“Miss-Miss, look, this is my Christmas tree. So pretty naaa?”
I was still a college student myself when I taught this little princess. Cute, little girl she was the apple of everyone’s eye. A student of class 2, Shreysa loved to spend most of the time sitting on my lap and trying to memorize poems. Like a bird she twittered in her jovial voice. A look at her face and one could forget one’s daily stress.
It was Christmas eve and she had invited me to a lavish dinner at her place. The aroma of freshly baked cake tickled my nostrils, the moment I entered the house. Shreysa dragged me inside straight where the Christmas tree stood tall, adorned in all its grandeur.
“Miss-Miss, look this is my Christmas tree. So pretty naaa? You know? You know miss, I decorate the tree every year with mommy and daddy.”
I couldn’t help giggling at her gleeful chirping. ” Yes dear, it looks so pretty…”
She didn’t let me finish my words and pulled me to her bedroom. The Cinderella wallpaper made me feel I just entered a Disney story. Shreysa pointed at the big sock hanging down her bedpost. “Santa will come at midnight and put my gift inside it.”
We sat comfortably on her bed while she started talking about how she met Santa at the school Christmas party celebration before the onset of her vacation. Suddenly she turned all serious and said, “Don’t tell anyone, I will tell you a secret. Now that I have become a big girl, Santa won’t come.”
I was a little surprised. Did her parents tell her that Santa Clause wasn’t real? I was about to ask her when she said, “I saw Mommy and Daddy enter Little Shop. I know they bought a gift for me. They will put the gift in the sock tonight.”
“How do you know that’s gonna happen?”, I asked.
Prompt came her reply, “Santa does not give gifts to those who have many. Santa gives to those who have nothing new on Christmas. I saw a girl like me selling flowers on the street. That day we were returning home from the mall. When the car stopped at the signal, she came and knocked at the window. She wanted us to buy her flowers. No one bought her flowers, I felt sad for her. So I came back home and wrote Santa a letter. You had taught me letter writing before so I could write a nice letter. I told him to send my gift to the flower girl on the street. I wrote Santa that I have many gifts. Mommy, daddy, grandpa, granny and all my relatives give me gifts but she does not have any, she is very poor and sells flowers. I wrote, I promise I will study very hard from now, I will be a good girl so Santa please-please give her the gift.”
I had tears in my eyes. Such purity, innocence, so much of love can only be found in a child’s heart. Being a little girl, she gave the world a message that we adults often fail to deliver. While we give so many gifts to our near and dear ones every Christmas can’t we all give at least something to the needy? Come let us all take a small step towards humanity and bring smiles on the faces of the less fortunate.
May we all have a joyous and Merry Christmas.