Magic sometimes happens in my world. At least that’s what I like to call it when the stars line up and make things happen just the way I need them to be, in that moment.
My daughter and I can read each other’s minds. We often finish each other’s sentences, and share each other’s thoughts. But that’s not really magic. I chalk that up to the fact that we are so close. I’m also very close to my sisters. Once, while talking with one of my sisters on the phone, she stopped mid-sentence because what she had been getting ready to say wasn’t really how she wanted to finish that sentence. Then I spoke those very words and asked if that was what she had been about to say. It freaked her out because I’d been right. It freaked me out too, especially since those words were completely out of context and nonsensical. I don’t know if she had been about to say them because I had thought them, or if I thought them because she was about to say them. Either way, it was a very strange moment, but it wasn’t magic.
Another time, my sister had moved and I was driving to her new house but couldn’t remember the address. This was before cell phones. I stopped at a pay phone and dialed what I thought was her new phone number. I recognized the man who answered, but it wasn’t my brother-in-law, it was his brother. Their voices are similar, but I knew the difference. I thought he was visiting and had answered their phone, but that wasn’t the case. I had called him at his office. The phone numbers weren’t even similar. But he gave me the address and all was well. This was kind of like magic.
The real magic happens less often, and it is striking and powerful and totally unexplainable.
The most recent example occurred on the morning of my daughter’s wedding last summer. We spoke on the telephone before heading to the venue to get things set up. During our conversation, I learned that she wanted/needed a chalkboard to make a sign for guests to know where to leave their gifts. I told her I would take care of it, no problem. Leave it to me.
I hung up the phone and Ken and I left our hotel room. When we got into the car, I said, “Let’s find a garage sale, we need a chalkboard.”
“How do you know there will be a chalkboard even if we find a garage sale on the way?” he asked.
“It’ll be there, and it will be perfect,” I replied.
When we took our exit from the highway, there as a garage sale sign at the corner. It was on our way! How convenient. We followed the signs and a few blocks later, pulled up to the curb. It was a big sale and there was stuff everywhere. As we approached the driveway, a nice lady said, “Good Morning!” Ken said good morning and asked, “You wouldn’t happen to have a chalkboard would you?”
“You mean like this one?” She picked up a chalkboard that had been leaning against a tree just near where she was standing.
“That’s perfect!” I cried. “How much?”
“Oh, you can have this for free,” She said. “It’s seen better days.”
“Thank you very much,” I said, stealing a glance at Ken, who was shaking his head in wonder.
We browsed for a few minutes longer and I found a pretty vase for a dollar, then we were on our way.
After we loaded the free chalkboard and got back into the car, I squealed with joy!
“Ask and you shall receive,” I said.
“No, that’s magic,” Ken said. “Vanessa Magic.”
We arrived at the wedding venue right on time. I found a hammer and tightened the nails around the frame of the chalkboard, and gave it a quick coat of chalkboard paint. Soon it was ready for lettering by a very talented friend.
The rest of the day was filled with puzzle pieces falling into place as everyone pitched in to get things set up and ready for the ceremony that evening. And it was perfect. As the late afternoon sun dappled through the tree leaves, and the guests were seated in the shade on the grassy lawn, I held my daughter’s arm and we floated down the aisle together.
It was magical – especially when the heels of her beautiful shoes got stuck in the mud when the groom lifted her for a hug!
Perfectly imperfect magic.