Yesterday Relia started asking questions about Santa. Her first one was most intelligent: how does he come down into the fireplace and not get burned? I told her he was very careful and had been doing this for a long time. This was something of an offhand explanation and it was out of my mouth before I realized that I had just committed us to the Santa myth.
The FP Gal and I really should have talked about it before now and gotten on the same page. Whoops! She seemed ok with this when I told her and I'm not sure if we would have been better off trying to defuse it anyway. The idea of Santa, the gift-bringer, is fairly prominent in the things she sees and the music that she hears. If she was the one kid at her preschool who knew the truth, then she'd just become a pain to other kids (and by extension) their parents.
Besides (I tell myself) this isn't a harmful myth. I figured it out long before my parents fessed up. I've talked with co-workers who said the same thing. I have no doubt that in a couple of years she'll be lying to Felix about Santa, just to protect him. That's how this all works out.
And there are benefits! She really wants to see the reindeer, that's the most interesting part for her. Well, we told her that they won't come here if she's asleep. But that doesn't mean she can't leave food out for them. Or that they can't leave some tracks in the backyard (snow permitting). How cute will that be?
She'll soon find out that the world is sometimes a cruel place. Let her keep some innocence for awhile.