I am really glad we are past the holidays, not sure about the new year but I will figure it out. The holidays are supposed to be a magical time, especially when you have young kids, but it is such a pain in the ass. This is why Thanksgiving is my holiday of choice; I don’t have to worry about gifts or decorating and if I run low on time I can always buy what I was supposed to make at the local grocer. What gets me most about Christmas is that I work my ass off and then some imaginary figure gets to take all the credit. I would say that it’s not right, but then I remember all my years working in the corporate world where someone else took the credit and I guess that’s just how it goes.
This year my youngest had been asking for a hamster from Santa ever since hers died last June. For days and months all I heard was, “All I want Santa to bring me is a new hamster”. I told her that it was a possibility, especially since that was ALL she wanted. I was soon corrected, “No, I still want toys, games, candy, clothes, a pony, a hedge fund” and whatever else she could throw in there. The hamster is doable, it is inexpensive and most likely won’t live that long. The problem is that Santa is perceived as this marvelous man for dropping a hamster down the chimney but I have to do all the work. Not only am I changing the water and feeding it daily, which includes washing and cutting up produce which I barely do for the kids, but I also have to clean it’s smelly ass cage twice a week. In addition, I am now sharing my office with two hamsters because neither of the kids want the hamsters in their room with them because they are too loud at night. Well, no shit, they are nocturnal and we had that conversation when we bought the first one. So now I sit here “working” and have one way conversations with two hamsters which is sort of like a bad sit-com, ‘Two Hamsters and a Mad Lady’.
My 8 year old has decided to use the ‘school rumor’ about Santa being fake as leverage. “Mom, I have been hearing that Santa is not real and if he was then I would get an iPad for Christmas.” My response? “Well, believe what you want, but Santa has been watching all year and he has seen you hit your sister, roll your eyes when you think I am not looking and continue to leave your dirty clothes in places they don’t belong. Santa takes all that into consideration and will still get you some gifts, but an iPad is off the table for this year. But cheer up, now you have something to work for all year in hopes you might get one next Christmas.”
I have always found it strange that we teach our kids that lying is wrong, but yet it is fine when it comes to reinforcing their belief in make believe characters that will net them some goods. This year I had to double lie because the only hamster that fit the description that my 6 year old gave me was a male and she wanted a female. Here is how that conversation goes in (and out) of my head, “Santa (mom/dad) brought you a girl (boy) hamster that will probably live forever (about 6 months).
I have to say though, I am ready to take at least some of the credit for Santa, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy. I’m the one that stays awake to stick money under a pillow, hide eggs and baskets and run around the house placing gifts, stuffing stockings and eating the cookies that were left for a person that most obviously could really have used a Slimfast bar. And guess what? Those three are seen as wonderful in my children’s eyes while I am still accused of being the “Worst Mom Ever” on a daily basis for things as benign as buying the wrong size tater tots or forgetting to wash the shirt they were planning on wearing that day.
That’s life and that’s what drives us and gives me a reason to Bliss. Happy New Year, make 2012 your bitch!