This I Believe

Gary - Westfield, New Jersey
Entered on April 22, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: carpe diem

I Believe in the Magic of Everyday Life

I believe in the magic of everyday life. I have been a magician for most of my years. I have studied the magic and illusions of the world’s greatest magicians, from Houdini to David Copperfield. While I truly appreciate the magic of the magicians, for me, true wonder comes from the magic that I experience in everyday life. The magic of my daughter smiling and saying “daddy, I love you”, the wonder of watching my son playing lacrosse, and the miracle of hearing my wife’s heartbeat.

When I experienced the horror and terror of September 11 and the emotional wreckage in its wake, from the families ripped apart, to the loss of friends and the destruction in my city, it seemed to me that our collective magic was gone. After a long period of time, I realized that it wasn’t that the magic of life that surrounded me was gone, but that I stopped seeing it. I began to notice the sunsets again. I started sensing the wonder of the full moon sitting on the horizon, and I began appreciating the smiles of children playing. I started to appreciate the magic of daily existence again.

As a Risk Manager on Wall Street, recently a part of my job was to try to estimate the social stress, the economic impact and the loss of life resulting from an outbreak of an Avian Flu pandemic. The “Worst Case Scenarios” are potentially so disastrous they are difficult to comprehend. The scenarios affect everything I love, my family, my wife and my children. I have decided to deal with the emotional implications by the taking solace in experiencing the magic and wonder of the world around me.

I know that life is the greatest magic show we can experience, as long as we open ourselves up to the magic that surrounds us every day. Sometimes we just have to pause for a moment to appreciate the beauty and the wonder of the simplest things that we take for granted, every day, every minute and every second. In a world where the spectrum of human experience spans from war and death to beauty and love, I have to believe in the awe-inspiring magic of everyday life.