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Find the Magic In Our Lives Through Simple Living
I remember as a young child going to church with my parents. The first time I vividly remember I must have been five or six years old and we went to Sunday Mass at St. Patrick Church. We always went to 6:30 a.m. Mass because, as I recall, it was the quickest Mass and my dad liked it because he could get an early start on chores afterwards. Not a real ringing endorsement by any means but it clearly defines my dad’s viewpoints on church-going.
St. Patrick Church was/is located in Tacoma, Washington, and it is a large, stone, gothic building with a towering steeple and inside everywhere you look there is stained glass, candles and marble. As I walked down the aisle that first time I could clearly hear my footsteps echoing and I was struck with awe at just how beautiful it was; I also remember thinking that it was magical, that something very important lived there, that I should be quiet and respectful.
As I got older and moved away those feelings of hushed reverence came to me again, this time when I began hiking the Cascade Mountains and in particular Mount Rainier. There was magic in the woods and on the trails and I took every opportunity to hike those trails and climb the mountain and breathe in the magic that they afforded me.
CAN YOU FEEL THE MAGIC?
Older still and my hikes in the mountains are fewer, and of course my hiking was curtailed by my drinking, but eventually the fog lifted, I found sobriety and with that discovery came a new realization of the magic that is all about us every day of our lives. Do you see it? Are you aware of it? It is so easy to get wrapped up in the daily rituals of living. We get up, we eat, we go to work, we come home, relax and go to bed. Each day the same, the ritual rarely changes, while all about us there is magic and mystery waiting to be discovered and appreciated.
WHERE THE MAGIC IS
I like to go to the park. I like to pull out a blanket and lay on the grass and watch….just watch. Mothers are there playing with their children. Dogs are there chasing butterflies. Lovers are there walking hand-in-hand in a ritual as old as mankind. It is all there but do we really notice?
As a child I would lay down underneath a big willow tree that was in our yard. I would watch the wind blow the branches back and forth and I would feel that same wind blow through my hair, a warm, gentle caress from Mother Nature. I would shift my gaze and watch the clouds drift by and try to discern pictures from the shapes of the clouds.
I would turn over and watch the ants crawling with purpose through the blades and wonder at their dogged determination, and I would pick one up and put my face as close to it as possible and study its features. I never got bored as a child; there was always something to explore, some new mystery to unravel, new horizons to seek out and discover.
A MAGICAL DECISION WAS MADE
I realized a few years back that I didn’t like the lifestyle I had adopted. I was spending way too much time working and trying to make more money so that I could spend more and owe more and…and…and…when would it end? I had worked over forty-five years and for what? Was I a better person because I had worked so long? Was there some award that I would be receiving for allowing my life to pass by unnoticed? What did I have to look forward to if that was all there was to life?
It was time for a change and all that was stopping me was my unwillingness to let go of a silly lifestyle that was not affording me happiness.
I quit my job, went on semi-retirement and began my writing career, and now here I am, once again able to enjoy the magic that is around me.
THE MAGIC NEVER LEFT
It was always here but I had become so busy that I had forgotten how to notice it.
Back to the park I went and began to once again see all that was around me. I went to the river and put my feet in the water and felt the force of nature pushing against me. I noticed that if I push my foot against the flow it is difficult to move my foot, but if I relaxed my muscles the flow took my foot effortlessly. Is there a lesson in that? I think so!
Have you ever looked at a leaf of grass with a dew drop on it, when the light hits it just perfectly and colors are shimmering in that drop? Have you ever watched a spider spin its web, the incredibly meticulous attention to detail that goes into that construction?
Have you watched a mother deer and its babies, how they communicate with each other through a language we will never understand? Have you watched a dog watch you, the perfect example of loyalty, always following your every move, hoping for praise and always willing to please?
THE MAGIC OF ANTICIPATION
Have you ever waited for that first sprout to rise from the ground in the springtime? That first tulip or daffodil, the anticipation of seeing the first burst of color after a long winter? Have you ever watched as a storm approaches, the change in the atmosphere, the darkening of the sky, and been both exhilarated and frightened at the same time? Have you ever held your breath as your child prepares to take that first step or attempts to ride a bike the first time? Have you again held your breath as you rush through the airport to see your lover after she/he has been away for weeks, your heart hammering and your eyes suddenly misty as love once again reminds you that you are not in charge of your emotions?
LIFE IS MAGIC!
As I write this I look out the window of my studio and welcome the interruption because what is happening before me is magic. Kids are coming home from school to the welcoming love of their parents. Nature is doing its thing as it always has, a spectacular display for my senses to accept if I am willing. I can hear a hawk in the distance and dogs barking and the wind is flowing through the evergreens and I am once again in St. Patrick Church, that little kid filled with awe, hoping to see or hear or feel the mysteries that await my discovery.
THE MAGIC OF OUR SENSES
We have been given five senses with which to experience life. Do we use them or are we aware of them? I met the most wonderful woman four years ago and she taught me a new appreciation for my senses. Now when I see a flower I not only see the vibrant colors but I stop to touch it, feel its texture and appreciate its gentle nuances. I bend over to smell it, lost in the wonderful fragrance that is unique to it alone. I may even pick it and taste it (if nobody is watching) and my only regret is that I have yet to learn how to listen to that flower for I know it must be speaking to me in a language I do not understand.
The magic of life is waiting for us; it has always been there for us to appreciate. Allow the child in you to escape for just a moment this evening and embrace all that is life. You might just get hooked!
“All aboard the Magical Mystery Tour; step right this way!”
P.S….this is day 22 of the 30 Hubs in 30 Days Challenge for me. There have been days when I felt I was just rambling on without an intelligent thread in the whole hub. There have been other days when the words flowed like that river mentioned in this hub. I look forward to finishing the Challenge so I can give each hub the measure of concentration and effort that I feel it deserves. I thank you all for following along and I hope I haven’t bored you too much.