Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Santa...I need you to be real...

I was on my way back from the gym walking through an underground passage. It was just 2 days shy of Christmas and NYC was glowing. People walking with co-workers happily sharing stories of their plans on how to spend holidays with family was all I could see and hear until I spotted a man. He was sitting near the door of a pharmacy store. His son - I assumed - was on his lap. He had a board next to him "For the love of god, please help me". For a person who has commuted to NYC for over 10 years, this sight is not unusual.

I stopped for a second and looked at his son's face. He was wearing a jacket and a cap and his eyes were closed. The man was holding him with both hands and trying to not disturb his sleep. His eyes looked full of love for his son.

I went back to my office. Hundreds of advertisements of toys, clothes and food flashed around in front of my eyes. I walked back speedily as if I wanted to run away from these thoughts. necklaces, rings, balls, apple pie, Santa, elves, elf of the shelf, Mrs. Clause, temperature below freezing, family get together, parties, drinks, food, dance, drinking, smoking, kids, accidents, babies, smiles, tears all circled around me until I reached my desk. I frantically searched my wallet and found 15 dollars. I grabbed all the chocolates I had and ran back to the elevator. Never help a person who is begging for money, they say. You can help them once and then what will happen next? What will happen next, Sangeeta? I do not know. Do you? The elevator was on the lobby level and I had to get out. What if this guy goes somewhere else and I can't find him? I need to run because I need to talk to him. I need to talk to him and look into his eyes. I ran down the escalator to the concourse level. Is Santa real? Jay asked me. What do you think, Jay? I asked him. I don't know mommy..He said. What is real is this. What is real is people are dying, starving, shivering, crying and people are laughing, eating, drinking, driving when drunk. What is real is people like me who want to help are not helping somehow. I spotted him again. There was some money in the bag next to him now. some one dollar bills, some change. I reached close to him and sat down on the ground. My nose was all red and voice shivered as I said hi to him. Is this your son? I asked. Yes, he said. How old is he? I asked. Four, he said. I looked at his face and then I looked at his son's face and reached out my hand to shake hand with him. How is he feeling? I asked. He is fine. He said. I handed him over 15 dollars and chocolates. Thank you and may god bless you, he said. Please take care, I said. We both smiled at each other and I left.

Santa, this Christmas, I want you to be real and explain me what gift is. Santa, this Christmas, I want you to guide me in finding out how am I a gift to others in this world..Santa, this year, I want your help to find out how can I make a difference in someone else's life...Santa, I need you to be real..

1 comment:

  1. Nice post. Thanks for sharing your experience.
    May you get your wish granted this Christmas and find your real Santa!