I often hear overwhelmed parents commenting about Elf on the Shelf, Leprechaun traps and things they don't want to start because they don't want to have to continue it. It's just one more thing to add to their "to do list". Now, we've invited fairies that aren't even holiday centered, to be around EVERY SINGLE DAY. Why would anyone do this? Isn't there enough to do? Who has time for that?
Me, and I'll tell you why.
If you walk into my house any day of the week you will probably find a half finished craft project or two. Art supplies are strewn across my counters, floors and couches. Toys, that I swear I have put back in their places twenty times over, lay in just the right spots for me to step on in the middle of the night when I am stumbling down the hall to comfort the latest child to wake up. (I get to see each of them at least once a night)
Nine times out of ten my house is a disaster, I'm exhausted, and I should probably spend my few spare minutes picking up rather than cavorting with fairies, but I'm raising believers. They are curious and creative, full of imagination and joy. They fabricate the most unbelievable stories for me. The line between real and make-believe is hazy at best, but they BELIEVE with all their little hearts. It's amazing how quickly tired melts into enthusiasm and how my bloodshot eyes can find joy in the happy disaster that surrounds me. I get caught up in all of the magic and fun. What did Twanda say today? Do you really think she can bring pixie dust? Will we be able to fly? What do you think fairies like for breakfast? Can we make her a present? Maybe we should share some of our cookies.
I came to my kitchen one day to find the entire sliding glass patio doors covered in melted crayon and a joyful two year old and her six year old sister grinning at their creation. "Look Mom!" they cried, happily pointing out the six feet of windows covered in gloppy mess that I was going to have to clean. Amidst the gooey mess was a picture of a fairy with a note above it. "Vivian believes in fairies!!!!" I celebrated their artwork with them, gushed about how beautiful it was and then set to work scraping it all off. So they could "do it again sometime," I told them. I couldn't bring myself to erase the fairy, she still looks over our kitchen proudly proclaiming that "Vivian believes in fairies"
While there are mornings that in my tired stupor I hear the girls stirring and panic about whether the fairies wrote back, dashing to the fairy mailbox wearing my pajamas to check, I wouldn't trade it for the magic that lights up their faces when they discover the tiny letters with their names on them. Their favorite phrase is "I have an idea" and it is usually followed by something outlandish that they are sure I can figure out a way to accomplish. They don't ever question if things are possible or not. They just tell me what it is, expecting that it will happen. I am always impressed with their creativity and intimidated by their plans but I have come to learn over time that it's their belief that keeps me working, learning, and growing. They believe and I get to play a very small part of that magic.
It's not easy to make pancakes in the shape of fairies, or any of the other "ideas' they conjure regularly and while I constantly worry about whether the fairy has written or not, the memories that have been created have far outweighed any inconvenience. These days are short, and I only get to be a part of their magical childhood once. Their belief in fairies may not last forever but I hope these memories will. So while my home is not the cleanest on the block and I still get far too little sleep, I choose to make time for the fairies. My girls are believers and that is more than enough reason for me.