Dear Santa…

Dear Santa,

I have to say it is hard to believe it has been a whole year since I last wrote to you. I hope you are doing well and you are healthy and that you got your vaccine! Our year has been one that has taken us to really happy places and through some very hard moments but you already know that, after all you are Santa.

I know you have read my and many many letters when I was younger. Sometimes, I wish I were able to simply put down my list of toys like I used to, when I was little. But the things I am asking for are things you really cannot put in a box. I believe that Christmas is a magical time, with thoughts of magic in mind, I hope the things I am asking for could be possible.
When I think about what I want for this year, I think my heart wants peace. The kind of peace that comes from within and helps with handling all the things that come my way. Parents of special needs children can never really control what we will be facing each day, so this kind of peace is priceless. We have all faced days when we feel anything but peace. Please leave that for us Santa, I know you understand.

Something else that comes to mind, Santa, is how much I wish I could be in many places at the same time. I wish I knew how to always successfully be there for my special needs child, for all the members of my family, at the school and with Elizabeth at therapies at the same time. I want everyone to know how I wish I could be with them but I am just unable at the moment. I am not sure how you can handle this one, Santa, but it one wish that lays on my heart most days. I know that asking that is too much, but maybe you could help to remember to be present in the moment I am in, to focus on the now and leave thoughts of those other places for another time. Parents of special needs children can find themselves thinking and juggling so many schedules and thoughts that being in one place both mentally and physically is a gift. I know you will know just what I mean, Santa.

When I think of this year, I can see the milestones that Elizabeth has achieved, the successes we have played a part in. I ask Santa, for all of us that we have a strong memory for these good things. That some how we will all remember these good, happy moments. How quickly, we can find ourselves focusing on what went wrong or what we need to do, instead of calling up a good thought or success. I ask for all of us who have those special children, the memory of the good to shine just a bit brighter and stronger than the negatives. I know I asked this last year but I think this will always be on my list, if I am being truthful.

I ask for all of us parents to have the gift of words to speak for our child, when they cannot. To use these words to help others understand them. To use these words to teach others about them. This is hard for us, sometimes, Santa. I know this gift would be so helpful to us all. I ask Santa, that those working with our children be given the gift of empathy, and belief in our children. We know they can learn and succeed and we know how they learn. I ask that those working with our children have this presents…each and everyday…our children need them to!
I know there are two other things that most parents would put on their list and I am no different but they are patience and perspective. How many times am I in a stressful situation with Elizabeth in each day? In one with my two typical children? In one in “just life” How I ask for patience, Santa, patience to see it is just a moment in time. A fleeting situation. But I ask Santa, for all of us parents of special children to have the clarity of thought to “live in the moment” to hug, love, cherish and be thankful for those we love so much, while they are here with us to love, to hug or to look into their faces. So much of life is busy and sometimes that busyness obscures our view of just what is important right now.

I hope you like the cookies we left for you, Elizabeth helped to make them, She is continually learning and growing. We have all grown with her on this journey. We have all learned a lot and I know that because of Elizabeth, her siblings have two of the most understanding and loving hearts. What a gift of Elizabeth that is!

Thank you, Santa for the magic of Christmas that you bring.

Michele Gianetti,

Author of:
I Believe in You: A Mother and Daughter’s Special Journey
Elizabeth Believes in Herself: The Special Journey Continues
Emily’s Sister

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