Thursday, December 12, 2013

Visiting Santa

Ethan, my oldest, had his first Christmas when he was five months old. Being a first-time mom, I was excited to take him to visit Santa with my good friend and her 13-month-old. 

Sure, my kid couldn't actually tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas, but who cares? It's a time-honored tradition. I'm being a good mom for bringing him to see Santa! We are going to cherish the photos of him sitting on Santa's lap for the rest of his life!

Oh, the bittersweet memories of new mom naivete.

We got to the mall and my joy faded as I looked over the price list. It was like 20+ bucks for one picture, which I was not prepared for. At the time, it was a stretch for me to pay $20 (plus my common sense kicked in), so my friend and I compromised and split the cost of a $16 c.d., thinking that we could print pictures ourselves from the c.d. 

As we waited in line, my excitement built. This was going to be so great! When it was our turn, we turned in our sad order and plopped our kids on Santa's lap.

I walked away and Ethan started shrieking his face off.

OOOOOOOOHHH. Here's something I hadn't factored in: I was basically setting my baby on some total stranger's lap, walking away, and expecting him to be totally cool with that!

No. 

Ethan was screaming but what my new-mom ears heard was WHAT IN GOD'S NAME ARE YOU DOING, MOM? WAIT YOU DON'T DESERVE TO BE CALLED "MOM." YOU ABANDON ME ON A SCARY SMELLY GUY'S LAP WHO'S CALLING FOR HOS AND ASKING ME WHAT I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS? WHAT THE HELL IS CHRISTMAS? I DON'T KNOW WHAT IT IS BUT I SURE AS SHIT KNOW WHAT I DON'T WANT: YOU, ABANDONING ME ON THIS GUY'S LAP!

I tried to soothe him from 15 feet away but he couldn't hear me over his cries or even see me over his screwed shut and tear-filled eyes. Since I was so shocked at his reaction and uncomfortable, all I could do was awkwardly laugh, which made me look like a total asshole. 

The final stab to the gut: The c.d. we bought was a sharing c.d., meaning all we could do was email the picture. It could not be downloaded, and we could not print pictures from it. I tried to save it to my computer using all kinds of trickery, but all that I was able to do is get a tiny, blurry image that you have to squint to see. WHAT a RIP-OFF.

Ethan is now seven. We've never been back to see Santa, nor have his younger brothers. I know. I'm totally robbing them of this delightful trauma experience, but I just don't have it in me to revisit it.

It seems to be common for the one and younger set to not quite take to Santa, as you'll see in the pictures that some readers have graciously shared.

It's okay to laugh. The kids all survived it.


Smile through the pain, Santa. 


Santa is about to get the "reflex check" on his right knee.


Same family, plus the cousin.


Twins share everything, including a fear of Santa.

I may not have loved you last year, Santa...

...But now, I do. I'll talk to my sister, inform her of your greatness.


Santa's eyes are so peaceful, but they did not have a calming effect on this baby.


Christ, this guy is WAY TOO HAPPY.


Come back tomorrow for Santa's letter to the kids!

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