Before tonight, I hadn’t been to Shedd Aquarium since the 70’s. And even though that’s a really long time, not as much has changed (in me) since then as you might think.
I was gazing at this guy (sorry for the blur):
Completely. Entranced. With everything about him. 32,500 animals live here, so giving this kind of devotion attention to just one thing might not be the best visitor’s strategy, but I couldn’t move… because a mega-memory was being brought to surface…
That’s right. Sea-Monkeys. Here I am, in close proximity of dolphins, whales, sharks, otters, octopus… and I’m having a transcendental moment triggered by brine shrimp? Yep.
Because those brine shrimp from 30+ years ago represented the first time I had faith.
The first time I believed.
Not in Santa or the Tooth Fairy.
But the magical, aquatic kingdom of Sea-Monkeys! Where they live in castles and always smile to show their perfect teeth. Where they hang out as blissful family units, having the time of their shrimpy life. Only I didn’t know they were really just tiny artemia nyos.
But it didn’t matter.
Because with my whole heart, I accepted that outrageous marketing as true. I was confident in the existence of this alternative colony of life, where they communicated, worked, played and lived together in a way that was similar to my life, but better. And not here. I really identified with the “not here” part because I had always felt as alien as they looked. I related to them, and I would have paid or done anything to have them close to me. Off the page, and on my desk… right in front of me… so I could spend hours projecting my vivid imagination all over their every movement.
So I could practice my faith.
And that’s the Sea-Monkey Effect, believing in the actuality of an unlikely thing so fiercely, that it becomes likely. Or at least possible.
What are you holding to be true these days?