I'm 32 years old and I still believe in you.
Each year I struggle with the idea of selling Santa to my kids, I wonder if they'll be angry when they find out I've imagined your existence. And each year I'm reminded, in subtle ways, why I do it.
Sure, there's the bonus of tricking my kids into good behavior - after all Santa is always watching. But that's not it, not really.
Right now there are a lot of 'ughs' and 'ohs' and 'too soon's go 'round. Christmas carols already? Aisles filled with ornaments and wrappings and ribbons when we haven't even cut the turkey yet? Ugh, oh, too soon!
But, Santa, you embody all that is good and right in the human being. You are kind and gentle, happy and generous, hard working and persistent. You don't let little things get you down, in fact they prop you up (go elves go!). You're overweight, but who cares? You don't see color, race, religion, or any of those artificial barriers we throw up to divide us.
The news is full of bad things. I won't pretend I'm not affected by the inhumanity all around us. I could list a whole lot of terrible news items. Shallow news items. Death, war, destruction, cruelty, celebrity...But underneath all of that is the spark of human goodness that floats to the surface when Santa is around.
Of course you do remind me of someone else, the whole purpose of the Christmas season is not lost on you.
So, I'm going to let those carols play. I'm going to make my lists and check them twice to make sure all my wants are covered. I'm going to equip my kids with magical dreams (even though one of them is in on your secret now). I'm going to pass the goodness and warmth onward and upward as far as I can.
I'm 32, and I still believe in you.