A few days ago I shared with you my dilemma with the elf.
Turns out, I could have saved myself some of that debate because the 5 year-old is just too smart.
Yes, she was excited when she first saw our elf, and yes, I saw her showing it a picture of her and Santa later on…
She went to bed that night, and I debated whether or not I should move the darn thing. (Remember, I was having second thoughts on the little thing.) I worried about how they’d react if it moved; would they think their other toys moved on their own, too? Yes, I drove myself nuts that first night.
And then I moved it, still second-guessing myself as I got into bed.
The next morning my daughter was happy. Why? Because the elf was gone.
And then the 3 year-old found him. (He was tickled that he found the elf when big sister thought it was gone.)
A bunch of questions followed. I really wasn’t sure how to answer. And then, when little brother was in the tub, she asked me directly…
“You moved it, didn’t you?”
“Tell me the truth,” she said, looking me in the eye.
“Yes, I did,” I told her.
I want to make sure my daughter knows I will always tell her the truth when she asks. I want her to know she can always come to me with her questions. I’m setting a precedent for the future, starting with an elf.
The smile on her face was priceless.
“Can I touch it?” she asked. And so, we went to the living room so she could examine the elf. And we talked a little more. I asked her if she was glad it didn’t move by itself, and she nodded enthusiastically.
Then I told her it was a game we got to play until Christmas, and that I was hoping when she and her brother saw the elf they would remember to be good.
Part of me wishes I had told them that to begin with, and part of me is glad she and I had this moment. Maybe the elf isn’t such a bad thing after all…