Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

You Lose Some December 14, 2014

There is something about this holiday season I can’t put my finger (er, I mean paw) on. It bothered me on that day called Black Friday, when my forever mom and dad came home upset about the rude and pushy people they encountered. It bothered me every time since then they’ve ventured out to the stores and came back emotionally defeated. Silly People

It happened again today. Mom went on a solo trip to a few stores and instead of returning home joyful and full of the spirit of the season, she cried. That did seem admittedly a bit overkill from my doggie perspective, but I digress. The point is, it was not a good shopping excursion yet again. Partially because of the people, who have apparently gotten even more spiteful and hurried as time has gone on. But also because she came across a hurdle at every turn. There was something in the way of every single thing on her shopping list.

That store in the mall closed months ago. That product isn’t carried at this store anymore. They are sold out of that item at all locations of this department store. Defeat was the word she used when she returned home with literally nothing to show for her efforts.

Like I said, there is something about this holiday season I can’t quite put my paw on. But I do know the reason for the season, and I know mom does too. It’s not about the people at the stores or the shopping or the bags or the presents. It’s not about the chaos and the wrapping paper and the perfect gift. It’s about the magic. It’s about celebrating with family and friends. All that other stuff is ornamental.

Regardless of what is going on with the season this year, I know that for sure. I also know these days happen. Bad days are a reality of life. You win some, you lose some. But in my opinion, that’s okay because it makes the wins that much more meaningful.

 

 

Once In A Lullaby November 18, 2014

I’ve noticed it since the beginning. And I’m sure it’s probably nothing special or unique to babies. But since day one I’ve observed that my dear baby Carter has a profoundly noticeable appreciation for music. When he was really tiny, mom used to hum to him or rock him in his room with his favorite CD of soothing music. It has a way of calming him pretty well most of the time.

Ever since he started pulling his little self up on things to stand, he does this little jig when a song he likes or recognizes comes on the television or radio. And now that he’s started toddling around, I can’t wait to see what comes next.How you doin?

So I suppose I shouldn’t necessarily have been surprised when it happened this morning. Magic. From the ground up, it has a way of coming to life when the right song comes into the walls of our forever home. Today it happened in the spirited words of a familiar and beloved song.

“Someday I wish I upon a star, wake up where the clouds are far behind me…where trouble melts like lemon drops high above the chimney top that’s where you’ll find me,” sings Hawaiian musician Isreal Kamakawiwo’Ole in a way only he could. “Somewhere over the rainbow, bluebirds fly. And the dreams that you dare to…really do come true.”

My forever mom has always loved this song, and I know she’s heard it since dear Carter was born, but something happened today that could only be described as an unforgettable moment. The first few chords hit the air and she swooped him up out of his highchair and they danced together like no one was watching. She snuggled him and kissed his chubby little cheeks and told him she loved him and wants him to always remember this as their song. And she cried. A lot.

While I never like to see her cry, I know these were good tears. Healing tears. Loving tears. Heck, if I could I would have been crying right along with her. Because it was really something special between a mother and her son.

It’s not a moment he’ll remember, no matter how much he may grow to appreciate music in his lifetime. But it was special to mom. And it was special to me.

All I could do in that moment was soak it up and think to myself “what a wonderful world.”

 

A Moment of Magic October 31, 2013

I don’t believe in magic. Not in the traditional sense at least. The whole now you see me, now you don’t idea? What fun is that anyway? But I will never forget the day I discovered a different kind of magic.

To the rest of the world it was Halloween. To me, it was Jo’s eighth birthday. That’s all that mattered. I had been living with her and the man with the leather belt for a few months, and had seen my fair share of things I still wish I hadn’t. But this was a day to remember for all the right reasons.My Kind of Magic

This was the one time I ever witnessed Jo and the man with the leather belt happy at the same time. I was surprised he remembered the day at all, since he was usually pretty forgetful about basic things like having anything besides frozen pizza and beer in the fridge. But alas, he surprised us both. After dinner (he actually cooked something), he got out a pink cupcake with a single candle on it and sang happy birthday to her. I sat by her side, proud and humbled to share in such a special moment. Then he gave her a present. It wasn’t wrapped (it was still in the Toys ‘R Us bag) but that was beside the point.

It was magic. Literally. He gave her a 100-peice magic set. “I had one when I was about your age, so I thought maybe you’d like it,” he told her. She loved it. They spent the next few hours experimenting and doing something I’d never seen them to before. They laughed together.

That was the real magic. Magic is in moments like these. Moments brought to life by a power within us to believe. “Magic flows through us,” Sarah Ban Breathnach writes in Simple Abundance, “mystery infuses every encounter of every day…You have no idea of the countless lives you touch in the course of a lifetime.”

My life was touched that day by something special. I may not believe in the hocus pocus kind of magic, but that day I became a believer in a whole other kind of magic entirely. I became a believer that the power is within us to live this magic in our daily lives. To find and embrace moments of pure joy is a magic all its own.