Finding Your Magic

by Courtney Cummings

Lately I’ve been thinking about the idea of “magic” and if it’s actually something we all have. I’m not talking tarot card readings, physic abilities, or the ability to read minds; which, if I’m honest, I do believe I’m pretty psychic. I’m referring to that thing we were all made for – the reason we were placed on this earth, that special something we’re supposed to reveal to the masses in order to leave our mark on the world. 

A few weeks ago, one of my girlfriends recommended I read Tomi Adeyemi’s, Children of Blood and Bone, because I’m a fan of fantasy novels and this story follows the quest of main character, Zélie Adebola, who wishes to restore magic to the land of Orïsha. She also thought I’d love this book because all the characters are black and brown people. Win!  I was not at all expecting to zip through the book as fast as I did, nor was I expecting to question and contemplate how I could restore magic within myself. 

 
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Trust, I have no idea what my magic is. I’ve got a pretty good idea, but have I tapped into it fully? Don’t think so. I’m sure, like Adeyemi’s characters, light will shoot out the palms of my hands, and I’ll be absolutely sure of myself and my abilities.  I’m not there yet, but it’s coming.   

Three years ago I moved to Miami, relocating for work, and fell into a state of depression. It was a different sort of depression - I knew it wasn’t just work; it was in part due to the fact that work had become all I was doing and it didn’t make me happy. There was nothing feeding me creatively.  Working for self is all of our goals, but if we can find something to pay our bills in the meantime, while funding our goals, instead of stifling them, we’ve hit the jackpot.  With that realization, I decided to quit. No job lined up, just a leap of faith and believing that I could handle the next chapter. I guess you could say this was me tapping into my magic; or rather, taking the first step to find it.  

While there were those congratulating me on my new-found freedom, there were also those who doubted that my decision was wise. And you’ll have that, right?  When you tell someone one of your ideas, or share a dream that seems so grandiose to them, but comes as natural as drinking water to you. They tell you what you should, or shouldn’t be doing, when they’ve never actually done said thing themselves. There’s also self-doubt and fear of the process.  It’s all very natural, but this is the grey area where I think tapping into your magic comes into play.

Since quitting my job, I’ve had this feeling of being in love, and let’s be clear, I have no man. It’s bizarre, and feels weird – I’m kind of wondering if this is the magic part.  But there’s this sort of burn in my chest and a bit more self-awareness, where I’ve realized that I’ve actually fallen in love with myself. In experiencing this, digging into this little bit of magic I possess has also made me tap into my full potential.  

I don’t want to give away the plot, but there’s a scene in Children of Blood and Bone where Zélie asks another character, Inan, “What hurts more, using your magic, or suppressing it?” and I implore you to ask yourself this before heading to The Dreamer’s Brunch. I attended the first brunch a few years ago, and while I journal and write mostly everything down, I wasn’t really prepared to say my dreams aloud. As a result, I spit out the first things that came to my mind.  Today, I can admit; I didn’t know, and wasn’t ready to understand what I’m fully capable of. Like Inan, I was suppressing and stifling my magic, and it hurt.  

Our purpose and dreams are not always clear, but we typically have a pretty general idea. And when it’s embedded in our brain, what do we do to make sure we’re actually living in that purpose? How do we set out the path of following those dreams?  

It’s difficult maneuvering in the world, especially as a woman of color – sis, I get it, if no one else does. 

We have to pretend everything is ok, while our world crashes around and on top of us, dimming our light; while also dealing with the difficulty of life itself. But don’t you feel a little more at ease when you take just a sip of something that brings you joy?  

So, I ask you, what is the magic you possess? What can, or do you do to keep your magic alive?  

And when you make the discovery, here’s the real challenge – once you find the magic, you have to learn to be patient and trust it.  We have to learn to trust and believe in ourselves and the process. To feel all the feels and reflect on the losses, as well as the victories. Accountability of self is the ultimate form of maturity when discovering your magic, because it’s like, you were the one holding you back.  It’s an “aha!” moment of, “all I had to do was look inside.” 

I’m starting to believe that once we discover our magic, that treasure that’s a part of our genetic makeup, our dreams will become our constant reality. Why not live in that?   

Courtney Cummings is a Miami-based journalist and copy editor.