Blab Blab Blab
  • Can I help you?

  • Categories

  • Archives

Just pretend

I took Ethan to a model Matzah Factory yesterday.

The kids were led from room to room by “Moses,” who explained each step in the process of matzah-making. The first main room, however, was where the kids sat down on the floor and watched a little play about Moses and Pharoah and the plagues. It was hokey as all get-out but the kids loved it. One or two rooms later Ethan looks up at “Moses” and says, “You are not the real Moses, you know.” “Moses” was caught a little bit off-guard, and before he could respond, Ethan continued. “You are just a pretend Moses. But that’s okay.”

“Moses” nodded his head and told Ethan he was correct, bemusedly walking away to lead us on to the next room.


Ethan has a very strong sense of what is real and what isn’t. What is pretend and what isn’t. Out of the blue a month or so after Christmas, he stated, “You know, Mommy, Santa Claus is NOT real.” It was very matter of fact.

I stood at the sink, facing away from him, wondering how I could respond without outright lying to my son, which I loathe, but also avoiding the issue. I feel like we are entering the tricky stage where there are a lot of questions about religion and why we celebrate different holidays than Grandma and Grandpa, and why we don’t have a tree, and why Grandma and Grandpa don’t light a menorah, etc. So far we’ve been able to explain pretty well that Christmas is a holiday we celebrate at Grandma and Grandpa’s — it is a special thing he gets to do at their house. He’s been okay with that explanation so far, but the questions will surely keep coming.

Suffice it to say, I have my own internal conflicts about Santa. As a child I once sat on the lap of a department store Santa after begging my mother to let me, and when asked what I wanted for Christmas, replied with ‘I’m Jewish. I don’t celebrate Christmas!’ That poor Santa had no clue how to respond.

I knew I would have to be very careful with my response, so as to avoid the risk of disappointing my husband’s whole family.

“What makes you say that, buddy? Why do you think that?”

“Because, Mommy. He is JUST PRETEND.”

“Wellllllllll, um, then what about the presents you get from Santa on Christmas morning? Where do those come from?”

“Oh, Mommy. THAT’s different.”

Ahhhh… PRESENTS can be magic, but the man is just a myth. He is such his father’s son!

One Comment

  1. Pobba says:

    The man and the myth…

    Ahh, the childlike mind.