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My mom told me a story about the Christmas my brother began to doubt the existence of Santa Claus. Mom doesn't recall at what age his skepticism set in, but she does remember 'threatening' my brother with some unspecified punishment if he said anything about his doubts to me, his little sister. My brother is a good egg, and he never said a word to me about his feeling that Santa was a creature of dubious origin. I believe it is in part due to my brother that I still believe in Santa Claus.
Don't worry, I haven't lost my rational mind (not entirely). There is honestly a teeny weeny part of me who still wishes for the whole landing on the roof and coming down the chimney thing, but only once, just to see it. After that I would worry about the chimney flue, and making sure it was open, and that there was no fire in the fireplace. Eventually it would just be too stressful. I'd have to give Santa a front door key and the alarm code.
Nah! Overall a bad idea.
Instead, I believe in manifestations of Santa Claus. There is a kindness and a selflessness in old St. Nick which finds its way into people, not only at Christmas, but throughout the year. Over the years I have come across many people who have manifested Santa Claus in my life. I am very grateful for each and every one.
Here are a few of those who are:
Definitely manifesting Santa.
When I was 11 years old, while on my way to the library downtown, I was hit by a car. A homeless man and a woman who was passing by with her daughter lifted me off of the road and waited with me until the ambulance showed up. I was badly injured, bleeding heavily from my mouth, and in shock. According to the woman, when the man noticed I was shivering he took off his coat, put it over me, and turned my head to the side so that I wouldn’t choke on the blood. When they loaded me into the ambulance, I still had the coat over me, but by then it was covered with blood.
Afterward, my parents put an announcement in the newspaper because they wanted to meet the man who had so generously helped me, to thank him and to replace his coat, but they were unable to find any trace of him. Every year around Christmas time I think about this man who had very little himself, but acted out of such kindness and selflessness to help me. In my mind he was definitely manifesting Santa Claus.
Although every day acts of kindness are not so dramatic as this instance, I find the following also to be
Definitely Manifesting Santa:
Family members and friends the world over who make my day, and my week, when they tell me they like something I've written in this blog. (BTW this is not a hint.)
The people who follow this blog, and those who comment, make my day, and my week by making me feel as though my blog matters.
Fellow family history/genealogy bloggers who put themselves out there and share their research and their stories, their successes and their frustrations. They are a giant well of inspiration that will never run dry.
A certain leader of the GeneaBloggers community, Thomas, who inspires us, helps us, teaches us, and puts our posts on blog rolls so that more people can see them.
Definitely manifesting Santa.
The 'Christmas people' who collect toys, clothing, and food for the local food bank and city wide charities.
The Archivists at Cathal Brugha Military Archives who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to help me with my research.
The elderly man at Glasnevin Cemetery who stopped to help me find my grandfather's unmarked grave, just because.
The Santa at the Eaton Centre who made my day when he smiled and waved as I passed by.
The stranger who smiled and held the door for me, just to be nice.
The guy on the highway who might have been happy to just fly past me, but instead slowed down to let me merge into the lane.
They are out there everywhere, just waiting to do something kind, most of the time without even giving it a second thought.
Definitely Manifesting Santa.
I am very fortunate because my most special manifestation of Santa Claus, my husband Matthew, wakes up beside me every day, loves me, encourages me, challenges me and supports me in my work. Each and every day I thank my lucky stars to have him in my life.
Who manifests Santa Claus in your life?
Graphic courtesy of The Graphics Fairy.