Last night I went to the Village Fest, a weekly open air festival with crafts, art, food, music, dancing and so much more. It's an amazing, beautiful night, where most everybody in the community comes together under the palm trees of the main strip. Everybody is very kind and friendly, and there's a lot of laughter in the air.

There are also some stunningly wacky things here, too. Funny new age musicians, old couples walking their tiny teacup dogs, a beef jerky salesman, an ask-the-rabbi stand.

I stopped for a while to watch a magician, who was doing this levitating princess trick -- using a tiny princess doll on a playing card.

"Come on, princess. Levitate!" he commanded.

She didn't levitate.

"Come on, princess. Levitate."

Again, no levitation.

"Levitate. Levitate. Levitate."

He went through this bit for about five minutes. He was getting visibly sweaty and looked all awkward. Finally, people started to walk away. What was once an enormous crowd had become a few stragglers.

I had so much hope, I waited for a few more minutes.

"I guess she's not going to levitate," he finally shrugged and began to pack up his things.

I feel like the not-so-levitating princess a lot lately.

I made this incredible move and took this enormous leap of faith to come here, because it's what I thought would be best for me and my future. I should very well be flying, soaring, levitating.

But as much as I try to remain positive, I'm filled with so much sadness. I cry for New Orleans, a city that is part of my soul. I cry for Jason, my boyfriend who alone with his nightmares and his severe physical and emotional pain. I cry for the people who lost loved ones, who have to wake up every morning and remember their loss all over again.

More than anything, I'm still burdened by this accident that hurt Jason and killed a fellow skydiver. It reminds me of the Jesus prayer in "Franny and Zooey" -- it's an ancient meditation that, if repeated incessantly, becomes a part of you as regular as a heartbeat.

Sometimes I think this accident was my Jesus prayer. I don't draw a breath without this accident. I don't go a moment without thinking about it, without thinking of that skydiver's family. I don't go a day without sending love and prayers their way.

One day maybe I'll wake up and my heavy boots will be lighter, the sadness lifted, the ability to levitate returned.

"Come on, princess. Levitate!"
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By Blogger Joe, at 10:45 AM  

Hang in there, Maggie. It's rough moving so far away from everything familiar.

Nice description of the Village Fest...that was a highlight of my trip - murder, mayhem and hookers included...    

By Blogger Melvinator, at 10:26 AM  

Sweet Maggie.
I feel awful that you are in such pain. Suggestion: For every painful thought send up a prayer. Every painful breath you draw send up a prayer. Pray to God for peace and healing. Read His comforting words (Psalm 25 is a good start). The pain will levitate soon enough. I promise. Give my best to Jason. You guys are in my prayers.    

By Blogger Kyle G, at 6:48 PM  

You know we all can't wait to fly the friendly skies of Palm Springs with you soon!

Although the weight of the accident pulls down, I don't think anyone I have ever met could have lifted himself up with as much grace as Jay has. I'm sure you've been an invaluable source of his diligence.    

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