Sept 3, already the light is changing, moods are changing, feelings are changing… Grief is finding its way into the world of folks as anniversaries reveal themselves, as sudden upsurges of grief arrive like a dragon throwing flames out of nowhere it seems… Perhaps we’ve all heard about the “elephant in the room” stories. It’s there but no one talks about it, as it gets bigger and bigger, folks walk around it, tip toes around it, that elephant continues to get bigger… it bangs around moving the furniture, yet folks get smaller get tighter, more uncomfortable yet still unwilling to talk about the things or person they are missing or grieving, feeling more isolated in their heart and thoughts, while that elephant of old continues to make them feel uncomfortable.
It may be more like a dragon when you think of it, something so large, often feared with a fire that is hot, that is feared and one that is to be avoided at all costs… the dragon and the fire of grief that often comes from nowhere and leaves us feeling the burn while we are running like hell to get out of its path. The dragon is intimidating to many, has been given a fearful role with its roaring flames of fire… grief can be that way in many ways. Yet to tame the dragon is often the same as taming the pain of grief, once we know how to walk with it, once we “sit with it”, once we find a therapist, a professional if needed to walk or serve as a guide in times of pain, loss, trauma, mourning as we work through it. I’ve always said, and will continue to … therapists are a lot like shoes; they are not one size fits all. A person needs to find the right fit in order to benefit greatly from the work during time of learning, of processing, or moving through personal issues that bring them to the door. It takes great courage to ask for the help of another through times like that.
Just as we look to the dragon at times with such feelings of fear, of feeling small, and fear of being burned or eaten alive by its power… we must shield well at times with those we need to trust with our pain of loss or transitions in life. We must find a way to move it through us in order for it not to get stuck within and becoming a place of darkness. When that dragon jumps in or out of seemingly nowhere it is helpful to either fight, or to make friends… or to shield well in order to not feel the heat. Dragon can come to aide us or may in fact be those who want us to return to who we were before death, transition, trouble entered our lives and changed us forever more… and oh boy will we need to shield well from that fire!
YOU can do that, if you are aware of how, of your own strength, power, reserves and have been working to take best care of you. Those are the times when it is best to have worked with someone in the helping professions that can guide you along in empowerment, or that you have a trusted friend/relative who stands strong in their belief of you, while you regain your core strength. It is not easy, but you are worth it!
Perceptions change, people change, seasons change… Dragons can be strong totems of joyous strength or they can be something to fear. It is up to each person their take on things, whether to choose to grab a dragon by the tail, to get eye to eye with one and talk it through, or to be consumed by the flames. Makes it rather difficult doesn’t it? So many choices, and only one person gets to make the choice, that one person is the person going to it, through it, or learning to live beyond it. To stay where they are which is often a dark place, a sad place, a place that is like a tape playing over and over again… or to move into the light, the colors of life knowing that there will be times of profound missing, profound wishing that R.I.P. meant Return If Possible.
It just may be that dragon is one to get comfortable with, to embrace for its symbolism and to welcome when those fires of grief come as bold as the fire of dragon does. After all, dragon symbolizes many things including the fact that it is the ultimate ruler of all elements; fire, water, wind, soil! Dragon can be a powerful ally in our daily effort to live our lives, to walk through grief and those sudden upsurges we all have experienced from time to time. When we feel the heat, thinking on dragon and its fire, we can find our way to make it a walk to restore ourselves, recognizing dragon as colorful as a new dimension. Upholding in our minds the potent qualities of the Dragon, knowing we must get eye to eye with the grief, the pain, which then will allow us to talk about what we are feeling, who or what we are missing, and then believe in our core selves that we are able to effectively live our lives with the honestly, courage, and strength of a peaceful warrior.Very much like dragon with our own fire to light our way through it! In that acknowledgement we may find that we are capable to get to where we need to be, in order to come eye to eye with our own dragon… to tame the dragon, to become one with it, in order to talk about it and soothe the fire within.