Years ago, after my husband’s granddaughter was born, we went shopping for a gift. My husband, knowing little about baby clothes, stayed in Books-A-Million while I went to look at baby clothes.
In Baby Gap, I heard a small voice say, “Mama, I want a Harry Potter wand that really works.” Following the sound of the voice, I spotted a little tow-headed boy, approximately five or six years old. He pulled on his mother’s loose-fitting smock-type dress. “Mama. Mama. I want a Harry Potter wand that really works.”
While waiting to pay for my purchases, the mother and son were in line in front of me. The mother was lovely. Tall. Long honey-colored hair. Tanned legs. Slim. From the style of her dress, I thought she might be pregnant. Her little boy continued to tug on her dress and plead, “Mama, I want a Harry Potter wand that really works.”
She looked down at him and explained in a calm, patient voice. “The wands are pretend. They don’t really work. You have to make believe they are real.”
I knew many children, some very young, were watching the Harry Potter movies, and this little boy was one of them.
The child ignored his mother’s explanations, as though she had not spoken. He continued to pull on her dress and plead in the same sweet tone. “Mama, I want a Harry Potter wand that really works.”
I left Baby Gap with a few dainty baby clothes and, for no particular reason, went into Old Navy. I didn’t need anything else. After looking at some clothes, I prepared to leave. My husband would be waiting for me in the bookstore. As I strolled down an aisle near the exit/entrance of Old Navy, I heard the same little boy. “Mama, I want a Harry Potter wand that really works.”
Knowing no toy can replicate the magic of Harry Potter’s wand, a wave of sadness swept over me. The child firmly believed what he saw in the theater. To him, wands were magical. He’d been a good boy and he wanted a Harry Potter wand.
I remember when my children discovered Santa wasn’t real. It hurt us all. But, in time, they learned about a different kind of magic, a magic that lives inside them and inside the hearts of other good people.
I believe in magic.