“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.

2 thoughts on “Believe

  1. growing up in the Philippines…I used to carry an amulet given by a childhood sweetheart w/ me at all times. but then I lost it and as I got older and have experienced lots of disappointments, like you…I became jaded and expected less from situations and less from people. The lower my expectations were, the less disappointment. Four years ago, when I went home to Hawaii, my aunt who sees this albularyo or medicine man asked me to see him. The experience was freaky and he told me things no one knew about me…and then he said that I have a very very strong energy that it attracts both the good and the bad. He gave me a scapular to wear to protect me and told me to never ever remove it at all times or if I do, at least keep it w/ me close by. At that time, I didn't think any of it but I wore it anyway out of respect and well, I've always liked scapulars. Funny thing, I'm not sure if it's because I've gotten used to it or I started to really believe in it but I can't be still w/out it. I couldn't sleep properly w/out it, and my days were often crappy (i.e. mini accidents, experiments not working) when I don't have it w/ me.

  2. I think after many years of bad influences and even worse experiences, I have come to the realization that I (myself) am the most important thing to believe in. I'm a glass half full kind of person by nature but also feel like a realist instead of a pessimist when it comes to expectations for the outcome of any situation. When you believe in yourself and acknowledge the incredible strength that has brought you this far…you must come to the conclusion that you can believe in your ability to handle whatever comes your way. Repeat to yourself often…I'll get through this, what am I meant to learn from this and how will I celebrate this victory once I shine through, on the other side of this challenge. Don't stop believing…in you!

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