Fear the Big Guy

3 Dec

This weekend we took A to go see Santa.  Overall I’d give the experience a big thumbs down.  We had our hopes pretty high because last year went so well.  She sat on Santa’s lap no problem, and we got a fantastic picture.  This year we decided to go downtown where Santa would be visiting with the kids in the historic Log House.  We had to wait in line for about 45 minutes, and because A had decided not to nap, she was not too cooperative.  When it was finally our turn we entered the Log House and she proceeded to grip my arm like Santa was the scariest thing she’d ever seen. (Ok he probably was)  The volunteers there assured us that we could put her on Santa’s lap anyway because he was wearing gloves with grippers on them so the kids can’t get away.  Ummm…what?!  I crouched down next to Santa with A, we took a quick picture, and out we went.  I couldn’t stop thinking about the volunteer telling me I should put my daughter on Santa’s lap anyway, even though she was terrified.

I know pictures with Santa are an important tradition.  I just can’t bring myself to force my child to sit on the lap of a perfect stranger if she doesn’t want to.  Later I started to question myself.  Am I never going to make A do anything she’s afraid of?  Will I make things too easy on her if I just let her walk away from anything that might be a little scary?  I often find myself second guessing my decisions as a parent which is good and bad.  I like analyzing what I do so I can be better in the future, but I also drive myself crazy sometimes worrying that I’m not doing what is best.  When I reflect on this situation I feel like I made the right choice.  There will definitely be times in A’s life where I will push her to work past her fears.  Maybe the first time she has to play the violin in front of a crowd of parents I’ll have to tell her “I know you’re scared but you can do it!”  Maybe the first time she has a spelling test at school I’ll have to say “You studied hard for this.  Its ok to be nervous; just do your best!”.  Those will be times where I’ll help her to use her “fear” to make her stronger.  Sitting on a strange bearded man’s lap just so Mom and Dad can have a picture for the fridge…not so much.

12.3.12 003Even Santa seems perturbed.

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7 Responses to “Fear the Big Guy”

  1. ecoincognito December 3, 2012 at 6:22 pm #

    I definitely think you made the right choice! In a few years she’ll be bounding up to him to eagerly share her wish list. Until then, she’s got a picture with her favorite person in the whole world and some guy in a red suit.

    • thebusybaby December 3, 2012 at 11:44 pm #

      Are you doing Santa with the girls this year? Hope it goes better for you!

  2. Andrea Curry December 3, 2012 at 7:35 pm #

    You made the right choice! She looks scared in the photo, yet relieved that you are holding her. And yes, Santa looks grumpy! It’s probably just the stage they are in. We didn’t even try to do a Santa picture because Caleb is TERRIFIED of anyone elderly looking. You should see him swat at all the older people at our church. It’s so embarressing

    • thebusybaby December 3, 2012 at 11:45 pm #

      Hahaha I wonder what goes through their minds sometimes. Maybe its that elderly people are always the ones who approach little kids and aren’t afraid to try to pick them up, talk to them, etc?

  3. Laura December 6, 2012 at 12:35 pm #

    Maybe she would have been a little more receptive to this ritual if Santa didn’t look so unhappy with his seasonal work. Hopefully this isn’t the same man who will be in the Bunny suit at Easter!!

  4. Becky December 7, 2012 at 7:01 pm #

    Haha that picture is hilarious! Maya would’ve been scared, too! I think you did the right thing. We tried and she was ok…but we’re going to try another Santa! 🙂

    • thebusybaby December 7, 2012 at 11:28 pm #

      I’m glad Maya wasn’t too scared! I feel like you never know what they will be scared of. Hopefully Maya likes the next Santa too!

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