The day Santa saved Christmas

After my last post Why Santa Won’t Be Visiting For Christmas I felt utterly overwhelmed with the amount of understanding and warmth and advice being afforded to me via comments, email, direct messages and text.
Totally and utterly overwhelmed.
Friends, readers, strangers even, reaching out and offering their love.
I read every single comment made – the good and the bad. For yes there were bad: “That child needs love not discipline” or “if a 6 year old is THAT naughty then the parents need to be punished“.
She is not naughty, she is wilful. Single minded. Bloody minded. Infuriating!
And yes she’s ‘only’ 6 but like no other 6 year old I’ve met.
Yes, it’s easy to cast throw-away comments like that when you’re outside looking in.
Also it’s easy to cast comments like that when you haven’t actually read the post properly.

But, I can hand on my heart say I bend over backwards to be the best parent I can possibly be for both of my children.
And I am prepared to do difficult things if it’s in their best interest. I get that not everyone agrees with that, but, well, tough.
I don’t believe in short term gain. I’m in this for the long haul, and I want both of them to grow up to be considerate, well rounded young adults who know how to interact in the often difficult world around them.

So, back to my dilemma.
As suggested by many people, both Dan and Mia had a video message from Santa.
Mia sat there in darkness, bathed in the flickering light of the computer screen, and watched rapt as Santa revealed how proud he was of her achievements this year and how he will be making his way to our part of the world, despite the bad weather in the North Pole.
He told her how he’d like her to try very hard to be nice to people and her friends and that he knew exactly what she wanted to be waiting under the tree on Christmas morning for her.
And then he said it was time to ask the elves to reveal whether Mia was on the Nice list or not.

Dear internet, that little six year old sat there in total silence with her fingers crossed.
And as the lights flashed and party poppers banged on the screen in celebration that she was indeed on the Nice list, she reached out and held my hand and smiled.
And something unsaid passed between us.

I truly believe we have turned a corner.
Every now and again she holds my hand and squeezes. Like no words are necessary.
We’ve sat and written our letters to Santa to leave out with his mince pie and the reindeer’s carrot and there is a warm glow in our house that I really thought would elude us this year.
And I have all of you to thank for that.
For your suggestions, your support and your warmth.
For that I thank you all and wish you a very merry Christmas and a happy, healthy New Year.
x

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