Making Grown Men Cry and Enjoying It

What an odd thing to say, “Making grown men cry and enjoying it.” Not to say that the moms don’t cry but it isn’t any fun seeing moms crying. Perhaps Santa needs to explain, so here goes. The vast majority of the work I do traveling the world delivering toys to boys and girls is tiring but very enjoyable and very rewarding. I have been known to be a very jolly fellow and not known for crying or occasionally shedding a tear but…
First of all Santa has a little bit of human mixed in with his elf and mythological blood. I am jolly in nature but even I can be moved occasionally to tearing up and yes even crying. The Sheriff’s Santa Project is involved with many groups of people and we make many stops and deliveries. We drop off toys, gifts and Christmas Stockings to approximately 300 people each year. We get to deliver to WEAVE which is probably the most enjoyable of all the visits. The kids are all healthy and very energetic and Santa and his elves cannot stop smiling during and after the visit to the shelter.

Delivering to the hospital can be a little more challenging for Santa to hide his emotions and he has noticed that many of the fathers of child patients in the hospital tend to tear up at the site of their child interacting with Santa. They do not tear up or cry out of sadness, they tear up out of seeing their child, who only moments earlier appeared sad and lethargic become happy, energetic and excited at the mere site of Santa and his elves entering the room. I noticed that the more serious the condition of the child the more the tears flow from the parents, fathers in particular. Occasionally Santa needs to take a break while roaming from room to room to freshen up or to take a drink of water (drinking water helps because it not only stops the tears but it also refills the tear ducts for further leakage).

I will tell you the most powerful and impactful of all visits is the visit to the home. By the end of the visit most of the adults in the house are fighting back tears and yes it is usually the father that is the most emotional. At first contact with Santa the family gathers their emotions as they sing songs and Santa interacts with the children. Then when the visit is all said and done, the family hugs Santa and his entourage. This is when it becomes emotional for Santa as the parents hug a little tighter and hold on a little longer whispering, “ Thank you, we really needed this!”, in Santa’s ear. Santa smiles, gives a loud belly laugh and a “hohoho” as he is walking towards his sleigh. He does not dare look back as the family may get a glimpse of Santa tearing up or getting emotional. Into the sled Santa goes and Mrs. Claus quickly produces a towel or a box full of Klenex because she knows what is about to happen to Santa. She says quietly as they drive away, “It’s fun watching grown men cry”.

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