My eBay bid from yesterday was a silly success: Santa will be delivering a set of Disney Princess Barbies to my kids on Christmas morning, as requested in their letter to him.
I only hope I won’t regret this when they’re playing “Sister vs. Sister Deathmatch” over the Snow White doll in a few weeks.
I’ve written before that I still believe in Santa, even though I know perfectly well that I buy and wrap the gifts under the tree. One proof: I would never buy Barbie Princess dolls for my daughters. I’m not exactly a fan of princesses.
Someone mentioned yesterday that we all have our moments of weakness, but it wasn’t weakness that led me to push the button on that eBay listing. I was simply obeying a higher power: Santa Claus.
Santa’s job, ultimately, is not to make me happy. His gift list isn’t shaped by letters pouring in from moms around the world describing the delights they wish for their children. Santa grants the wishes of children themselves.
The whole point of Santa Claus is that he gives children what they want.
I plan to give each of my girls a handmade weighted blanket for the holidays, new winter coats and boots, a family photo yearbook and books of feminist fairy tales. Those are the things I want them to have from their mom, to grow on and with in the coming year.
But when I’m wearing my Santa hat, my job is to be uncharacteristically indulgent of their wishes. That doesn’t mean violating my basic values: when I shop on Mr. Claus’ behalf, I still don’t buy overpriced, new items. But it does mean opening up to gifts I’d never consider giving from me.
I’m sure the handmade blankets and books will be family treasures long after Barbie has given way to Boys in the girls’ affections. In the meantime, they have Santa Claus to treat them like princesses.