Christmas has always been my favorite holiday. My entire life, my family and I have always gone to my uncle's house for Christmas Eve and the best part was, aside from spending time with my crazy family, was that Santa would always make a guest appearance. As a little kid, most of the excitement of Christmas comes from believing in Santa. My brother and I used to plan to stay up and play board games in my room all night until we heard Santa or until it was time to wake up and run downstairs. Of course, we'd fall asleep eventually, but we always made an effort to stay up every year. The Christmas spirit was always there. But, as you grow up, all of that stops and the excitement fades and that's all because you stop believing in Santa. Even though Santa is a fictional character and Christmas is still Christmas with or without him, I think believing in Santa just makes the holiday season what it is, especially as a little kid.
Year after year, I've always looked forward to our family's Christmas Eve tradition. In fact, I couldn't imagine Christmas Eve without it. Every year we go to my uncle's house. Our family and our friends are always there and we just hang out, eat dinner, and wait around until we hear jingle bells come through the door. Then, we all run downstairs and patiently wait for Santa to walk in screaming "ho ho ho." Even though most of my cousins and I have outgrown Santa, he still comes every year and I'm always grateful that my uncle still carries out our Christmas Eve tradition. In my recent years, I've upgraded my position as an excited little girl waiting for Santa to come, to Santa's elf on Christmas Eve. When Santa arrives on Christmas Eve, he sits in the biggest chair we have available to him and I sit beside him and help him hand out each of the gifts he brought for all the kids. So, I stay in the Christmas spirit because, even though I may be too old to believe in Santa, I embrace my inner child and make Santa's Christmas Eve appearance the jolliest it can be.
Although Christmas isn't celebrated for Santa, if you grow up in a household that utilized the idea of Santa, then it's likely Santa was a huge part of Christmas. A lot of people celebrate Christmas for different reasons, most do for religious celebration, but for little kids, Santa is the most exciting part of Christmas. Santa is glorified in Christmas music, Christmas stories, and Christmas movies/shows and all of that is geared towards children, or adults, like me, who still hold on to the fun idea of Santa. So, it's easy to say that Santa is a part of Christmas and Christmas is more fun when you do believe in Santa. Who doesn't love leaving cookies out for Santa, writing letters to Santa, and possibly being Santa's elf on Christmas Eve? It's too easy to enjoy Santa, so why should we stop when we grow up?
There's a lot of reasons why holidays aren't the same when you're older compared to when you're younger. But, I think that we lose our Christmas spirit because we give up all the fun things about the holidays. We replace baking cookies for Santa with something like Black Friday shopping. Santa is oftentimes looked at as the bad aspect of Christmas because people argue that Santa is not what Christmas is about, and that's fair. But, instead, we glorify things like Black Friday shopping, which can really bring out the worst in people. So, maybe instead of chasing deals, we should all embrace our inner child and enjoy the holiday season. After all, you're never too old to believe in Santa.