Last week, I watched the movie “Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium.” Yes, it came out several years ago and as usual, I’m behind on movies. This one was not particularly well received by the critics, but it always seemed intriguing to me. It was kind of silly, but I thought it was cute. If you haven’t seen it, it is about a man who owns a magical toy store. The man, played by Dustin Hoffman, is quite old. As the movie progresses, the viewer learns that he is over 400 years old actually. He has decided that he is old enough and it is his time to die.
The toy store does not agree. It is depressed and frightened by his leaving. The store, because after all it is a magical toy store, begins to lose it’s magic. Toys become lethargic and have lost the ability to play. Mr. Magorium begins having a difficult time getting to his apartment above the store because the magic door that leads him there begins to malfunction.
Mahoney, Mr. Magorium’s assistant and manager of the store, played by Natalie Portman, learns that Mr. Magorium has decided to die and leave the store to her. She does not believe she has enough magic in herself to keep the store happy and content. She takes Mr. Magorium to a park and asks him to do several different activities that are very playful. Of the several things she has him do, my favorite was dancing on bubble wrap. It was a fun and playful scene. When he is finished dancing, Mr. Magorium asks Mahoney why she is having him do all this. She says to remind him of all the magical things he does.
I don’t know about you, but I could use a little more magic. I could use more play and more light-heartedness in the world. We have lost our sense of wonder in the world. Some of us never really knew wonder. We look at bubble wrap in the park and think of litter, instead of dancing. We watch news that is beyond depressing. We deal with heart-ache, illness and pain on a daily basis and sometimes there is simply no getting through it quickly. Magic toy stores are hard to find.
By the end of the movie, Mahoney has found her own magic. She found strength in herself and the store comes back to life. It is happy and magical again.
Every day does not have to be a struggle. There are bad things that happen around the world every day and all the sadness is overwhelming. But you have to find whatever it is in you that is magical and makes you happy. You probably won’t get to ride a unicorn to work, but you might get to wake up most mornings feeling mostly happy. It might be easier to smile and easier lay out bubble wrap in the park and dance.
Abusers try to kill out that spark of magic. I hope it still burns in you and you do whatever it takes to feed that spark and let it light every step of your journey. The world certainly needs your light.
What is the magical, playful thing you do to help yourself heal and be happy?