There is very few things in this world as incredible as a child’s face bathed in wonder. I have seen some beautiful sights in my life but I have never seen anything as magical as watching my child this weekend.
We went on our annual trip to Walt Disney World. We go every year and while years past have shown me some beautiful sights, it wasn’t until my three-year old introduced me to the true magic at Disney World that I could appreciate all that the famous mouse man gave us. I knew Walt’s story, I knew who he was and what he was…in theory. I did not know who and what he truly was until this weekend.
My shy, introverted little girl was jumping up and down with pure joy on her face any time someone she recognized passed her. She threw all her heart and soul into trying to give to her heroines all of her; and for the first time in my life I knew what it meant to cry tears of joy. When she was determined to show Aurora her shoes, when she was determined to tell Mickey all about the coloring book that she bought, when she simply couldn’t contain any of her excitement because Goofy simply waved to her from afar, I realized that a single man gave that to her and I will forever be grateful.
It made me wonder when it was that I had gotten so serious, so cynical, that I could not find the same joy in life. What happened to me that I lost that feeling of joy at the simple presence of a smile?
How far back would I have to go to understand when I lost that innocence, that simple beauty? Was it when I first discovered that my parents were fallible and could lie to me for years about a figure so steeped in our culture that the holiday seems to start in September? Was it when I first realized that those that I could love with all my soul would die just like my first love? Was it when I was confronted with the daily reminder that people would never accept me if they knew of my disease, of my struggle, of my hell?
And despite the beauty I saw in my children’s eyes, I don’t know how to keep that gleam for even one more day. How do I protect her, and give her those princesses over and over? How do I give her dreams when for years my have been lost? How do I make her believe in magic when there is so little magic to be found?
I would give my life for my children, easily and completely. I do not have any issue in dying for my children, it would be easy. But I don’t know how to keep their dreams from dying. I don’t know how to recreate that absolute feeling of joy in the simplest of moments.
And how do I capture that joy in life? Through the mundane chores I must complete? Through exercising because I feel fat? Through eating healthy? Through dressing nicely or getting my hair cut?
And once I have that joy (let’s just assume) how do I believe in it? How do I keep myself from resorting to type and waiting for the eventual fall? How do I ever look at this world with any kind of beauty, after all the destruction it has shown me? How do I forgive this world enough to believe in it? Because at the end of day, the truth is I can’t forgive, I can never believe, because my reality is the darkness that permeates throughout us all.
So instead of just my daughter finding joy in simple moments, I will also depend on her. It may not be fair but then again, not only is this life not fair but it certainly carries little to no magic.