What do you want to be when you grow up?
“A magician!” was always my answer.
As a little girl, mystery and fantasy consistently fascinated me. I received a magic kit for Christmas one year, and life was never the same. I wore that black plastic top hat with so much pride and got right to work on planning and conducting my very own magic shows- all to the very supportive and patient audience of my mom and dad, of course.
While I did not exactly become a magician by trade, I think I settled into a career that is as close as you can get: a teacher.
Young children especially delight in the everyday magic around them so effortlessly. Everything is new and exciting for them. They do not yet know the rules and laws of nature, so a plane flying overhead or an icicle melting is truly fascinating.
I had the opportunity to witness so many “Hallmark moments” as a teacher. I’ll never forget one of my favorites, with a little girl named Reanna. She had a blazing personality, that was equally difficult and fascinating. There was nothing soft-spoken about this girl, so as she was beginning to sound out a word, I could hear her from across the room:
“bbb- errr- DDD”
“bb – err- d”
“b- er- d”
(screaming) “BIRD” “BIRD” “BIRD”
(on her feet, jumping now) “BIRD!” BIRD!” BIRD!”
(meanwhile I’m sobbing from across the room)
Magic is everywhere- and it is in our unique experience and perspective that make it so. I could have easily gone over and helped Reanna read the word she momentarily struggled with, but how dare I steal her discovery. Decoding a word letter by letter, understanding the meaning of a word that someone else has written, having an induced emotion upon reading the word- IT’S ALL MAGIC!
It is so easy to take it all for granted- that everything from reading, speaking, laughing, blinking, sneezing, crying, dreaming, birthing, dying, the mathematical perfection of a seashell, the intricate design of a flower, backlit dust particles dancing to a silent symphony- it is all so miraculously insanely magical if you really sit down and ponder it.
Despite these magical moments that children especially are so skilled at sharing with us- as adults, we still have bills to pay, toilets to scrub, and deadlines to make. We can’t quite live in the magic land of childhood forever, but we can choose to visit it more often! It might just lift your spirits and bring back a little of the child within you.
Next time you find yourself amid chaos, frustration, and fear, attempt to take a step back and look for the magic. Simply delight in the things around you, notice the details, and savor the wonder.
“Our goal should be to live life in radical amazement. To get up in the morning and look at the world in a way that takes nothing for granted. Everything is phenomenal; everything is incredible, never treat life casually.” – Abraham Joshua Henschel