“I want a dragon for Christmas.” The child stood before her mother, arms crossed in front of her.
“There are no such things as dragons, baby.” Her mother sighed and continued washing the dishes. How do you handle a child with such a vivid imagination?
“Yes there are and I want one! I’m writing to Santa right now to ask for one.” She started reaching for her pencil and notebook, last year’s Christmas present. “Mom, how do you spell dragon?”
“Sound it out. D…r…a…g…o..n”
The little girl sat with the pencil in her mouth, a thoughtful pose. The she began to write:
I have deeN A good gurl this yer ples bring me a dragen for krismas.
Thank you love MorgaN
“O-N, baby. It’s awwnnn not eeenn” She corrected her daughter’s spelling and then reminded her, “I think you should add a couple more things on the list. I don’t think Santa can get a dragon.” Boy, was she going to be disappointed Christmas morning.
The child finished her letter and folded it into an envelope. “Here, Mom. Can you send this for me please?” Her mother took the letter, added a stamp and put it with the other mail.
The next morning Mom dropped the letter to Santa into the box with the other bills and took her daughter to school. As they drove, young Morgan began talking of Christmas and how excited she was. “I can’t wait! It’s going to be so cool having my own dragon. I’m going to name it… hmmm… what should I name it mom? I wonder if it’s going to be a boy or a girl.”
She kept on until they arrived at school. Again, Mom tried to convince the little girl, “Honey, you have to remember, dragons are not real. They are fantasy.”
“No, Mom, they are real. You’ll see. What was the name of the dragon in The Hobbit? I forgot.”
“Oh Yeah, Smaug. That’s what I’m going to name my dragon, Smaug.”
“Smaug was mean and tried to burn and crush the dwarves and Bilbo, remember? Are you sure you want a dragon named Smaug?”
“Yes, because my dragon will be nice. Santa wouldn’t bring me a bad dragon.” And off she went to school, leaving Mom sitting in Parent Drop-off shaking her head.
Mom and Dad had tried and tried to get Morgan to ask for something else. Now, with only a week to go, they were desperately searching for something to get her. They both knew that dragons didn’t exist and if that is all the child had asked for, then Santa had nothing to give her. She decided that something needed to be done.
“Call Work” She spoke into the car. The Hands Free device proceeded to dial her office.
“City IT” a voice answered.
“Hi Susan, it’s Kat. Hey, I’m not going to make it in this morning. Can you mark it for me?”
“Sure thing. Doing a little last minute shopping?”
“Yeah, something like that. Thanks!” She hung up and headed for the toy store.
It was Christmas, without a doubt. Eight-thirty in the morning and the store was packed. Mom walked into the Fantasy section of the store and found the toy dragon figures. She selected one of each kind and put them in the cart. She found a large red and orange dragon and grabbed it. Next she went to the books and found “Dragonology: The Complete Book of Dragons” and a few dragon coloring books. Finally, she went into the electronics section and picked “How To Train Your Dragon: The Game” for the Nintendo DS. If her daughter couldn’t get a real dragon for Christmas, she could at least get something.
Satisfied with her decision she headed to the checkout. In the car she called her husband and filled him in on her idea.
“You know she is still going to be disappointed.” He said.
“I know. But I had to do something! It’s Christmas and I don’t know what Santa is going to do for her. I’m going home now to wrap everything. We’ll just have to hope for the best.”
That afternoon she surprised her daughter by picking her up from school. They went for ice cream and when they got home they worked on her homework together. After dinner they tried one more time to convince the little girl that dragons didn’t exist. “Morgan, please send Santa another letter asking for something else? You know dragons are just fantasy. They aren’t real.”
“Yes, they are. I know they are. Just wait. On Christmas you’ll see.”
The week flew by and, before they knew it Christmas had arrived. As usual, they went to Mom’s family on Christmas Eve, ate too much, and came home. Before going to sleep Mom tried one more time to prepare her daughter for the disappointment she would face in the morning.
“Baby, I don’t want you to be upset in the morning, OK. I know you were hoping for a dragon, but they just don’t exist. Maybe Santa will give you something else instead. But I don’t think it will be a dragon.”
“Mom!” then she sighed. “You’ll see.”
Sadly, Mom and Dad went to bed. They prepared for the worst, a sad little girl on Christmas.
“Mom.” She heard a whisper in her ear. “Mom, wake up. You have to see this.” Mom opened her eyes and saw the smiling face of her little girl.
“What is it, Baby?” She asked as she stretched and sat up.
“Shhh, you have to be quiet. Come on.” Mom saw Dad standing behind the child with a look of disbelief.
“What?” She began to grow concerned and jumped out of bed. They followed Morgan down the hall, Dad still hadn’t said anything.
Morgan stopped and said, “OK, now look. But be quiet or you’ll wake it up.”
Confused Mom peeked around the corner and there, curled up under the Christmas tree fast asleep, was a real baby dragon. It was about the size of a small puppy and as it snored wisps of smoke came from it’s nostrils. Mom stood and stared in wonder.
Dad handed her a note. “This was in the tree addressed to us.” She took the note and read:
Dear Mom & Dad,
I have given Morgan a baby Dragon, just like she asked. Do not worry. It will not get any bigger than Nina, your Queensland Heeler. Also, it does not make fire and never will. It is a special breed. She may even be one of a kind. I found her wandering outside my work shop shortly after getting Morgan’s letter. I do not believe it was coincidence. She is quiet and loving. Please take very good care of her. There are so few wonders left in this world.
I have left instructions on how to care for her under the tree. I trust you will all do your best to make sure she is well cared for. Merry Christmas!
P.S. Let this be a lesson to you… Never underestimate the strength of a child’s faith. Sometimes, that faith is enough to turn fantasy into reality. We all have the power to create… what we lack is faith in the impossible. My gift to you this Christmas is advice: Take time to think like a child and you will open yourself to worlds you’ve never dreamed of… Good luck!
Mom put the note down and watched as the sleeping dragon stretched and opened its eyes. Morgan reached down and began to pet its head. With smiling eyes the little girl said, “This is the best Christmas ever!”