December 24, 2006
Like any other kid at Christmas
I took her to see Santa today.
She prepared for her audience with The Man all morning, practicing what she was going to say over and over. When it was finally her turn, she uncharacteristically hesitated for a moment, and then jumped up in his lap and told him her name, using the Big Box of Words, and what she wanted for Christmas. ("I want earrings and necklace and bracelet and ring." Apparently it's Schuyler's year for bling.) When it came time for the photo, she handed me her device impatiently. It was a scene that at a glance looked very much the same as any other kid visiting Santa.
I could tell it was different for him, though. The other kids were rushed through pretty quickly, but Santa took his time with Schuyler. He asked her questions, which she answered on the BBoW, and he spoke to her, softly so that only she could hear what he said. She listened intently and nodded solemnly every so often, seemingly very aware of the importance of her audience with Santa. Her eyes shone and she watched his face with reverence the whole time. It's often hard to know what exactly is going through her mind, but one thing was very clear today. Schuyler believes.
They took the photo and then Santa gave her a long hug, closing his eyes for just a moment. After Schuyler hopped down, I saw him push up his glasses and quickly wipe his eyes before turning and motioning for the next kid. As we walked away, I saw him turn and look at her, watching her thoughtfully.
Schuyler made Santa believe. I know how he must have felt.