I was a precocious child.
Once, during Brownie camp, we were all given nicknames by the leaders.
While there was some question over other monikers, mine was unanimous: I was to be dubbed "What If".
For my curiosity moved beyond simple bombardment of adults with whys. I wasn't content to merely know why, but I wanted to know how it applied to the real world, how it interacted with other factors. Hence my fascination with hypothetical situations leading me to be deemed "What If".
However, my musings were not solely in the hypothetical realm.
When I was around 6 or 7, I remember approaching my father.
"Daddy, if Santa and his elves make all the toys we get themselves, why does this toy I got in my stocking have a trademark from another company on it?"
My dad managed to keep his cool under pressure, and pretended to speak to be on an honest level.
"Princess, the truth is that Santa and his elves actually can't make all the gifts for every kid in the world themselves. The secret is that Santa actually is friends with some of the other toymakers around the world, who help him out when things get busy."
I have to look back on that one with kudos to my dad. He prolonged my belief a little longer, with a little help from some conveniently placed snowy footprints by the fireplace.
However, my observational skills got the better of me soon afterwards, as I woke up one Easter morning and read the Easter Bunny's annual message, instructing us about the secret gifts scattered throughout the house, scrawled on a piece of paper on the kitchen table.
Reading it, I suddenly became painfully aware of a fact that had remained at the back of my mind, yet never quite rose to the surface until that very moment-- the Easter Bunny's writing was the exact same as my mother's.
It all came flooding into my head at once.
Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, even the Tooth Fairy-- they were all a myth.
I burst into tears at the kitchen table in my pajamas in front of my confused little sister.
My father quickly rushed me upstairs to the bedroom, where I sobbed that I had figured it all out. He comforted me, then explained it all, answering all my questions on the topic without boundaries.
After my gasps for air had stopped, and I started to giggle about the absurdity of this complex story I was now a part of, we colluded to keep my sister's belief intact. We came up with everything from an excuse for my tears to answers to some of her likely questions.
And I defended her belief with every iota of creativity I could muster. Even when my friends were bent on exposing the truth, I would staunchly explain to them how Santa Claus was the only plausible explanation of their filled stockings in front of her, and then chide them behind their back for their malice.
Thankfully, despite that tear-filled Easter morning, my sister didn't notice the similarity between St Nick's milk stained notes and my mother's shopping list for at least a few more years.
Extra big thank you to everyone in bloggie land, for all your kind words and concern. I'm sorry I have been more M.I.A. on your comment sections than I would like-- I am stealthily writing this under the eyes of a nosy co-worker as we speak, so I will have to wait for a little more spare time and privacy to visit.
I did want to mention that my sis is no longer going on her ill-advised trip, as is now mentioned at the bottom of the last post. It is apparently a financial decision, but few details are known right now. Good news, although not the perfect way of coming about it :).
Other good news... I hope you don't mind me tooting my own horn, but I am 20-something bloggers blogger of the week! It is actually a tremendous honour considering how many talented writers frequent that site.
It is also a great site for findings other similar minded writers, so I would encourage you all to drop by!
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
I was a precocious child.