“365 Days of Mindfulness” [Day 58] Dragons and Princesses…

“Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.”
Rainer Maria Rilke
Letters to a Young Poet

It is a time of dragons and princesses. As I start this business I am facing every dragon that has chased me through my life, my nightmares, terror-filled days, and self-doubt. A lifetime of being told that I was not good enough, knowing that I was damaged, and what most people thought of as “damaged beyond repair,” I have had little belief that I could move forward with the courage and the fortitude that I needed. But right now, just short of sixty, I no longer have a choice, and that is good. It is time that I turn toward the dragon and stroke it gently, love it, accept it, embrace it, and then open myself to the transformation. I think I’m ready. I know I’m ready. But… I am afraid.

I think the nightmares have been coming lately because I am facing down the last of the dragons, the last vestiges of not good enough, you will never make it, you are losing the war, and if I wake up terrified at least I wake up alive and able to go on another day, step by step, inch by inch, moment by moment.

I made it through another night. This wasn’t the night I would die at the end of the dream. I may be drenched with sweat, unable to breathe, but I made it out, each time. If I am tired now, bone weary, it is because I am facing the last battles, but last night something happened. In the dream I stopped running. In the dream I turned around and faced my “dragon” and stood my ground.

I did not realize, until later this afternoon, how significant that was, and I wondered why it felt familiar, and then I remembered the Rilke quote, part of it anyway, and when I looked it up to find the whole quote I was struck silent. I have never really loved myself until these last few years and it has been slow building. Even in this last year I have felt so shy… “No one will ever love me if I don’t lose this weight, no one will love me with a crookedy smile. No one will want to watch the videos I create for students because I am lopsided and cattywompus, and if I can’t do the videos I can’t teach, and if I can’t teach in a year or less I won’t be able to eat.” Those are the nightmares. Those are the dragons. That is the little girl who hid and cowered in corners.

I went inside myself and picked her up and carried her out. I kissed her gently and told her I loved her, and in that moment the dragon started to become less solid in my imagination. He is still there, but less frightening. Most of the time. Each night when I go to bed now it is as if I charge into the dream shouting, “Once more into the breech!” The last stages of facing down your fears are the hardest, they are the bits that hang on for dear life and you have to pry the claws one by one out of the side of the mountain, and you might get slashed and cut, you might die. Or that is the fear, but it hasn’t happened yet.

Just before Christmas my business mentor said something to me that shook me to my core. She has been working with me for 6 months and we have traveled a twisty turny path with many possibilities that seemed, at times, like the tangle of thorny vines that blocked the entrance to Sleeping Beauty’s castle. I wasn’t sure I would make my way through, and finally there was the breakthrough that solidified my understanding of what it is I am meant to do. I have decades of experience and training behind me in so many fields, and I have worked with many people as a healer and teacher and they have told me that their lives have been transformed. I have the talent, and the skills, and it is something I love with my whole heart and soul. I want to be of service. I want to help and heal and love and gently guide my students through the thickets, but…

What Rachna said was, “I want to see if you are afraid to make money.” My eyes grew wide. I was shocked that she would say such a thing, but I wondered if she was right.

I have, like many other artists and writers, teachers and healers, done really good work, things that I have been proud of, but I was never able to handle the business side of things. Now I have no choice. I think I am afraid to fail at the business side of things. It is positively overwhelming. I absolutely know that I can do the teaching and the healing, the writing and the art, but the dollars and cents of it all terrifies me. It is the final dragon. And the nightmares have been tearing me apart. They started after Rachna’s question but I am so glad that she posed it because it has been the catalyst to get over the final hump.

I’m okay. I can do this. I think I can. I’m almost sure I am. Oh my God here comes the dragon again.

I wake up. I sit up. I turn on the light and pick up a sleeping tiny pug and hold her against me. She nestles into me and I can feel her heart beating against mine. I begin to breathe, to focus. I count the bricks on the fireplace and breathe as I count each one. I am okay – one, I am okay – two, I am okay – three, I will MAKE it! – four, Oh God will I make it? – five, I will make it… And so it goes. Somewhere along the line last night, before I got to the end of my brick counting, I reached up, turned off the light, and slipped back down into the covers with tiny Delilah asleep against me. Like a little girl with her doll I went to sleep with her in my arms.

Today I am better than yesterday, tired but not so tired. I didn’t need a nap, I got more work done, and tonight I am finally going to get the page together to begin my mentoring. It is very important to me, and I know that I can help people, and it is that very knowledge that propels me forward.

Last night, just before bed, I drew three oracle cards and the message was beautiful. It is one of my favorite decks and I have a lot of them. I have most of the decks Doreen Virtue has created. This one is Magical Unicorns. The question I asked was: “What do I need to know about this situation?” The three cards I drew were:

Hello and Good-bye: “You’ll soon see that this change will make things better.”

Whoa. I am always blown away by how accurate the cards are, as related to whatever question you ask.

The second card:

Healer: “You have the power to help and heal others.”

I literally gasped. My eyes got wide as saucers. There was something fluttering in my stomach.

The third card:

Simplicity: “Put your energy into the basics, and let go of excess.”

BAM!

My shorthand version of this reading: You can do this, the change is coming, you are about to turn the corner, you can help and heal others, and here’s how you do it…

The last part was the most important part because this page I need to create I have started countless times. “What do I include? Should I say this, should I say that, am I charging the right amount, how should the page look?…” and it got so elaborate in my mind I would just crash, so afraid to do it wrong I couldn’t get started at all.

Simplicity. KAPOW!

I have been trying too hard. I have been so afraid to be “Not enough,” (the dragon speaking through the mists of my mind) that I was just trying to build it up into something huge. But simplicity is the key. Before I go to bed tonight I will have the basic page ready. It will probably need some tweaking over the next couple of days but it will be up Sunday night or Monday morning. And when it does I believe the dragonfly will disappear, will fade away.

I am enough, I am good at what I do, I have a heart so full of love it is like a waterfall spilling out into the world across the land. I am good. I can do this. Oh my God, I am good.

I am sitting here breathless as though in the writing of this post I have run a marathon. Oh. Oh my.

No Rachna, I am not afraid to make money.

I can love the dragon for the lessons he came to teach and as he dissolved into the mists that frightened little girl found the Princess inside. It is the Goddess inside every woman. It is a Grail Quest to find her, to greet her, to embrace her, to love her, to become her.

I fall to my knees in tears. I am home.

Thank you Rachna. This weekend I am clearing the last of the vines away. The gates to the castle are opening. I am trembling, but inside I am strong, so much stronger than I ever knew.

Once more into the breech, but this time the breech is a page on this website that I will create. I am ready. My God, I am ready…

Make this the year your resolutions come true!

Make this the year your resolutions come true!

Comments

  1. Maitri–I choose a word every year, a word I need to sit with, meditate with, and learn. This year-my word is worthy…it is something I’ve needed to learn my whole life. Your post tonight really struck a chord, especially about being afraid (worthy) to make money with something that is so entwined with your soul. Thank you for being such a beautiful and open soul. Whenever I read your posts, I feel like I’ve found some comfort, some compassion, understanding, and love. thank you for being wonderful you!
    light and love-amanda

  2. Amanda that is a wonderful word and I know I could do a lot of work around that word, and have!

    I’m so glad that the post spoke to you and thank you so very much for your very kind words, it touches me deeply, and blessings and love to you dearheart. Thank you so much for coming and I hope you come again soon.

    Maitri

  3. I too have my dragons. I realize I am afraid to succeed — what if it gets too big. What if I can’t do it all alone. My last business partnership was a true disaster. This year I have decided that I will build slowly and mindfully. I have never felt worthy of charging very much for my work. No more. My work is worth just as much as the next guy’s. It will be a good year. Thank you Maitri for giving me a new tool. This mindfullness is magical. This year I will take care of me and leave some time for fun. Big goals, but with a good support system, a great hubby and some very special friends, I will make it. I haven’t felt this confident in a long time. Thanks for being a guide.

  4. Sweet Paula, you will, indeed, make it…

    We could have all along, you know, it was there, but we had to grow from the inside out, not the reverse. I am ready, I know I am. I also know that I will get scared, but I know that I have the tools to move past it, time and time again. If you’re not afraid, you’re not alive. If what you’re doing doesn’t scare you, at least a little, not in a bad way but in that way where you are growing into uncharted territory, then you are not yet doing your soul’s work, the work that you were meant to do. And it needn’t be something grand, or it might. Finding out what you need to do, knowing it deep inside, that’s where the power is.

    Now, this is the year for miracles. I know it will be true in my life. Believe it, act on it, even little by little, and you’ll be less afraid all the time. THAT has been a huge lesson for me, not “I’ll do it when I’m not afraid,” because that day will never come, but you will be less and less afraid when you keep moving forward. One day, one step, one moment at a time. That’s all we ever have, and all we will ever have.

    Remember that, we always only have one moment, and we can always handle this one moment at a time, come what may.

    Blessings and love dearheart,

    Maitri

  5. I am battling my depression dragon lately…he usually appears after my anxiety dragon is gone. They give me the old one two punch and I am left feeling like I can’t get out of bed. Of course, I make it worse by inviting depression to my pity party, which only prolongs his visit. Then, to top it all off, the self loathing dragon takes up residence, making it a trifecta of pain. Dragons three, Donna zero. I know this will pass, but I get so tired fighting them off. Maybe I will try to just acknowledge them, see them for what they are, and just “hang out” with them a bit. They just may lose their fire…who knows? Sending you love and hugs….

  6. Oh Donna honey I know this so well, but I have something for you to try. Now I want you to really throw yourself into this because it works. I have done this with hundreds of students. In fact I have been working on a little eBook to send to my list about just this. Synchronicity ROCKS!!!!

    Stop fighting them. Don’t fight your depression, your anxiety, your self-loathing, your fear. Poor things, all they went is an honest to God, all out, rockin’, rollin’ PITY PARTY.

    Plan a party. Invite them all. Send them invitations. I’m serious. You can make them or you can actually buy party invitations (The $ store works just fine.)

    Buy streamers, buy candles, bake a cake (Or a cupcake, or buy one, but you have to have a wee candle for each of the emotions that is having it’s way with you.)

    Set the date. Saturday (Or whenever) the ________ we are going to have a party. Wear your finest, shout your loudest, you will be well fed, we will, dance and sing — or not. We can be droopy, we can cry, BUT, you have to get up and tell your story. Okay, well then I’ll write it for you.

    On Saturday (Or whenever, tomorrow, later today is fine) put it all out. You are allowing each of these emotions/feelings to have their say. But it has to be confined to ONE DAY. (When they know they have their one day and can be let out FULL TILT that day they will wait a little and you will be having fun planning the party anyway. Or at least you will DO it!) 🙂

    Sit with the candles, a cupcake, whatever you have, a lovely cup of tea, whatever strikes your fancy. Get your journal and pen or sit at your computer and greet them all like old friends for surely you have spent a lot of time with them. Invite them to the “microphone” one at a time and ask them…

    “Depression, why are you so sad?” and write it all out, everything, every little word, in the greatest detail. When you are finished put it’s candle in the cupcake, light it, and say “I have heard you and I understand. I am lighting this candle for you to let you know that I fully understand and want to release you from your prison, When I blow out the candle you will be able to leave. One-Two-Three PPPPOOOOOFFFFFFFFF BLOW-IT-OUT! See depression as a physical entity, a puff of smoke, a dark cloud, whatever physical form you can imagine and when you blow out the candle you blow it out the door. As it passes tell it to take care, lovingly send it parting blessings, you will have a party again when the gang all gathers, and do it. As often as you need to. Soon you will be having fewer and fewer parties because Depression will be heard, seen, celebrated, loved, and ALLOWED to go. And so will the rest of them. You will need a party now and again, but instead of curling up in a ball MAKE yourself plan the party.

    Invite each one of your guests to the microphone and let them have their say…

    Fear, why are you afraid?

    Anxiety, why are you so anxious?

    Self-Loathing, why do you hate yourself so?

    We spend so much time pushing these things down, closing our eyes to them, either trying to pretend they don’t exist or falling so deeply into one big amorphous blob of them all we really don’t know WHY we feel these things we just DO.

    After the party clean things up. Shake it out, take a walk, do something physical if you just walk up your staircase and back down one time. Or take the dog for a walk, or give the kitty a treat. Now sit down with me and take a deep breath. Let’s breathe…

    Right this very moment you have had one of the most incredible parties of your life. Keep breathing, keep being very present, remember what they said but don’t attach to them, and if one comes up briefly have a mini party with that one, sit with it, ask it to tell it’s story, light a candle and sit with it a minute, breathe with it, bless it and let it go.

    Try that now love, and then come back and tell me how your party went! I expect to see streamers hanging out of your hair and glitter on your nose. It will have been a RIGHTEOUS party!

    Now, let’s carry on, shall we?

    I love you. I truly do.

    Maitri

  7. Donna, I have to thank you! 🙂

    I have this eBook nearly done but after I wrote this to you I thought about it. I think a whole lot more people than would receive the eBook need to hear this so I am going to transfer it over to today’s post with some extras that are in Word for the eBook. You are an inspiration. You have helped me move forward with something I have been sitting on for weeks and in doing so I think you will help more people than you could possibly imagine.

    So my love, thank you, and bless you. Wait a minute, you don’t still have your party hat on, do you? 😉

    Maitri

  8. Thanks so much dearest Maitri! I just read your posts and I am going to party with my darling feelings tomorrow! It sounds delightful and silly enough to work. Heck I’ve tried everything else, including numbing myself in unhealthy ways. I will follow your instructions and report back tomorrow evening…I am actually getting excited (in a good way) about my party plans! Thank you for your compassionate, loving guidance…sending you lots of love and hugs!

  9. Darling Donna,

    I expect a full report and you needn’t clean up, it’s okay if you show up with streamers still in your hair… 🙂

    Love,

    Maitri

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