Sunday, December 4, 2011

Christmas is confusing

We're waiting until later in the week to put up the decorations, but whilst dragging them out of the loft in readiness, we found this tiny tree which used to perch on top of the freezer (which lived in the lounge, great for easy ice-cream-access) in our first house together. In pulling it out of its bag (I was in the loft, Jacob was attempting to climb the ladder standing waiting patiently at the bottom of the ladder), I knocked a stocking through the loft hatch and onto his head. Jacob shouted "Jeeeeeeesus!". He's not one of these kids who repeats inappropriate things as soon as you say them, he stores them up for freaking months before trotting them out and then waiting angelically for the backlash.

"We don't say Jesus Jacob, that's not nice," (hmm, need to rephrase that really...).
"Yes it is nice", he says, nodding earnestly.
"No, we shouldn't shout that when we do something wrong. We should say 'Whoopsadaisy!'" I say, wanting to actually shoot myself for having got myself into this conversation and for the banality which is now coming out of my mouth.

Luckily, he got distracted by something shiny and trotted off elsewhere. It's a hell of a confusing time, Christmas: mixed messages about Jesus for a boy being brought up in an atheist household, with very-religious grandparents; confusion about who-the-hell-is-Santa-and-why-is-a-strange-man-coming-into-my-house-in-the-middle-of-the-night?; lotsnlotsnlots of shiny things sprouting out of the walls; and random old ladies suddenly asking you what you want for a present but then not giving you anything.

And today was nicely rounded off with trying to explain to Jacob about spaces between words. He was nicely tucked into bed, when he spotted the 'Merry Christmas' banner on his wall, and sat up again, saying "Pick me up Mummy, it's broken". I looked round in confusion, trying to figure out what he was talking about. "The letters Mummy, it's broken". I realised he was pointing to the space between Merry and Christmas, where yes, it looked like a letter had fallen off. I explained about words, and spaces, and sentences. I picked up a book, and showed him the spaces between all the words. I picked him up and held him up to the banner, showing him what sound each letter made, and how none were missing. He said "No Mummy, it's broken".

I agreed, and put him to bed.

1 comment:

CCB said...

Great post. So funny.

We too are atheists, but I couldn't bear to celebrate Christmas and try to explain it to our 2.5 year old. It is way too confusing. For me too. Great that you can get through it if you can. The Christians stole Christmas anyway! I am just way too tortured to get through it for us.