When I was really young, I would sit in the grass for long periods of time, combing through the stalks for four-leaf clovers. My brown eyes would study inch after inch of grass, searching for the elusive, seemingly mythical magic that could be found in the four-leaf shape.
I don’t think at five or six I really knew why I needed the magic of the lucky clover. I’ve long since lost touch with the wild imagination of that girl, but I’m guessing she probably would have thought the four-leaf clover would allow her to talk to cats or change her Barbies’ hair to pink with one touch or reveal the real Smurf village.
Nonetheless, one day, I eventually found one. My mom laminated it, and it did, in fact, feel like a magic moment. But I still couldn’t talk to cats or pet a unicorn or anything truly exciting. I forgot about four-leaf clovers. I grew up.
And then, one day when I was thirty, I found myself once more looking for four-leaf clovers. Sitting on the edge of our deck, my bare feet planted on the ground as I sought a moment of clarity and peace, I found myself scanning the grass once more for the magic of the plant. It was silly, I knew. Still, after my husband had lost his job, after our first dog had died leaving me in the darkest depression, and after life just didn’t feel magical anymore, I suppose I just wanted to believe that magic could still exist. I told myself that if I found a four-leaf clover in the grass, maybe things would be okay.
Day after day, I’d sit in the grass, a quiet reprieve from the complexities of life. I’d sit in the quiet, searching for the four-leaf clover that I hoped the universe would send my way as a sign that it would get better. That I wouldn’t be heartbroken forever. That I would one day stop crying in the shower over Henry. That my husband after years of searching would sort out his career and identity. That things would stop being so hard.
I never did find that four-leaf clover. But I’d argue I did, in fact, find a sense of magic. Because slowly, as time went on, I found myself thinking of Henry with a smile again–mostly because our crazy Great Dane left me little energy for grief. After many jobs and years of being a little lost, my husband found himself again in his career. Things stopped being so hard.
I write this because I know somewhere out there, someone is hoping for that four-leaf clover. They’re desperate to find the magic. We all search for our version of a four-leaf clover at some point in our lives. We’re all desperate to feel that possibility once more, to remember that life will be okay again.
But here’s the thing I’ve learned: the real magic in life doesn’t come in four leaves. It comes when you understand that you are capable of not only surviving hard times but thriving. It comes when you realize that there is always possibility and hope for a better tomorrow. Most of all, it comes when you know deep within that you are capable of figuring it all out and changing what tomorrow looks like.
You don’t need to find a four-leaf clover to find the magic you need–because what my five-year-old self didn’t understand was that the magic was simply in the believing magic existed.
Be the Magic.
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