When you wish upon a star. Off key. In sparkles.

Last night, my kids put on a show. This is a frequent occurrence, and not surprising at all considering they are my children and I spent my entire childhood putting on shows for my parents. Whether they liked it or not.

The show opened with Sage, in full pink ballerina gear, dancing beautifully to the music in her head, as she wedged herself between the coffee table and the TV. It continued with Thalia, in some insane blue fairy princess costume (keep away from open flame), singing and flitting about the room like Tinkerbell on crack. Her song went something like this:

     Dreams are magic

     I love dreams. Dreaming dreams.

     When you find a dream that’s your one dream in your life….

     You can wish on a starry night there’s a dream up there somewhere.

     Find the dream you want…find iiiit for there is oooone

    Up in the stars, the starry night, the dream of your heart.

Her song was the most sappy, Disneyfied, saccharine thing ever to come out of a child’s mouth at one time.

Surely it was inspired by something she saw on the Disney Fantasy Cruise. As she sang, I could feel 6, maybe 7 cavities spontaneously emerging from beneath my tooth enamel.

And yet there I sat, all teary and sniffly. And totally, 100% in love.

Recently, Thalia came home a little frustrated when a little girl in her class said “I don’t believe in magic.” (Ironically, a girl who believes in Jesus.) I taught Thalia to say “well I disagree but I respect your opinion.”

I hope there’s never a time she doesn’t believe in magic and dreams and wishing on stars.

Sometimes I wish I did too.

I miss it.


32 thoughts on “When you wish upon a star. Off key. In sparkles.”

  1. Don’t we all!
    My kid lost her 1st tooth yesterday and this morning she swore she saw the Tooth Fairy

    1. So incredible to see the world through our children’s eyes/minds sometimes. I love this!

  2. “Ironically, a girl who believes in Jesus.”

    I laughed out loud at this. And then again.

    Sounds like front-row seats to the hottest concert in town.

  3. “Ironically, a girl who believes in Jesus.”
    That made me snort. Literally.
    A couple of nights ago we were asked the questions that led to a big discussion about God and Jesus and why Mummy and Daddy believe what they do (or don’t, actually) followed by the 6 year old girl child showing off her newest wobbly tooth and wondering when the Tooth Fairy would be coming by next. We might not have religion but we sure as heck have magic in our house.

    1. We are the same way. Exactly. All about Santa and Tooth Fairies and Easter Bunnies.

      My favorite line on the cruise was Thalia seeing Sleeping Beauty and saying, “she remembers me from Disney World!” That is the beautiful power of a child’s mind.

  4. I think believing in magic isn’t quite as hard as it looks. It’s just easier to do when you’re older, as long as you call it “suspending disbelief.”

    But I’m a 41-year-old born-again Pollyanna, baptized in a ginormous Shirley Temple glass.

  5. Whole wars are waged in the name of magic, right? I went through a little of imaginary creature remorse recently when the oldest discovered that *MOM!!! Might Actually Be the Easter Bunny.*

    I was thinking of all the heartache I could have avoided if I just didn’t make a big deal of hiding eggs or presents or creating elaborate stories … But then I just let it go. We learn from everything. The real, the imagined and the re-examined.

    Truth is a slippery subject.

    1. I am afraid of their disappointment too, because I still remember the day I discovered that Santa wasn’t real.

  6. Is it wrong that I never stopped believing in magic? I still look for unicorns in the woods when we hike and still hope on some Christmas Eve that I’ll wake to the sound of Santa on my roof. I’m keeping it alive as long as my kids will believe

  7. My six-year-old still believes his grandmother can fly. Neither my mom nor I ever say anything to refute this, though we have no idea why he thinks it to be true.

    Believe, I say!

  8. My oldest daughter doesn’t believe in the Easter Bunny, leprecauns, or fairies (except the Tooth Fairy). I have told her she is allowed her non-belief (I wrote about this recently, too), but she is not allowed to spoil it for her younger siblings.

    We are Catholic, and she, too believes in God and Jesus (as do I). I think faith and magic are different things, although I understand why non-believers in God may feel differently. After all, I still believe in magic (along the lines of fairies) AND miracles.

  9. One of my recent Egret the Elephant poems involved wishing on a falling star. I’m not superstitious but I still do that myself.

  10. “well I disagree but I respect your opinion.”
    this is WONDERFUL!

  11. My five-year-old found the Easter baskets before Easter…my husband quickly shut the closet door and distracted him. He didn’t say anything to his little brother or to me. He wants to believe in the Easter bunny, Santa…in magic. I love it.

  12. I don’t remember EVER believing in magic. My 6-year-old asked me the other day if angels were real. I told her some people believe in them, some don’t. She asked if it was the same as mermaids, to which I answered “well, kind of, but not really, because mermaids are not real and we just don’t know about angels, or God for that matter.” She replied that she can feel that God, angels and mermaids are all real. I told her I think that’s great. I hope magic stays with her.

  13. I am so invested in the magic…I didn’t know how wondrous a part of parenting it would be. On Sunday we spent the morning designing and building a fairy house for a friend’s newborn (to welcome her into the world of magic, too). Then my 6- and 8-year-olds renovated theirs, too.

  14. I love how you taught her how to disagree but still respect other people’s different opinions. My kid is only two so he’s nowhere near yet having to have debates with his classmates but I like to keep these ideas in mind because I’m certain he’ll run into them in the future.

    Okay on to magic. As a kid, I was a sucker for magic. I would watch Santa movies and seriously think that if I just wrote a note and left it on my desk, that it would be whisked away up the chimney (never mind that we didn’t have a chimney) when I stepped out of the room. So of course imagine my confusion when I returned to my room to find the envelope still there. I’m not sure how to treat Santa with my kid. Like I said, he’s only two, so he hasn’t asked any questions, but we have yet to give Santa gifts or take pics with Santa.

    That however doesn’t mean that I intend to crush any dreams he may have. If he truly believes that Santa is real, I’m not going to break it to him. In Harry Potter (my fave!) the last movie, Harry asks Dumbledore when they were in King’s Cross station: “Professor, is all of this real, or is it just in my head?” To which Dumbledore replied, “Of course this is all in your head. But what makes you think that it would be any less real?”

      1. I can’t wait until my boys are old enough for Harry Potter. But at the same time I don’t want to wish that time away either…

  15. It’s amazing how large a role magic plays in parenting and helping kids develop their imagination. With a four and six-year old, I’m holding to their innocent belief as long as I can. Sometimes it’s amazing when they ask a question, and I answer “Well, what do you think?” My son will start rambling on about dragons. And, wishing on the stars with little kids is pretty magical all on it’s own. The day them stop believing in Santa or the Tooth Fairy will be a pretty sad day. In the meantime, what a great feeling it must be for them to believe anything possible!

    Plus, my daughter may or may not believe that her tongue turns green when she’s lying… (which has come in handy from time to time)

  16. My biggest fear was that my older sons would tell my younger son about Santa or the Tooth Fairy. I told the older two that if they told him there was not Santa, there would be no Santa, worked like a treat. My youngest began to feel that no one would tell him the truth so when he lost a tooth at school he placed it under his pillow without telling any of us. I can still hear him shouting in the morning, “I knew it! I knew it!” While my husband and I were very sad to be caught, my son was thrilled to be let in on the big boy world and it was clear he was ready.

  17. I love the make-believe world and love that my 11 year old still goes along with it all even though I’m pretty certain she isn’t a “believer” anymore. I still remember trying to keep up the Santa story to my little sister when she grew suspicious that the boxes on her gifts said “made in China” (as opposed to “made at the North Pole”). I told her that the elves made the gifts but the boxes were made in China.

    And I just went to see a medium who “spoke” to my dad. Not sure where I stand on this whole subject, but I don’t really care b/c for a little while, he was there, and I was so happy to believe it might be true.

  18. As somebody who grew up without believing in Santa (my mother made sure I know presents are from HER), I can tell you magic is very special feeling that all kids should go through (including the final heartache upon waking up). Or feeling that remains forever with kid, big and small – so no heartache involved.
    That is why I still struggle to keep up the “magical” part of Tooth fairies, Easter bunnies and Santa alive, even when my then 6-year old coldly concluded that non of that exists – it all my doing. Boy, was I glad that same Easter when we were returning from our neighbour’s egg hunt we encountered a real bunny in our front yard. I yelled: “See, it is Easter bunny, it was him all along!” inducing happy squeals from my kids and scorning look from my scientific-realistic husband.

  19. We all still need magic in our lives, don’t we? The problem is how to find it and hold onto it. As for her respectful remark about disagreeing, I think you’ve got a diplomat in the making!

    1. I totally agree. we all need magic in our lives. It is one of the things that is so amazing about children, not only can they see the magic that is there, they can *sometimes* help us see it as well. And of course they have a special kind of magic all their own.

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