'Tis the season and once again Owen has asked me, "Is Santa real", I answered with the same vague assurance that "Magic is real". This year it fell a little flatter than last, which fell flatter than the year previous. He is almost 10 years old and is asking a sincere question, hoping for an answer that he has already stopped believing true. Owen is growing up and although I have never been a proponent of holiday hype, the loss of Santa IS a rite of passage. I pondered Owen's question for a few days and realized that he was ready.
Tonight, while Bodhi napped, Shane and I sat with him and answered his question. We told him that the spirit of giving is real, the magic is real. Taking his hands, I invited Owen to join the circle of magic keepers. We lit a candle. We sat cross legged in a circle, Shane, Owen and I. We invited Owen to help keep magic alive. His eyes teared at the loss, rites of passage aren't easy.
As his Mom, I have witnessed Owen's arrival in the world, with his deep, penetrating eyes still swimming in a sea of infinite possibility. I watched him grow, crawl, walk, run, read, and cope with a divorce and it's accompanying sorrows. I watched him mature and each new thing has been a celebration and a loss. He is taking the early steps into manhood. My hope is that he will bring the beauty, the hope, the magic and the mystery of childhood with him. As Owen stood and left the circle I stared after him and was reminded that as we leave childhood our magic isn't lost, it just translates into hope and hope kindled will forever remind us of a world ripe with possibility and awe. A world that, as magic keepers, it is our task to remember.