This I Believe

Sophia - Marlboro, New Jersey
Entered on May 31, 2005
Age Group: Under 18

When you’re my age, there are nearly a million adults waiting to talk to you about crossing the bridge into another stage of life. But whenever they do this, I can’t help but wonder–how did they miss the other bridge? After all, even if the blurry lines vary from child to child, it’s still very distinct–after crossing over this bridge, a child is formally initiated into the world of the “big kids”. Here, the less welcome side of maturity is seen; where leaving carrots for Santa’s reindeer and placing teeth under your pillow no longer matter, because there’s no such thing as magic.

But in every doubting heart, there is a small, itching, corner that wants to believe. How could magic not exist? When the blazing sunset perfectly blends into the blue of evening what else can it be called? What else can you call that terrifying moment when you don’t know whether your hands will live up to the notes in front of you and then suddenly hearing music? What is that moment when you are completely and totally in the book world, and you hear the characters talking to you, just for that second? Isn’t it magic? And what else can that dazed, drunken, after-feeling be called but bewitchment?

Magic is beauty of the best sort–that which comes from unexpected places. It’s watching leaves waft slowly on a rippling pond and seeing goslings while driving by a soccer field. It’s stepping away from a Monet and seeing what he saw, receiving kindness from a stranger, playing a Chopin polonaise. The thrill is like the brush of butterfly wings; long after the dainty creature is gone, the feeling still stays and you are not sure whether it happened or not. But despite yourself, in every meadow, you look for their splash of color, flitting in and out of the grass.

The real magic-users in our lives are the people who keep on seeing something beautiful in every day. And even then, they aren’t so much making miracles as trying to understand them, using ink and paper, paint and canvas to explain to others the exhilaration that they feel. Magic, like gypsy music, is something learned but not taught–and the best part is that it is something that anyone can achieve. But as with all things, there’s a catch–giving it on is the only way to completely reap its rewards. You’ll find that pointing out the small things will make the gift come back bigger than before; someone’s day is brighter, someone’s burden is a lighter, by showing them there are things that there are to look forward to in this terrifying world we live in today. How could anyone be malicious or hate when they see the magic in their lives? The world would be a better place with more witches and wizards around–and it all starts with you.

I am asking you to believe.