Wednesday, April 20, 2022

On finding the magic (Day 110, Year 2)

Today, we went to Mont St-Michel--an abbey in France that appears to be rising out of the sea. The site of it is nothing short of extraordinary; it is otherworldly and entices you to rub your eyes and pinch your arms to make sure you are not dreaming. 

At high tide the abbey is surrounded by water; at low tide it is surrounded by mud flats. Both the water and the mud flats, which happen to be pockmarked with quick sand, protect the Abbey from arrivals. The only way in is via a causeway built to manage all the pilgrims looking for the magic and blessings within the abbey walls. 

I thought that I would certainly find my own magic within that abbey. And while I found an extraordinary place, I also found others things--souvenir shops, overpriced food and at least half of France visiting. I am not trying to insult the Abbey in anyway, it is truly a sight to behold.  It is just sometimes the spots that appear magical, are simply ordinary places dressed up and the truly magical places are ordinary places just dressed in an ordinary way. 

And if you are wondering why I am talking about magic, it is because I am a magic seeker. My magic is not glitter and spells and fairy dust; my magic is finding the correct words and the story to tell. My magic is my inspiration and my muse. And often, my magic goes missing. 

When I try to find it, I often start to look in obvious places--digging through stories from my own dramatic past (special needs brother, premature infants, preeclampsia, childhood cancer, dead brother, organ donation). My dramatic past is the obvious place to find some wisdom or some story magic, right? I mean look at all the things that happened and all the stories I could tell. Sometimes, those extraordinary things are just ordinary, albeit ordinary for me. There isn't any new inspiration there.

But, then I start to look at day to day things, the things right in front of me and I find something magical--a story, a nugget, a piece of something that glimmers and glows and grows into a story to share. 


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