Anyone with a sentimental bone in his or her body has seen Miracle on 34th Street, the charming, heart-warming film that reminds us that believing is seeing, that Santa really does exist, and that miracles happen. Starring an adorable, little-girl Natalie Wood, the 1947 film is as much a holiday tradition as It’s a Wonderful Life and A Charlie Brown Christmas. For good reason. Whether it’s the miracle birth on Christmas or the miracle of light on Hanukkah, ’tis the season.
Which brings me around to miracles in general (can a miracle really be described in general?). Of course, there are the major life-saving miracles that truly evoke awe; those are in a category all their own. But what about those other “I-can’t-believe-this-good-thing-happened-it’s-a-miracle” moments? To wit:
There are yesterday’s Alabama election results. Truly a miracle of hard work, determination, and the belief that good must win out.
There are the tickets to Hamilton that B. procured a few days ago as a surprise early birthday present for me. The fact that he found tickets — aisle seats, no less — and that we got to go to this extraordinary show that I’d nearly given up hope of ever seeing (its LA run ends at the end of December) qualifies in my mind as nothing short of miraculous.
Want more? Just yesterday I sold an essay of mine to a national magazine for its spring issue. Each time this happens, I’m as surprised and amazed as the first time. Fairy godmother, anyone?
And today, while browsing in my library’s used-book store, I found the new, best-selling novel that I have been longing to borrow but could not because the library waiting list is weeks and weeks long. There it was, just waiting for me for just four dollars. Title me wonder-full.
Sure, one person’s miracle is another person’s coincidence; someone’s magic is someone else’s random luck. In this season of possibility and hope, I choose magic and miracles and Tinkerbell.
I choose to believe.
ⓒ 2017 Claudia Grossman