Are You Really Reading this on Christmas?

Are you really reading this on Christmas?

The better question might be: Am I really writing this on Christmas? Me, a nice Jewish girl? LOL!

But I guess it’s time to come out of the holiday closet.

I’ve been so relieved to learn that I am not the only Jewish person who grew up celebrating a (nonreligious) Christmas. It started with my grandmother who grew up in the little town of Maysville, Kentucky. Hers was the only Jewish family there. She felt seriously left out at Christmas. Not just the gifts the morning of, but all the preparations, excitement and sharing that went with it.

. . . Bummer.

She made up her mind that she would not do that to her children, and so, as soon as she married and had children, the family tradition began. I grew up celebrating/observing all of the Jewish holy days and holidays, including Hanukah, which usually  lands in the month of December, but we also brought a (real) tree and the pungent smell of pine into the living room and made homemade decorations for it that began with glue and glitter on paper and proceeded to hollowed-out egg shells. (Mom made the shells; we decorated with glue and glitter). She also made origami figures (which we decorated with glue and glitter.) My favorite were the delicate pink and blue and yellow swans.

In the days before Christmas, I would squeeze behind the tree into my own private fairyland world of blinking red, green, and blue lights nestled in the tinsel-draped branches to make up complex stories involving the figures and ornaments. We also left cookies and a Coca-Cola for “Santa Claus,” but that was a facade for my younger siblings.

 I, alas, had learned the truth too early. . . .

When I was 6 or 7 years old, an older friend ridiculed my explanation about the tooth fairy leaving me a quarter in exchange for my tooth. I marched home with the friend in tow and told my mother that I was not believed and would she please inform my smarty friend here of the TRUTH?

Caught, my mother confessed the Tooth Fairy was not real. In shock, I desperatedly demanded, “But what about Santa Claus? He’s real, isn’t he?”

That was the first time my world crumbled. (Sadly, it would not be the last or the worst. But those are not tales for Christmas Day.) And it did not stop me from squeezing behind the blinking, shimmering tree and creating my own worlds . . . and eventually writing them down.

Whatever Christmas means to you, I wish you MM (Much Merry) and dreams come true!

T.K. is a retired police captain who writes Books, which, like this blog, go wherever her interest and imagination take her.

About T.K. Thorne

T.K. is a retired police captain who writes books, which, like this blog, roam wherever her interest and imagination take her.
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8 Responses to Are You Really Reading this on Christmas?

  1. Well done!

    Sent from my iPhone

  2. T.K. Thorne says:

    Thank you, Laura. Happy Holidays!

  3. Prince Chambliss says:

    Merry Christmas!

    Peace,

    Prince

  4. otebear201 says:

    Your grandmother had such wisdom and kindness and could feel the heart of a child.
    My Jewishh parents, though not terribly religious, wouldn’t think of celebrating Christmas. But I had some consolation. My best friend, Marty, was Christian. I got to have Christmas with her family. They even had a box of Christmas balls with my name on it. Not the same as having the tree in my home but I do have very sweet memory of the Christmas times in Marty’s home. And she got to light a menorah in ours.

  5. hbienville says:

    In 1940 I was 10 years old. The first boy had been born after four girls. Boys were valued more than girls. We were poor. We had been taught that Santa Claus was not real so expecting gifts was unknown. Lucky were we to get an orange and nuts. Brazil nuts were called “nigger toes” but an image of black toes never entered my mind. To get a Mound candy bar was something very special. My dad followed Bernard McFadden and a guy named Atlas. Your new book is still on preorder status. So looking forward to reading.

  6. T.K. Thorne says:

    Thank you, Prince and a very Merry Christmas to you as well!

  7. T.K. Thorne says:

    Now that is the best of sharing! 🙂

  8. T.K. Thorne says:

    Thank you for sharing your memories. Everything is, indeed, relative. You dreamed of candy bars and I dreamed of a horse. Had I been thinking about children who had to dream of candy bars, perhaps I would not have been so devastated…. Thanks for ordering my book and I hope you enjoy it!

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