Pondering the Pavement

December 22, 2011

Remember the Magic

Filed under: Uncategorized — cfilius @ 7:03 am

“Never worry about the size of your Christmas tree.
In the eyes of children, they are all 30 feet tall.”  

                                                            – Larry Wilde

Christmas 1964 with my grandparents

Some random boy with his grandparents. Christmas, 1964

To this day I vividly recall barreling down the stairs on Christmas morning to discover a stuffed dog, sitting upright on a new sled, waiting with open paws just for me. Sure, the sled was cool, but that little beige dog captivated me. It was a Calvin and Hobbs moment. The dog was real to me and we were inseparable for years to come. He was the epitome of soft and cuddly. He had a music box in his back and, when some random adult would crank the wind-up key, my new sidekick would play a lullaby just for me. I would not go to bed without him clutched in an innocent death grip. And that is why, in my creative three-year-old logic, I had to name him ‘Sleepy Dog.’

He was soothing and fuzzy and a most devout listener. He was a constant companion that I dragged around to so many places that he should have had his own passport. As time passed by my buddy started showing some wear and tear. His floppy ears were getting worn and thin. The poor fella even lost his nose in some freak unmentionable accident. My mother, carrying on the age-old tradition of parental plastic toy surgery, replaced it with a small blob of yellow yarn.

He fascinated me. So much, in fact, that I had no choice but to yank out his music box, too, ya know? How else could I learn what made my pal tick? It didn’t occur to me that it wouldn’t play once my experiments ceased. Thus began a life-long career of placing far too many carts way ahead of a vast number of horses. His tan coat was looking dingier over the years, too. He was, like the rest of us, aging. But his loyalty remained as solid as ever. That dog was my friend, my confidant and my sidekick on numerous adventures. And, yes, in case you’re wondering, I still have him. The sled has long gone, as have the memories of many other Christmas gifts from that, as well as future, years. But ‘Sleepy Dog’ remains. I cannot imagine not having him or the magic he brought me. He was, and on many levels, still is as real as you and me.

This holiday season, and beyond, I hope you rediscover that magic within. Let it rise to the surface where you can scoop it up in your arms, embrace it and laugh with the unfaltering freedom as only a child can.



Copyright © 2011, C. A. Filius

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