. I went to the table, sat down, and wrote my name. Robert quietly watched as I did this. After I had finished writing my name, he left the table, and went into his bedroom. When he returned he had in one hand a piece of paper with Dad's handwriting on it, and in the other hand he clutched a "Santa tag" he had kept from Christmas Day. He laid them down on the table, got up on a chair, arranged the 3 items, and studied them intensely.

"Nope, dey not da same," he said. He looked at me with a big, bright smile. "What are you talking about?" I asked him. "Dis kid towed me dat Santa Claus is my mommy and daddy. He towed me to check da wighting next yee-ah. I dew it now. " he said. He then jumped out of the chair, and threw the samples of mine and his Dad's handwriting into the garbage can. With his belief in Santa restored, he bounced through the kitchen waving the "Santa tag".

Five years has passed since that day. Robert is growing in leaps and bounds. He has been asking me a lot of interesting questions lately. Who is St. Nicholas? (He was a man who loved children.) Why do people call Santa Claus, St. Nicholas? (It's his nickname.) Reindeer can't really fly, can they? (I'm not an animal behaviorist. You need to write to Jack Hanna and ask him.) How does Rudolph's nose light up without hurting him? (You mean without electrocuting him? I have no idea, you need to call and ask an electrician.) etc..

I believe Robert and I have developed a mutual understanding during these question and answer sessions. He wants to know, but he hesitates when asking his questions, and I only give as much information as needed in answering his questions. I can see the doubt flicker across his face, but he doesn't question me to a great extent. He seems to be content for now. He isn't really ready for the truth, and I definitely am not ready to tell him. I feel that Santa is the only link left to that little boy who bounced through the kitchen after he realized the handwritings were "not da same". I know the day will come in the near future when he will no longer believe in Santa, and our last link to that little boy will be gone forever. Until that day arrives we will leave things as they are.

Someday when Robert has a little one of his own, I will remind him about buying separate gift wrap, tags, and bows for presents from Santa. I will also remind him to have someone else write on the tags from Santa.

Who knows, maybe someday, years from now, he will be standing in his own kitchen, and hear a soft, little voice say, "Right yor name."

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