Remember in "Dumbo" when Timothy gives Dumbo that magic feather to convince him that he can fly? And Dumbo totally believes it works and then when it flies out of his trunk while soaring above the circus he starts plummeting to the ground and Timothy has to tell him that the feather was never magic and he could fly all along?
Well I've seen that very phenomenon in action these last couple of weeks and I'm kind of in awe of watching it unfold.
So my daughter is not what you'd call the bravest kid out there nor is she super keen on trying new things (she's her Mother's daughter after all). While all our other friend's babies were swimming etc, Lu preferred to sit on the edge and survey and would scream if you actually tried to bring her in. Last winter we managed to actually get her in the water willingly and she kinda sorta liked it, but only if she stayed on the pool steps etc.
So this summer we finally convinced her that life in the water was grand and she's been happily playing in the shallows. But despite that newfound "okay-ness" with the water, if you tried to convince her to maybe, just maybe, try to swim a wee bit or god forbid, put her face in the water you'd be met with protests and a million reasons why that did not need to happen. Seriously, don't even attempt it. No chance.
But then! Then my brother put in a pool! A pool without a shallow end! Leaving her no choice but to go in THE DEEP WATER (cue scary music). Then enter my mother with a pair of simple swimming goggles from Canadian Tire that she bought with the sole purpose of ending the argument between the older cousins about whose turn it was with the other pair of goggles.
WELL, dammit if that cheap little pair of goggles didn't give this kid some kind of instant superhuman bravery and she went from kinda, sorta being in the water with a bit of something resembling swimming all while consumed in a lifejacket to a kid diving into the water head first, nose unblocked, no lifejacket, swimming underwater, kicking her little feet, paddling her little hands with no end in sight. And all of this literally within seconds of donning these goggles. These goggles are her magic feather! If she's wearing them she instantly feels like she can do anything in the water. Like from the goggles down she's cloaked in some kind of super swimming power. For a kid who is so adverse to trying things that seem out of her reach, I can't even believe what I'm seeing. It's absolutely that ridiculous.
Then I wonder -- do I have a magic feather??? The smart sensitive answer would be "of course, it's my family and colleagues that help me think I can do anything!" but let's not even go down that sentimental gooey road, as totally valid as it may, in fact, be. Maybe in this day and age our smartphones are our magic feathers? With them we can be as productive as we want to be, find out any information we can possibly need and take them away and we feel totally helpless and lost - despite the fact that we know we can get along just fine without them.
I don't know. I feel like I must have a magic feather in my life somewhere -- there are days when it feels like it's my girlfriends, there are days when I feel it's my favourite pair of shoes. I guess it varies depending on the severity of the day and just how much help I feel I need?
Today I feel like it was the coffee.