San Diego Momma

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  • Author: Debbie Anderson
  • From: Poway-ish
  • Blogging since: 2001

Post Title: Moonglows and Fairy Drops

Post Date: September 10, 2008

“The universe is full of magical things, patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.”

— Eden Phillpotts

“Mommy, is Peter Pan real?”

Toots asks me a question like that every day. And used to be, I floundered with my answer. Of course, I want to tell her “yes,” unequivocally, indubitably, resoundingly yes. Yes! God yes! Please. We need more of your kind. Believers in the fantastic, the magic, the it-can-happen.

But would that be fair? And why not?

As a kid, I believed in magic with all my heart. I really and truly thought that if you wanted something wonderful to happen it would. As a Catholic, I prayed to God, asked for signs, and had faith he’d answer. Quite often he did. Sometimes, he did not. And that’s the truth you negotiate as an adult. Hopefully, you come to learn as I did that there is a reason and a road for everything and everyone. It doesn’t make the unanswered prayers any easier, but there you have it.

That’s magic. The possibilities are endless. You never know, right? We understand such a small part of this universe, leaving large dimensions unexplored, unseen, unknown. We touch such a small part of what is “real,” who’s to say something is out of our reach?

For me, magic is the possibility. I love “magic times,” when you’re never sure that something is as it seems. Twilight and its blue-glow, fairy willowisps, rainy nights and the silences between booming thunder, midnight drives and the road stretched tantalizingly before you. You know. Those moments when the pendulum can swing either way, nudging us off the ordinary path and into a world beset with stars and Peter Pans.

I still chase after magic. Foolishly, wisely, I run after it, and out of breath, catch it by the tail.

So when Toots asks me about Peter Pan or Cinderella or the Magic Bus or a flying carpet, I end up telling her, “Anything’s possible.”

Because it is.

Post Title: Into the Great White Open; Under Them Skies of Blue

Post Date: October 31, 2008

The other day, my daughter came running into the living room clutching a key she’d found in her closet. “A golden key, mommy! A golden key!” She waved it in front of me. “It opens something! I’m going to solve the mystery!” And out she dashed again to root through her closet searching for what? A diamond lockbox? A rotting coffin? Pandora’s Box? Occasionally she’d pop out again and give me updates. “I haven’t solved the mystery yet.” Or, “Do you think there’s a map?”

When the mystery was ultimately solved — the key opened a fusebox behind her winter coat — her disappointment broke my heart. She’d wanted a real life mystery, a locked attic filled with forgotten treasures, a witch’s potion cabinet, something magical and enchanted, but she got a box of wires and switches. I promptly promised her a mystery to solve, complete with another shiny key and a map this time, and I hope my imagination proves a match for hers.

It used to. Like when I’d convinced myself that our neighbors had too much trash…garbage that surely held human remains or the detritus of a counterfeiting ring…garbage that drew me to their home again and again to investigate in the dead of night. The thrill of sneaking into my neighbor’s yard for surveillance, rolling my getaway bike along with me for a quick dash should I be discovered, will never be as powerful as it was when I was 8 years old. I still love my mysteries and my dreamt-up scenarios, but by now I’ve seen too many boxes of wires and switches. Still, as I approach 40, I find myself looking for the locked attic.

And I want the same for Toots. I caught her this morning, staring down at her new sparkly shoes…. When she came to, I asked her what she’d been thinking. “I was just admiring my shoes,” she said. “I wondered where they will take me.”

“Maybe somewhere mysterious,” I said, knowing how the word “mysterious” would please her.

The veil began to fall over her eyes. “Really, like where?” Her voice sounded like it came from the bottom of a rabbit hole.

I couldn’t think of a thing fast enough. But no matter. She was already gone, and so I scrambled to follow.

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