Evie and the Grand Conspiracy
The jig is up everybody. Evie knows. I mean she knows. She’s now a part of the Grand Conspiracy, if you catch my drift. Ah, that wonderful, magical moment as a child where you find out that everything your parents ever told you is a lie.
Being that Evie is a rather bright girl, I always thought she’d catch on a little sooner. But Evie’s kind of funny like that. She seems to want to hold on to her childhood with both hands, and goes out of her way to stay naive about things (I endorse this attitude wholeheartedly!). So I think she’s maybe had an inkling for a long time, but intentionally didn’t think about it. I mean, this is Evie here: this wasn’t exactly beyond her reasoning skills.
Now, this is kind of a strange time of year for this sort of revelation to come about. However, you’ll recall that Evie recently participated in a summer rendition of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. I think it’s somewhat impossible to get a bunch of first grade-age kids together and have them contemplate Santa without *someone* spilling the beans. From what Evie said, it sounds like one of the student teachers even confirmed it for them. EVEN STILL she held on to the magic for a couple more weeks, just as long as she could.
She has also been losing teeth like it’s going out of style, and we could tell she was testing us. We’d say something like, “Well, if your tooth falls out while you are at Grandma’s, the Tooth Fairy might not be able to find you,” and she’d give us this piercing, calculating look (all the better, we thought, when that dollar we slipped Grandma shows up under her pillow!).
Finally she broke down and asked us, and I have to say, it broke my heart to tell her. She’s just such an imaginative girl, and *so sure* that magic and fairies and Santa are a real thing that can really happen. How badly I want her to stay that way forever! I was just worried that this news would break her, and it’d be all cigarettes, haunted eyes, and jaded ennui from here on out.
She took the whole thing pretty well. For days, you could just see her little mind churning on the subject, walking through the implications. As each new aspect struck her, she kept coming back to us and asking for further clarifications. (“So you wrap all the presents?”,”So you eat the cookies and milk?”,”What about the Easter bunny?”, “That’s why you want us to go to sleep!”) She seemed to have a burning need to let everybody know that she was in on the secret.
She especially felt the burning need to let her little brother know the secret. We tried to explain to her about the Grand Conspiracy, and how most everyone in the country helps keep this secret from little kids (which is actually really weird when you think about it). We told her that she’s part of the Grand Conspiracy now, and it’s her duty to make sure that Ollie believes. It was touch and go for a bit (there was a lot of exaggerated, “I’m going to try to stay up to see the Tooth Fairy tonight, amiright Oliver???”), but she seems to have settled into it a little bit now.
She also seemed to think that, having been so initiated, she would immediately get to participate. (“Do I get to stay up and put the presents under the tree?”, “So, should I just give you the tooth and you give me the money?”, “Do I get to hide the eggs this year?”,”Do I get to eat the cookie this year?”) To each question we would reply, “Nothing changes. Everything stays the same.” That only seemed to sink in until the next question.
At least she has a good four months to come to grips with everything. I have a feeling she’ll eventually break and spill the beans to Ollie — I doubt little brothers ever make it quite so long as older sisters — but for now she seems to be feeling quite grown up about the whole thing, and enjoying being in the “know”.