Where’s My Magic, Dammit?

Sometimes a day hands you a magical moment, the kind that friends tap you to write about in one of those many viral campaigns on Facebook this summer. This is not one of those days. This means that for the third day in a row I will be disappointing my daughter, who has agreed to post her own magic moments on Facebook and three days ago tapped me to do the same.

If you are reading this it means you have not deserted my blog, despite its inexcusably long absence. And here I am on your doorstep — feeling sheepish and apprehensive but hopeful you will show me to my old bedroom in your blogging home once more. Still, I wouldn’t blame you if you had assumed me dead (or worse still, a lightweight) or if you shut the door in my face.

But first let me explain. I have a long list of excuses reasons for not blogging. I got busy professionally. We were traveling. It’s been gardening season and I go into a zen-like, mindless trance while pulling weeds and drowning Japanese beetles with Dead-Bug. For the past few months I have even given up newspapers and most television to spend my limited free time binge-reading all five “Game of Thrones” novels. Most seriously, my mother has come to live with us and we have devoted ourselves to helping her get adjusted…a job we are honestly happy to do for a woman who gave so much to me when I was an angst-ridden 13-year-old. All of these have totally cut into the time I have for the introspection that a blog requires. But part of me still believes in magic, and hopes that by some miracle you have not un-followed me.

Still with me? Good, because I want to tell you the closest thing I had to a magical moment today. I’m sure many of you have been asked on Facebook this summer to sign up for a multi-week marathon of posting your blessings, reasons to be grateful, 25 things people don’t know about you, etc. These have been making the rounds on social media these days, and I frankly have found them tiresome. Usually I just read my friends’ postings while feeling a little smug that I’ve eluded the trap. I’ve even resisted the ever-growing conga line of people who’ve embraced the ALS ice bucket challenge, a group that now includes the New England Patriots, many celebrities, Ethel Kennedy and most surprisingly, even some of my most cynical friends. I think my sister and I have been the only ones who haven’t posted videos of ourselves dumping ice on our heads. We both agreed that writing a nice check to the ALS Foundation was far preferable than getting our naturally curly hair wet and having to spend an hour blowing it out all over again. (I know that many of those who donated also were game enough to ice themselves down, but I have no sense of fun. Just ask my kids.)

But as I mentioned earlier, three days ago my daughter Rachel asked me to look for magic in each day and write about it. I thought about it this morning but once again was too busy to slow down and look for any magic. We have been enjoying a visit from son Ryan and his friend, David, both visiting from England, and it has been wonderful but not magical. We also hosted our son Ben, his friend Tom, and some of my son John’s teenaged friends over the past two days for swimming and watching a wrestling pay-per-view. I’ve been frantically defrosting hotdogs, drying wet towels and blowing up air mattresses. Just as the last teens left today, my husband Bob hosted some business associates at our home, and lunch had to be made. Horror of horrors, for the first time in memory, we had no beer in the house.

And of course, there were our dogs Gus and Rita to attend to, and they have been work recently. We have had a few challenging weeks with Rita, who did not take it well when we left her in a kennel while on vacation (even though she looked happy on the kennel’s streaming video). We arranged for them to be bathed and groomed before we picked them up, and Rita arrived home with gleaming gold fur, a pink bow, an attitude and some bad habits we thought she had outgrown. She started having the occasional accident on the floor, and my olfactory sense developed a raging paranoia, smelling plots everywhere. And I smelled one in the house today, right after I had brought Rita outside to do her business in an “authorized” location, and just as Bob’s business associates were arriving for lunch.

Armed with paper towels and Nature’s Miracle, I went on the hunt. But where was it? I checked all the spots in the house where she had offended before, but could not find anything. I smelled it most strongly in our small laundry area, and crawled along the floor there without any luck. I was equally unlucky in the kitchen, with its dark floor that hid a multitude of dark deeds. I crouched down and eyeballed the surface of the floor like a golfer eyeing his shot at ground level. Luckily, Bob’s business guests had retreated to the open-air porch and its forgiving breezes.

Then I spied it. Not on the floor, but on the bottom of my shoe. I pulled off the shoe and brought it just close enough to my nose to confirm it. And then I laughed, so hard I was afraid I’d be the next offender. I shared the story with John and he laughed just as hard. And I realized that sometimes a day just hands you magic, but other days you step in it.

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25 thoughts on “Where’s My Magic, Dammit?

  1. Nice to see your blog again, Cathy! I have missed it.

    As a victim of the recent Sunshine Challenge on Facebook, I can tell you it is not my thing – yet I am reluctantly going along with it because I did not want to offend the person who challenged me. With 2 days left, I worry that I won’t be able to come up with 6 more blessings! Can one of them be that I am finally finished with the challenge?

    I’m not watching the ALS bucket challenge videos anymore, although I have a wonderful friend with this horrible disease. I do hope they raise awareness as well as much-needed funds for research and services.

    I applaud you for taking such loving care of your Mom. We had Uncle Walt with us for about 5 years, and it enriched our lives in many ways. Please give your Mom my love and best wishes. I look forward to your next entry.

    • Wanda, thanks for reading and for sympathizing. I feel like such a fuddy-duddy when I refuse to do playful but (to me) slightly ridiculous things like dumping water on my head. It is far easier to write a check!

      Thanks also for your encouraging words about the rewards of caring for an aging loved one. My mom, as you know, was a wonderful nurturer who always made all of her children and their friends feel special. Having her here required some adjustment but it has been outweighed by the joy she brings to our lives. It helps to have a great husband who is a thousand percent behind the idea, and the rare gem of a non-sullen teenager.

      Hope all is well with you, Mike, the guys and your two new daughters.

  2. So glad you are back. Thanks for the laugh 🙂

  3. Priceless! I love reading your blog.

  4. I step in magic moments all the time; and I’m glad, these days, to at lease be aware enough to pause and count my blessings and have a good laugh–especially with all the horrible things going on in the world… Thanks for the thoughts… Love reading your blog, no matter when it comes out!!

  5. My magic just kicked in with your hilarious blog….I totally “get” you.

  6. Hah. I am one of those same kind of people…I’d rather write the check too. Actually, I take that back, I’d rather be one of the people that dump the water on themselves, but alas I’m just a fuddy duddy, so I’d write the check too. It does sound like you’re spread rather thin with all the things you have to deal with right now. But am glad to have you back on here with your magical posts….for the rest of us, we need look no further for our own helping of magic!

  7. Welcome back. You always brighten the day.

  8. ………..and you STILL came out smelling like a Rose…..great read. Thank you. Michael Graz

  9. Ha! Nice to see you back!

  10. Welcome back! You’ve been missed.

  11. However infrequent while you’re living your life, I love your blog!!! Keep it coming – whenever!!! Date: Mon, 18 Aug 2014 20:34:27 +0000 To: margaretoroth@msn.com

  12. Thanks, Margaret!

  13. I like your description of the ice-bucket challenge as a conga line. I always wonder how these things build their momentum. And the fact that you’ve brought your mother into your home is more magic than most people are capable of. Wonderful post, Catherine.

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