Last year I shared with you all Kensington’s first encounter with Santa Claus. Not every child enjoys their time with Santa. Some kids are plain scared of the fat man with a red suit. I was envisioning her sitting on old St. Nicks lap, with tears streaming down her face and mouth open wide with blood-curdling screams escaping her tiny, and yet very powerful, vocal box. You know the pictures I’m talking about. There are hundreds of websites and books dedicated to these disastrous family photos. I was hoping we’d experience this family tradition first-hand. To me, that cemented fatherhood. Unfortunately for me, our little angel was just that – a little angel. I asked Santa’s little elf to pinch her to make her cry and he looked at me like I was crazy. “No, seriously. Pinch her. It’s for my Christmas Card. There’s an extra $20 in it for if she goes from happy baby to wailing baby. But noooooooooooo. Santa’s little midget with pointy ears that looked like a Spock wannabe wouldn’t buy in to my scheme. Because of his unwillingness to grant MY holiday wish, we got a gorgeous princess, smiling away, on Santa’s lap.
And then this year happened. We arrived at Santa’s village just as he was about to take his cookie & Milk break. I tried to rush her in, but it was a no-go. The velvet rope went up and we were halted in the line. We had to wait for 30 minutes. Keeping a little munchkin occupied in line wasn’t the easiest thing to do. She wanted her hair bows out and I threaten her with never seeing another episode of The Backyardigans again if she even thought about touching her hair. Then after I made that statement, I started to wish she would test her luck. No such luck.
Santa arrived and Kensington was, once again, excited to see him… until she sat on his lap. Tears started streaming down her face. The photographer was trying to get her to stop crying by shaking some lame stuffed animal in front of her face (like that would make me smile). “Take the picture, Take the picture.” She just looked at us. “Take the PICTURE,” I grunted. She did so, and I quickly snatched up my tearful chickpea.
It had taken a year to wait for this moment, but my wish finally came true. Not every child enjoys their time with Santa, and that’s okay. She’s just following the tips she learned from the “Stranger Danger” videos we’ve been showing her.