“I stopped believing in Santa Claus when I was six. Mother took me to see him in a department store and he asked for my autograph.”
- Shirley Temple
A child’s natural curiosity is eventually the undoing of Santa Claus. As a six year old, I still fondly remember opening my parents’ bedroom closet to see the many wrapped gifts waiting to be placed under the boughs of the fir tree. But, it was those “From Santa to Jimmy” gift tags that raised my skeptical eyebrows and mouth-opened disbelief that dismantled my fairy-tale innocence. This discovery was several weeks before Santa made his way down my chimney to enjoy the milk and cookies I dutifully placed on the fireplace hearth. Even with that jolting revelation that Santa Claus was actually a cheerful muse wrapped in red ‘n white fur, I don’t recall an emotional breakdown or sudden on-set of depression. This escape from despondency may have been averted because like most kids that stumble into pulling Santa’s curtain back, I was more preoccupied with how I would perpetuate my belief to my parents so the Santa presents keep coming on December 25th!
With the yuletide mood on the upswing in late November, the whole Noel season comes as a sentimental journey for me. While my focus is the Christ Child’s story and special holiday events featuring music and food with friends, the continuity of family Christmas has been lost through divorce three years ago. Healing takes time, as they say. But, as the optimist that embraces life’s moment, my heart finds the “Wonderful Time of the Year” is laden with people’s faith to connect with kindness and goodwill. To emboss in a framework of levity, the magic of Christmas re-captures my imagination somewhere between the Macy’s parade, NFL football and Thanksgiving’s pumpkin pie.
I have been writing to Santa’s North Pole the past few years. Well, in spirit at least. In a male’s uncharacteristically vulnerable state of mind, my Christmas wish was for new love. Affectionate roots and desire for feminine connection don’t fade as seasons of life change. Even in this time of loss and learning to let go, I fortified a faith of God’s love-identity in me. Through this laser-focused mirror of grace and gratitude, a light of generosity was released to serve others through my time, talents, and resources. A tapestry of spiritual connectivity was cultivated through intentions of a pure heart. In the course of these activities of service, new friendships formed, including talented, lovely, and strong-willed women. There was something uniquely different in these new feminine relationships. For quite a while, I was not sure what I was feeling or even what to do about the ambiguity. I surfed this wave of connection, dismissing the shore that was ahead.
In retrospect, the Universe knew exactly what it was doing. Recently a clarification gift arrived. In mystical fashion, Santa had delivered an early Christmas gift, with the name tag, “love without attachment, Jimmy.”
Dr. Wayne Dyer, an American self-help author and motivational speaker has taught, “If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” In the past when I would be attracted to a woman’s energy, my selfish ego would take charge, shaping the relationship as an attachment. The gift’s lesson has taught me to delight in all of God’s creation without attachment. To align relationships with God’s view is to gain spiritual insight, accented with charity and the longing to share your gifts.