Mom, little girl experiences magical moment with mall Santa - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Mom, little girl experiences magical moment with mall Santa

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)
PADUCAH, KY (KFVS) -

This time of year, it's easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle.

With the shopping, the parties, the decorations, and the trips to see Santa, it can get hectic.

"Our first thought was we hope he has a real beard," said Kelly Jackson.

With Kelly Jackson's children right on the edge of disbelief this year, she just hoped the Santa at Kentucky Oaks Mall in Paducah could work some Christmas magic. 

Right off the bat, the children notice this mall Santa's beard is real.

"They usually have to check, one little baby pulled a few hairs out," said Santa.

So far so good.

Kelly watched intently as children ahead of hers in line took their turn on Santa's lap.

"The girl in front of my kids had hearing devices, we noticed Santa told the girl he also had a hearing device," said Kelly Jackson.

Kelly's 8-year-old daughter, Lauren, was next.

What Kelly said happened in those moments with the jolly old elf impacted her little girl in a way no one could have predicted.

"She's a quiet child, a sweet girl...I could tell right off," said Santa.

Santa noticed something else when he lifted Lauren to put her on his knee.

"I said, 'You have scoliosis don't you?' She said, 'Yes,'" Santa explained.

Santa could relate.

"He leaned up and she felt his back and I knew right then," said Kelly Jackson.

"I said I wear a brace too," said Santa.

Santa could not only relate to the little girl with hearing devices, but this child as well.

"I was shocked that he had a back brace like me," said Lauren Jackson.

"I thought how horrible for a little girl to deal with this," said Santa.

Lauren said she will wear a brace until she's 17 years old.

"It makes me hurt, and it's hard for me to breathe," said Lauren.         

The conversation between Ol' Saint Nick and an 8-year-old child became less about wish lists and more about compassion and understanding.

"It makes me happy that someone I believed in my whole life has a back brace, it's cool and awesome that he has one just like me," said Lauren. "He said, 'It's hot and hard for me too, but we'll get through this together.'"

And Santa said he meant it.

They would encourage each other to make every day count.

Even the tough ones.

"Said a few more things including Merry Christmas and that was it, but all the sudden she broke down and so did I," said Santa. "I don't remember ever crying."

"I was in tears, Lauren was in tears," said Kelly Jackson. "It was just a special moment for us because Lauren does feel alone sometimes."

When the coolest guy on earth is just like you, that indeed is life changing.

"I love Santa so much he's awesome to me, and I think he's a miracle," said Lauren.

To Lauren's family, it was an answer to prayer.

"This was a God moment for us, God put us in the mall that day," said Kelly Jackson.

It was a moment they will never forget.

"It's not all about Santa, but he sure made our Christmas," said Kelly Jackson.

Keeping that twinkle in her children's eyes as they take in the true beauty of the season.

"To us, he's the real Santa," said Kelly Jackson.

Santa said he'll never forget how this little girl touched his heart.

"She's a wonderful little child and instantly grabs any ounce of compassion in you, we couldn't turn loose of each other," said Santa.

A Christmas wish already granted, the kind not found in stores.

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