Messages in the Sand:
Can you remember the thrill of magic? “What?” You ask. MAGIC. Most of us believed in it in some form or fashion as children. Santa Claus. The Tooth Fairy. Our imaginary friends. Coming back to you? Well can you really remember the FEEL of that magic?
Give it a try. Can you recall that FEELING you had as a child in the days leading up to Christmas morning? Or maybe what it felt like waking up and realizing today was the day, then rushing out to the living room to see what Santa had left. There was a thrill to believing in something as magical as good old St. Nick.
I was reminded of that feeling recently while having my coffee down at the beach not far from my home. Someone magical in my neighborhood leaves messages in the sand for those of us who will get up early enough to take them in before high tide and beach activity takes them away.
They are so special to me they will get me out of bed long before my body is ready so that I can run down to see what words of wisdom have been left on any given day. I feel Iike a kid when I begin to rise from a deep slumber, hesitant to even open my eyes, and then it hits me: “Message in the sand! Hurry! Get up!” It feels like it did every Christmas morning long ago.
The other day I was up especially earl before the sun and cruised down to catch the beautiful transition from night to day. I lumbered over to see the message knowing there was no real hurry as the tide was still very low and no one was up yet to mess up the artwork. I reached the viewing spot and was caught off guard to see the mystery writer in the act. My heart leapt, and there was a moment of panic that I had ruined the magic. I felt exactly like I had caught Santa Claus in the act. I backed quietly away and left him to his work.
I now know who creates the inspiration for all of us in the beachside community and that’s okay because his messages are still so much fun to get each morning. But that morning I realized the impact a random act of kindness can have on people. The sand-writer has no idea who will see his work each morning, nor does he ask for any recognition. He does it anonymously the messages he leaves behind change the trajectory of days for most who see them. It is a random act of kindness that has a magical effects.
I don’t think we should let our efforts to create magic go by the wayside after children shed their beliefs in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and other magical figures. What random message of inspiration could you leave for someone today? It doesn’t have to be penned perfectly on a stretch of sand, but scribbled on a card or piece of paper and left on a desk, doorstep or public place. Maybe pair it with a flower or sweet treat. Our lives are so hectic these days, I can’t think of a single person who couldn’t use a little serenity delivered to them now and then. Sign it if you’d like. (Especially if you think your recipient might be inclined to be creeped out by an anonymous gesture.). But you can always leave it packaged beautifully in a public place and addressed to “the next person who uses this restroom” or ask a server to deliver it to their next client when they settle the bill. The point is, to share a little magic with those who have forgotten how fun believing in it can be.