Grace Notes

a blog about life’s everyday magic

February 16, 2017

Letting Neverland Nourish Your Soul

Letting Neverland Nourish Your Soul

Words: Elle Harris
Photo credit: Isabelle Dow


Whenever I find that I cannot understand the world as I feel I ought to – or whenever I find that I do … but wish that I didn’t, I decide that I want to escape, and always return to the same place.


Italian philosopher Umberto Eco once said, “To survive, you must tell stories.” I believe him, because every time life chooses to become overbearing, as life inordinately does, I return to the story of Neverland, and I let it nourish my soul as only a dose of agelessness and fairy dust can.


I’m not able to rightly distinguish the first time I realized the power of Peter Pan in my life, but I’m willing to believe it was somewhere in my adolescence … about the same time I realized I would not be young forever. Most children can’t wait to grow up, but I remember, even when I was very little, thinking to myself how I wished I could stay small, and that time was passing entirely too quickly for my liking. From then on, I knew Neverland was the answer.


J.M. Barrie, in his genius, recognized our need to be free … to exist (even for a short while) in a place where time stands still, and the currency of “happy thoughts” is all it costs to fly. Life tends to be slightly more complicated. We grow up and give up – we overwhelm ourselves with important tasks that force us to adopt all the adult behaviors we swore we’d never succumb to. In his novel, Barrie writes, “The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease forever to be able to do it.” When did you stop flying? When did I? I find it hard to believe that I would give myself permission to do so, and yet here I am … so grounded. A servant to my schedule, I find that play and pretend often seem so very far away, until I not only forget to fly, but to breathe as well.


Still … Neverland remains, waiting patiently with its pirates, mermaids, and fairies, all on the edge of my imagination, bookmarking itself for my eventual return. When I do find my way back, I dance in the forest with the lost boys, our bare feet matching the rhythm of tribal drums. I play hide-and-seek with the shadows cast by Tinkerbell’s luminescent flutter. In Neverland, I am the heroine of my own story, brandishing bravery and wielding my wild heart to the seasons that shift with Peter’s ever-changing moods.


In Neverland … I am free.


But just like Wendy, something always calls me back, and I must leave behind childhood once more – my solace the same as hers … that the memory of Neverland is enough to sustain me, and I only need to decide I want to be there, to return.


Jodi Lynn Anderson, author of Tiger Lily, brought light to this truth of mine, stating, “I like to think that one day after I die, at least one small particle of me … will float all the way up to Neverland … I like to think that nothing’s final … that you and I are always young in the woods, and that I’ll see you sometime again, even if it’s not with any kind of eyes I know of or understand.” And so when I miss someone – when I miss myself, it is to Neverland that I go, willingly stepping into childish reverie, into a place where forgetting all but the moment is the way of life.


To live with Neverland, to nourish our souls with glimpses of the second star, or first love, fairy dust, and waking dreams … that is to live life to the fullest extent of our imaginations.


12 Ways to Get Back to Neverland

* Wait for a clear night … the kind where fading twilight deepens to an inky curtain littered with stars. Look for the second to the right star, and wish on it with every childhood dream your memory carries.


* Read the original novel, Peter Pan, or look up quotes from J.M. Barrie and revel in the depth of his magic. Soak into quotes like, “You know that place between sleep and awake, that place where you can still remember dreaming? That’s where I will always love you; that’s where I will be waiting.” Rediscover the child who never grows up.


* Just as Peter’s emotions bring on different seasons, allow your own fancy to determine the season you wish it to be. Dress for spring in the winter, or honor your perpetual summer heart by banishing anything dark in your wardrobe.


* Find a quiet nook in your yard and create a fairy garden. Furnish it with delicate decor, garnish the space with all things tiny and inviting.


* Refuse to change the battery of a watch that has stopped ticking. Wear it with pride, spitefully allowing this small symbol to prove to the world that time doesn’t own you.


* Sprinkle a bit of “fairy dust” into your makeup regimen. Brighten your eyelids with a shimmer and twinkle befitting Tinkerbell herself.


* Settle into movie marathons mode and watch a series of Neverland inspired films. Immerse yourself in a world where pirates, mermaids, fairies, and lost boys become your very reality.


* Buy yourself a bouquet of Tiger Lilies. Let yourself get lost in their orange brilliance, and remember that wild is beautiful.


* On a bad day, when you’re feeling just a little wicked, imagine you’ve joined Hook’s crew on the Jolly Roger. Draft a list of potential pirate names that suit you.


* As J.M. Barrie once said, “Fairies have to be one thing or the other, because being so small they unfortunately have room for one feeling only at a time.” Think about your feelings one at a time. Let yourself feel in entirety – abandon logic and embrace emotion as a fairy … feel something fully, just this once.


* Find a place where time cannot find you. Close your eyes and take yourself to Neverland. Visualize who you are in the story … where you fit in. Are you a fairy? A lost boy? A native? A villain? Pan himself? Wendy? Where does your tale begin? Consent to a waking-dream.


* Peter once said, “To live will be an awfully big adventure.” Meditate on what really living means to you. Ask yourself whether or not you have been living the life of adventure you were meant to have. If so … keep chasing Neverland … if not, run until you remember how to fly.



Elle Harris is a believer of impossible things. She is a lover of words, wonder, and the whimsical delights of everyday living. Caught in the creative place between reality and imagination is her favorite place to be. Please join Elle in pursuing life with intention, and grand conversation on her blog Find Elle on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @ElleHarris82.


How do you nourish your soul with “a dose of agelessness and fairy dust?” Share with us in the comments.

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Comments ( 10 )

  1. 2.16.17 Please Visit and Share! | this quotable life

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    […] So I’m totally blessed to be a guest writer on “Bella Grace Magazine’s” blog, Grace Notes.  All about finding your own personal “Neverland,” this article is for anyone who needs a dose of defeating reality with just a little pinch of pixie dust.  I hope that you are able to visit and share. Letting Neverland Nourish Your Soul […]

  2. Tisa Hosford

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    Lovely post! (am still trying to think of a suitable pirate name….) One of the ways I ‘nourish my soul’ is by indulging freely in childhood memories—like when I was three years old and hiding with my dog behind her doghouse eating Milk Bone Dog Treats out of the box! Naughty but nice 🙂

  3. Valery Larson

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    Just because I pay my bills, doesn’t mean I have to grow up. Possibilities are endless if we are open to them. One grows older whether they think about it or not, so I choose to focus on the good. I live in the Redwoods where a special kind of fairy resides. One can find their handi-work tucked into many spots among the trees, one only has to stop and look.

  4. Elle Harris

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    I love this! Chase those memories relentlessly!

  5. Elle Harris

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    What a blessing to have daily proof of ancient magic surrounding you! Enjoy every moment!

  6. Carol Halesworth

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    Great Post thank you

  7. Elle Harris

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    I am so glad you found a bit of magic in it!
    Elle Harris

  8. Katia

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm

    The smile hasn’t left my face for the entire time that I spent reading this brilliant piece. Thank you, also, for including tips to get that little bit closer to Neverland. I often think of myself as whimsical and fairy-like, but then catch myself being the stern, strict adult and feel lost again, wondering when I became so unnecessarily serious. Thank you for this beautiful reminder. 🙂

  9. Elle Harris

    April 19, 2023 at 4:25 pm


    Thank you for your truth and vulnerability in getting caught up being an adult. I too do this, and then realize, I need my magical break! All it takes is faith and trust … you know the rest! Hugs darling! Carry on with wishes and dreams and all things that involve fairy dust!

  10. Sonjia Bradshaw

    April 19, 2023 at 4:26 pm

    This post needs to be revived! Sept 2021 is the perfect time to remember Neverland-magic! Yesterday, hubby and I hustled our 19 & 20 yr olds along with our little fido-friend into the truck. The coolness of early morning tingled with the first hint of fall. We drove to a park we’d never visited before and “adventured” together along walking paths and found a pebbled beach where we skipped rocks and played in the lake-waves. It was the perfect Neverland-morning all our souls were longing for. 🙂

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