I miss being a kid. I miss the magic of the possibility of my life stretching ahead of me. I miss being told by my parents that Santa and the Tooth Fairy are real and no matter what happens, I will always be protected from the world. More than anything though, I miss the innocence of believing everything I was told. It was just so much easier that way.
When I was young, I was able to believe anything and everything my parents told me. The tooth fairy wouldn’t come until I was fast asleep; in the morning I would have a quarter under my pillow. I believed in the tooth fairy more than I believed in Santa or the Easter Bunny, probably because I thought myself to be a light sleeper and would surely wake up if my parents were to take my tooth out from under the pillow and replace it with a coin. I slept like a log. But even after I began to doubt the existence of Santa or the Easter Bunny, I still believed in the Tooth Fairy.
I remember the day I lost all faith in those imaginary entities. My mother kept my allowance money in her lingerie chest. I knew this and went looking for it one day to buy some item that I just had to have. I rummaged around through each drawer, but I didn’t find my allowance money. I found every Christmas cookie and tooth from the past 10 years of my life. My mom and dad had kept everything. Yes, my innocence was shattered that day. No, the holidays were never the same again. But my parents had done what they were (in my mind now) supposed to do. They kept the magic intact until I was ready to find out on my own.
I honestly think it was beautiful that my parents were the first people to lie to me. It was having me learn the hard way that the world is dishonest, but, at the same time, it was from the people who loved me most.
Now that I am 25 and hopefully one day will start a family of my own, I have thought about how I would approach the fantasy world of my kids. I believe I will take a page from my parents’ book. Keep the innocence intact for as long as possible. Because the world truly is a horrible place if you can’t find the magic in it.