I believed in fairy tales. I just loved to find the most exciting story I could get my hands on and do nothing but read it for days. Who wouldn’t want to escape from reality, just for a while, to go live in a completely different world, invisible to everyone else; a world where anything and everything could happen, and where impossibilities could become reality? But this world never lasts.
When I was younger, I believed everything I heard, just like any other little kid. My mom used to tell me that if believed in something strongly enough, it would come true. I took that statement to mean that I could make fantasy a reality by simply believing it were real, even though that wasn’t exactly what she meant. I was very disappointed when, after believing for so long, a letter from Hogwarts didn’t come for me on my eleventh birthday.
After that, the magic of fantasy began to fade as I realized that nothing as exciting as Harry Potter, or any other fantasy book for that matter, would ever happen to me. At the time, I felt ripped off; felt as if the creation of fantasy books was all a cruel joke made to taut the people gullible enough to actually believe in them.
When I was young, I always wanted something more in life. The general layout of life seemed so boring and somewhat pointless (be born – go to grade school – go to college – work – have a family – work some more – die). Who in their right mind would take this monotonous way of living over something more daring, more adventurous?
It took the death of someone very close to me to make me realize that this way of life isn’t as bad as I thought.
My grandfather was always very supportive of me, never telling me that my beliefs were wrong or unimportant. He knew that I wanted so badly to be a part of a fantasy, to escape into one of the books that I always had my nose in. But one day, he told me something I would never forget.
My family and I were in his hospital room, waiting. I didn’t know why we were waiting at the time. My parents told me that we should be there for him while he was “recovering” from his heart surgery, but I know now that they wanted to be there for him when he passed away. Before my parents made me leave the room, my grandfather said to me “Don’t let what’s right in front of you get away. Make your own fairytale.”
His words, and his death, made me realize that the life I am lucky enough to have is limited. Why waste time hoping for the impossible when you can enjoy something just as great that has been there all along? I used to believe in fairy tales, but now I believe in the life I am fortunate enough to have.
But I still read fantasy books, just for fun.
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