Sunday, January 5, 2014

Sneaky sneaky boy

Anthony and I realised just a couple of months ago that Tony's days as a 'Santa Believer ' are numbered now that he is eight. He was in a Year 2/3 class this past year, and being in a class with older children, we knew that come Christmas, the discussion of Santa would likely come up amongst his classmates. We sadly realised this Christmas could be the last before he 'knows'.

I feel that as soon as he asks outright, we should tell him from now on, but until that happens, my lips are sealed and I'm a happy woman. 

There hasn't been too many expressions of doubt from Tony and I thought we were in the clear as December approached. Tony's class even wrote and posted letters to Santa (for those who wanted to).  Tony asked me for a stamp to take to school so I knew he had written one. 

A couple of days later, I got a message from a friend who works at Tony's school and whose son is Tony's best friend.  She thankfully gets the inside scoop and gave me the heads up about some rather important information regarding Tony's letter to Santa. 

Tony had asked Santa to ring a bell when he comes on Christmaa Eve to let him know he was real.  His plan was to not tell his Mum and Dad, so that he could use this to test Santa's validity by whether or not there was a bell rung or not. 

Sneaky sneaky boy!!  

Thanks to the heads up we received, we were able to make a plan to keep the magic alive at least another year. 

Come Christmas morning, the boys awoke and we all gathered together to open our gifts.  Tony did not mention not hearing a bell at all. 

One of his last gifts was small and we eagerly watched him unwrap a red bell and a letter from Santa. The letter explained that Santa didn't want to wake him at night when he came, so instead he wanted to give him a bell to hang on his door to remind Tony of him. 

Tony was so thrilled and then told us that he and an older boy were debating the existance of Santa and when Tony said he believed in Santa, the boy asked him to prove it. Tony came up with this bell plan to put it all to the test and said he couldn't wait to tell his class mate what had happened. 

I know the time will come soon where the truth will be discovered, it's all part of growing up. But until then, I love that my children have such belief in human goodness. They accept that someone would make toys for children they have no relation to and spend every day of every year working to bring joy to others with no request for anything in return.  Acceptance of such a concept in the world we live in is magical in itself. 

I know our Santa days are numbered for Tony, but at least for now, there is a bell hanging on Tony's door :)

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Just a little bit precious

I am not a very good swimmer. I CAN swim. I am certainly capable of saving myself if I needed to, but I'm just not very good at swimming. I think this is in part due to my dislike of swimming. It's just such a hassle! All the getting changed, sunscreen and sand, chlorine and ear plugs, and trying to peel off wet clothes, then put on dry clothes inconspicuously whilst still a bit wet (it's like trying to get dressed after being covered in glue). 

I don't think I'm a particularly girly-girl, but when it comes to swimming, I get a bit precious. I MUST wash my hair after swimming. It doesn't matter where I am or who is around, I need to properly wash my hair after swimming. I'm not talking a good rinse with clean water; I'm talking shampoo, conditioner, and a comb. I'm not even embarrassed to admit that when we go to the beach, I stand at the outdoor shower (where people have a quick rinse or wash off their boards) and I wash my hair and leave with a big puddle of suds behind me. 

I just hate the feeling of sand or chlorine in my hair. Or on my skin for that matter. I also must bring moisturiser with me to apply immediately post-swim. 

See - precious. 

It seems somewhat cruel that it has been recommended much of my life to swim. For my back, to strengthen my core muscle, to build leg muscle, blah blah blah. And swim I have! But very reluctantly. In more recent days, my swimming advice has continued, but I am mainly restricted to walking in the water as there is less twisting motion. This pleases me greatly as there is less hair-wetting opportunity. I have still, however, not taken to the water as much as probably should. 

I'm not really big on New Years. I LOVE Christmas, but New Years doesn't mean all that much to me. Seeing so many Facebook friends comment on their reflections of 2013 did cause me to do a little reflecting of my own though. Like most years, there was joy, pain, growth, sadness, and fun. 

Some moments this past year remind me of treading water. Just kind of keeping my head above water, but not really going anywhere. Treading water is necessary sometimes. It can be a life-saver. Some moments of 2013, I absolutely needed to just stop and tread water so I could catch my breath and stop from going under. 

Other times I was just treading water because it was easier, or I lacked the motivation to really swim. 

I learnt a really valuable lesson early in 2013 that I have mentioned previously (sorry for all who have read it already).  I was in a sullen state post-surgery in February and feeling pretty sorry for myself. Mainly over having to go through surgeries more than I would like. I was just treading water I guess. But late one night in hospital, after a brief-but-tough physio session, I suddenly realised I had so much control over my situation and I could make the decision to endure the trial as best I could.  I was desperate to get through the recovery phase and needed to really swim and push myself in the direction I wanted to be.  

This lesson has been a standout moment of 2013 for me in my own personal growth.  I have learnt that when I find myself in a position that is undesirable to me, instead of just treading water and staying there, I can muster all my strength and swim with all my might to calmer waters. 

Of course there were times later in the year where I got lax in life and at times realised I was just doing Doggy-Paddle and likely just going round in circles instead of focusing on my goal.  This is what New Years brings I guess. A chance to re-focus on our goals. Yes, it can be done anytime really, but our attention is particularly drawn to our goals as January 1st draws near. 

My 'goal' this year, is to swim more and tread water less....and definitely not drown:)