This I Believe

Rachel - Chicago, Illinois
Entered on February 7, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

There once was a man who wore a red suit. He lived way up north with his wife and some reindeer. But once a year, he would leave his home to travel all around the world and eat a few too many cookies. However, this man’s journey was not to gain some extra weight. This man’s journey was not to see all the shining lights at Christmastime. This man’s journey was not to get his reindeer to exercise. This man’s journey was to keep the love and the giving spirit alive –in all of us. This man was Santa Claus.

Ever since I can remember, I have been ecstatic once December arrives. It is not because of the presents, and it is not because of my birthday either. It is because all of the lights are shining, the snow is falling, the tree is up, the families gather, and Santa Claus comes down that chimney conveniently next to the tree.

Christmas has always felt like magic to me. And a huge part of what makes this time of year so delightful is the legend that is Santa Claus. He is a jolly old man who brightens one of the three hundred and sixty five days of the year for people everywhere. For me, the importance of this jolly old man is not so much in the presents he brings, but in the message he carries –a message of joy, of love, of caring. This message is the spirit of Santa Claus, and it is what I believe.

So when the most wonderful time of the year comes around, I try to be a little bit like Santa. Sure, I buy presents for my family and for my friends, but mostly, I try to bring love and caring to everyone. Because the spirit of Santa Claus is not about giving the perfect gift or receiving it either. It is about showing others that you care –it is about love. I try to be thankful for what I have been given, and I try to give back to those I am thankful for, or even to those who are just simply not having the best day. And who knows? Maybe they would rather receive gifts. But I believe that spreading the love is a better gift than any I could ever buy. Sometimes spreading the love simply means talking to a friend, and sometimes it means embarrassing myself by singing a good ole Christmas carol. I am living by my belief of the Christmas spirit, the one for which Santa Claus is the so-called mascot.

I will never stop believing in the spirit of Santa, because it is important to live by not only during the Christmas season, but all year round. So I hang the ornaments, put up my stocking, and make some cookies for Santa to show my Christmas spirit –and hope it will brighten his day.