The First Gift of Christmas
Start writing a post

Seeing Isn't Always Believing

My Polar Express Story

88
Seeing Isn't Always Believing
Instagram

As long as I can remember, slumping into the couch and indulging in a good Christmas movie has always been one of my favorite parts of the holiday season. Whether it was with my friends or family, there was just something about the comfort of the Christmas spirit left lingering in the room. The list of favorites goes on and on, and the amount of times you can watch does not exist.

However just as we see in the Christmas movies themselves, as age increases, Christmas spirit can decrease. The dreaded age of saying goodbye to believing comes around before you know it. Looking back as a college student, my heart aches for the time of innocence where myself and everyone around me seemed to believe.

Being a middle child, I was the second to last to know, and the second to last to not know. My brother is only two years older than me so when he stopped believing, I was not too far behind. However, I obviously I had no idea.

The Polar Express has always been a family favorite of mine. The beautiful story of having the ability to hear Santa's sleigh bells, but only if you believe, swallowed up our hearts each and every watch. Each Christmas Eve, I dreamed of the Polar Express pulling up to my own driveway, ready to take me away to the North Pole. I would even pick out my best Christmas PJs in hopes that Santa himself would see them. All I wanted was the first gift of Christmas, a sleigh bell of my own. However, one Christmas was different.

As we were opening presents, my brother had one extra than all of us addressed from Santa. As he opened it up, it appeared to be something small yet valuable in a white and red striped case. My little sister and I wiggled in our seats to see what he was so lucky to get–and strangely enough we were not. As he opened the box, a bell just like the one from The Polar Express appeared. My sister and I gasped. He had gotten THE sleigh bell. Jealous, we whined and wished that we too received the bell. I immediately made my brother ring the bell and danced for joy when I heard the extraordinary ring. I asked my mom if she too could hear the bell. I remember my brother and mum exchanging a solemn look which confused me because I was so excited for him. Little did I know, my mother was starting a tradition.

Two years went by, and I soon opened up the same bell. Now my little sister was the only one feeling left out.

"WHEN DO I GET ONE?"

The same solemn look was exchanged by myself and my mum. In that moment, I realized the tradition. When one stops believing, they receive the bell. Just to withhold whatever spirit could possibly be left. I can remember my sister asking when she would get one. She asked if "fifth grade was the year." Sadly, I responded "maybe."

It all hit me at once. Only two years ago, I was so innocent. I thought Santa had just forgotten about me. I thought that my brother was the lucky winner. In reality, I was the real winner. I still believed.

Five years later, my sister finally received the bell. Being the baby of the family, no one wanted her to stop believing because then, there was the fear that the true Christmas spirit in the household was gone. It was unsaid, but so well known. Upon opening her final gift, we all sat and explained the tradition to her. The room was quiet. I could tell my mum was holding back a tear.

Despite the age, there can always be Christmas spirit. My mum chose a way to preserve our Christmas spirit forever. To think what she must have felt in her heart purchasing bell after bell is so sad yet so touching. This Christmas season, I remember the innocence and the happiness I once had and attempt to preserve. I am forever grateful for the tradition my mum brought upon us. But lets make sure we always continue to spread the cheer and joy every Christmas deserves. Just because the belief isn't there, doesn't mean the spirit has to disappear as well. After all, seeing isn't believing.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Robert Bye on Unsplash

I live by New York City and I am so excited for all of the summer adventures.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

The invention of photography

The history of photography is the recount of inventions, scientific discoveries and technical improvements that allowed human beings to capture an image on a photosensitive surface for the first time, using light and certain chemical elements that react with it.

131949

The history of photography is the recount of inventions, scientific discoveries and technical improvements that allowed human beings to capture an image on a photosensitive surface for the first time, using light and certain chemical elements that react with it.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Exposing Kids To Nature Is The Best Way To Get Their Creative Juices Flowing

Constantly introducing young children to the magical works of nature will further increase the willingness to engage in playful activities as well as broaden their interactions with their peers

1604031

Whenever you are feeling low and anxious, just simply GO OUTSIDE and embrace nature! According to a new research study published in Frontiers in Psychology, being connected to nature and physically touching animals and flowers enable children to be happier and altruistic in nature. Not only does nature exert a bountiful force on adults, but it also serves as a therapeutic antidote to children, especially during their developmental years.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Simple Ways To Give Yourself Grace, Especially When Life Gets Hard

Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we are becoming.

1002496
Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

If there's one thing I'm absolutely terrible at, it's giving myself grace. I'm easily my own worst critic in almost everything that I do. I'm a raging perfectionist, and I have unrealistic expectations for myself at times. I can remember simple errors I made years ago, and I still hold on to them. The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is giving myself grace. I've realized that when I don't give myself grace, I miss out on being human. Even more so, I've realized that in order to give grace to others, I need to learn how to give grace to myself, too. So often, we let perfection dominate our lives without even realizing it. I've decided to change that in my own life, and I hope you'll consider doing that, too. Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we're becoming. As you read through these five affirmations and ways to give yourself grace, I hope you'll take them in. Read them. Write them down. Think about them. Most of all, I hope you'll use them to encourage yourself and realize that you are never alone and you always have the power to change your story.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

Breaking Down The Beginning, Middle, And End of Netflix's Newest 'To All The Boys' Movie

Noah Centineo and Lana Condor are back with the third and final installment of the "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" series

916866
Netflix

Were all teenagers and twenty-somethings bingeing the latest "To All The Boys: Always and Forever" last night with all of their friends on their basement TV? Nope? Just me? Oh, how I doubt that.

I have been excited for this movie ever since I saw the NYC skyline in the trailer that was released earlier this year. I'm a sucker for any movie or TV show that takes place in the Big Apple.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

4 Ways To Own Your Story, Because Every Bit Of It Is Worth Celebrating

I hope that you don't let your current chapter stop you from pursuing the rest of your story.

597827
Photo by Manny Moreno on Unsplash

Every single one of us has a story.

I don't say that to be cliché. I don't say that to give you a false sense of encouragement. I say that to be honest. I say that to be real.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

How Young Feminists Can Understand And Subvert The Internalized Male Gaze

Women's self-commodification, applied through oppression and permission, is an elusive yet sexist characteristic of a laissez-faire society, where women solely exist to be consumed. (P.S. justice for Megan Fox)

382766
Paramount Pictures

Within various theories of social science and visual media, academics present the male gaze as a nebulous idea during their headache-inducing meta-discussions. However, the internalized male gaze is a reality, which is present to most people who identify as women. As we mature, we experience realizations of the perpetual male gaze.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

It's Important To Remind Yourself To Be Open-Minded And Embrace All Life Has To Offer

Why should you be open-minded when it is so easy to be close-minded?

498126

Open-mindedness. It is something we all need a reminder of some days. Whether it's in regards to politics, religion, everyday life, or rarities in life, it is crucial to be open-minded. I want to encourage everyone to look at something with an unbiased and unfazed point of view. I oftentimes struggle with this myself.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments