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To Be(lieve) Or Not To Be(lieve)

Fall has arrived. You can smell it. Feel it. That chill gets under your skin and pushes you to make changes, pursue your dreams, clean out the garage. We’re conditioned early on that beginnings happen in the fall. Armed with new clothes, pencils, and aspirations, we began each school year thinking, “I’m going to make varsity.” Or “I’m going to get all A’s.” Whatever the goal, there’s something magical about fall that makes you believe anything is possible.

And why not believe?

As children it’s easy to believe in anything. My niece and nephew, 8 and 5, believe wholeheartedly in the Tooth Fairy. They were told of this character and that was it, no questions asked. And honestly, whether the Tooth Fairy is real or not, aren’t our beliefs ultimately about hope? Wouldn’t it be nice to think we can leave a tooth under our pillow and when we wake up there’s money?

Last week when I was in Florida my grandfather had two teeth pulled. “Let’s put them under your pillow,” I told him. He looked at me like I was nuts. Had he let me do that, I would have snuck into his room during the night and left a twenty-dollar bill under his pillow. He would have loved it. But why, as adults, do we no longer believe in these tales?

My niece Paige recently wrote a letter to the Tooth Fairy and when Paige received a letter back from the Tooth Fairy, the following conversation followed.

Paige:   “Mom, did you write this letter?” Jackie:  “What makes you think that?” Paige:   “First, we have this paper, and second, you make those designs sometimes on your letters.”

Jackie denied writing the letter and now questions when she should tell her daughter the truth. But why should she? So that Paige is not ridiculed in school for believing? Or because there’s really no such thing as the Tooth Fairy? Maybe kids become adults the moment they stop believing in magic.

One of my favorite TV shows is “Once Upon A Time.” I love fairy tales and the thought of these stories mixing with real life in intriguing. Does it mean I believe in witches and spells and Pinocchio? Does it matter? At the end of the day, whether you believe in the Tooth Fairy or not, the one thing you should at least always believe in, is yourself.

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