“You need to believe in things that aren’t true. How else can they become?” ~ Terry Pratchett, Hogfather
G carries around this máti — an amulet that GP gave to her to ward off evil spirits. She believes in its power. She sleeps next to it at night and during the day, she straps it onto the backpack that she takes to school. One night, she thought she lost her máti. She was beside herself.
She cried to me, “Now I’m going to get nightmares because I don’t have my máti!”
I asked her one day why she loves her máti so much. Her answer was simple. “Because I sleep better when I have it. I don’t have nightmares anymore. And it also protects me during the day.”
Her belief in it gives her peace of mind. I envy her belief, for my trust in anything is scarce. I believe more in setting a low bar so as to not be disappointed. Often times when I have believed in something, it failed me.
As a child, I used to wear a cross around my neck. For me, it symbolized that my belief in Jesus would save my eternal soul. Somewhere along the way, I stopped wearing it, probably because I stopped believing in its power to save me. If it couldn’t protect me from all the hurt that I was experiencing in this life, how could I trust in its power to save me in an after-life that was not even guaranteed?
I want to go back to believing in something again. I want to remember what it’s like to feel safe and secure. I want to go to bed with a strong belief that things will be fine when I wake up in the morning. Mostly I just want to know that everything’s going to be alright.