20 Dec
  • By Dorothy Gibbons

“Of course, I believe in Santa Claus”

“Of course, I believe in Santa Claus.”

I said this out loud during the middle of a rehearsal of our Holiday Program “Elf” and immediately looked up to see the newest member of the leadership team look at me as if I’d grown another head. I remember thinking: “Oh NO! Maybe I shouldn’t say things like that!” But I forget.

After all, most ‘older’ Rose folks know that I believe in a lot of things beyond the physical; wooey wooey things like mercury retrogrades and not so wooey wooey things like miracles. So, of course, I have to believe in Santa.

How could I not? 

Santa: someone who showers gifts upon everyone—no matter the color of their skin, no matter how much money is in their bank account or even if they have a bank account, no matter what language they speak. That’s the Santa I believe in.

The Santa I know cares about people who they will never know or meet but still gives us money to help them. Every time I sign a thank you letter to a donor, I know there is a Santa. And if ever I had a doubt, I remember the day our Million Dollar + Donor walked into my office, a “Santa” who insisted her gift remain anonymous and whose gift will touch thousands of women in the coming years.

Many of the Santa’s I know are disguised as Rose employees and physicians. Some are interacting with our patients directly; others are working behind the scenes but like Santa who is gone in a flash, they seldom need (or take) credit for what they do. Some ease another woman’s fears by working her in the schedule, some speed up the diagnostic process when they see a problem on the screening mammogram, some navigate her into treatment. Some raise the money, some collect the money, some pay the bills and make payroll happen.

Every time I hear about an employee going the extra mile for a patient; I know there is a Santa. Every time another group from our community holds a fundraiser for The Rose, I know Santa exists.

Ok, I admit Santa may not be this guy in a red suit who lives at the North Pole, (I say may because who knows?) but Santa and his elves are very much alive and well at The Rose.

All the elves that are part of The Rose workshop make more than toys. Employees, donors, volunteers, physicians – they may look like regular people but I have seen the miracles they create and the gifts they leave. Each in their own way makes life possible for hundreds of women every year and show the world that someone still cares.

No matter how this time of year is celebrated, a Spirit of Giving is the common thread; that unseen force that reminds us that we human beings share more than space on this planet. Next time when you wonder if Santa is real, look around.

I promise you won’t have to look very far.

Dorothy Gibbons
CEO and Co-Founder of The Rose

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