Ohhhhhh the youthful impetuous days of …my 40’s.
I was a…well….the polite word would be….serial monogamist ( and to my children, you have been warned….you need to stop reading now….this means you Noah James!!)
(He’s 24…he knows he should heed my warning. He’s been down this road in which his mother tells the god’s honest truth about what her life was like when she was an insane, misplaced, suburban ex-housewife…and sex fiend) Again…last Warning, Noah.
So, yes, the polite word would be serial monogamast…the other word would be hot mess, sex crazed 40 something woman who partied hard and loved harder.
I was a sight to behold.
But, I digress.
I had this problem, you see, with people who told me the truth about themselves;
I didn’t believe them.
Seriously. I was pretty sure they didn’t know what they were talking about and that my love would change them.
Or maybe they were just kidding.
So…when I spent AN ADDITIONAL YEAR with a man who told me that he wasn’t boyfriend material…you can imagine the absolute heartbreak when I realized that, indeed, he WAS NOT Boyfriend material…he was also not being boyfriend material with several other women. I didn’t find that bit out until later. At this point where I wrote the blog, I was trying very hard to be level headed. I had realized that we were not destined to be together, that I, in fact could not heal his wounds or make him love me the way I wanted….needed…CRAVED TO MY VERY BONES.
Well, because let’s be honest. I know this really clearly NOW…but I didn’t realize then, that no one could love me the way I wanted until I loved myself that way.
I still vividly remember how absolutely comatose and heartbroken I really was right before I wrote this blog. My best friend Shaunna and her husband literally, guided me and pulled me around the hardware store as I mourned this loss. I was inconsolable.
And so…having passed through the rough bits with the help of my friends and spending about $1200 at that hardware store, I finally healed and I wrote this story.
I think given the context of the above, you may understand the underlying story.
And if you seriously get it…every word, then perhaps we should talk…
I give you, The Damsel and the Dragon
The Damsel & The Dragon
Once upon a time, there was a damsel who lived by herself in the forest. The damsel was beautiful and kind, but also very shy. She wanted to meet a knight and fell in love, but couldn’t seem to find a way to even say hello. The damsel knew that she had great healing powers, but she thought it just wouldn’t matter to anyone and so she felt very, very alone.
One day, as the damsel was wandering through the forest, she came upon a tiny dragon. As all dragons do, this dragon had great magic and the damsel was impressed by her power. She scooped up the dragon and took it home. The damsel picked up a copy of “Dragons for Dummies” at her local book store and started reading about the proper care and feeding of her new pet.
Soon the damsel noticed tha thte knights from the surrounding areas were fascinated by the dragon. They saw her beauty and power and fell instantly in love with her. The dragon, being a dragon, loved to have playthings and so would spend her nights teasing and tormenting the knights. In the mornings, the damsel would heal their wounds and treat them with kindness. The knights grew to care for the damsel, some even loved er…but she thought, more than anything, they wanted to play with the dragon.
Some knights proved an unworthy plaything for the dragon and she would tell the damsel “send him away, he bores me” or “send him away, he has no talent for playing”. The damsel would gently and lovingly do as te dragon asked and found a way to tell the knight that his healing was done and it was time for him to go out into the world to seek new adventure.
The damsel loved the dragon, but sometimes the dragon would get her into trouble. The dragon would do something naughty while the damsel was asleep and she would wake up the next morning and cry “dragon what have you done??” The dragon would shrug and say “I was just having fun, but you’re the damsel and I’m your dragon, you’re going to need to clean up my mess”. The damsel would sigh and set about cleaning up the mess that the dragon had made as she said “next time, dragon, you have to be more careful…you can’t play like this, you naughty dragon and by the way, I am really tired of cleaning up your messes”
But surely as the night turns into day, the damsel would become lonely again and decide that perhaps she could let the dragon out to play for a little while, perhaps this time the dragon would bring her a knight who was worthy of her love, who would notice and care for the damsel and keep the dragon satisfied. After all…how could she be blamed for what the dragon did? She was just a damsel and the dragon was hard to control. The damsel found it difficult to deny the dragon anything that she wanted.
One day, a fierce and powerful knight came to the damsel’s door. The dragon had seen the knight and had decided that he wasn’t really dragon material. The knight explained to the damsel that he had a secret talent for taming and embracing dragons and perhaps she should let him try. He said “Say yes, damsel, you won’t be sorry” The damsel looked at the dragon who had been listening…the dragon seemed intrigued and the knight seemed so kind and intelligent, that the damsel let the dragon out to play.
The knight was indeed a worthy playmate for the dragon and she fell in love. The damsel noticed that the knight had many scars from his previous battles and treated him kindly. Soon the damsel fell in love with the knight as well. The knight enjoyed teasing and playing with the dragon, but the damsel scared him. The damsel patiently and calmly dressed the knight’s wounds, she gave him anything that he asked for and helped him grow strong. Soon the knight found that he loved the damsel as much as the dragon.
The dragon loved the knight so much that she could not get enough of his attention and wanted to be with him always. But the damsel saw that life in the forest did not suit the knight. She realized that he had other battles to fight that would carry him down a different road than the one on which she lived. She knew it was time for him to leave. The dragon begged and pleaded with the damsel to let him stay, but the damsel was firm. She loved the knight enough to let him go. She had gathered enough strength from her time as a healer and mess cleaner to finally tell the dragon no.
The dragon was angry and turned on the damsel, she was filled with fury and despair. The damsel knew it was for the best and tried to comfort the dragon, but the dragon was heartbroken and cried and cried for days.
The damsel cried with the dragon, but lovingly told her. “Dragon it is time for you to heal too…your heart is broken, I know. But Dragon, I don’t think you should choose our knights anymore…it hurts both of us too much. I know you just want to have fun, and I do so enjoy watching you get into some very entertaining situations, but I’m tired of cleaning up your messes and I’m tired of our hearts getting broken. I think, Dragon, that it’s time for me to choose our knight”
The damsel knew that in order for the dragon to be happy, the damsel had to be happy. She knew that she could make better choices than the dragon…and she knew that she no longer needed the dragon to find knights for her. As she had become an accomplished healer, her confidence had grown. She realized that although the knights that she had healed could no longer play with the dragon, they still loved the damsel and the damsel loved them too. She saw how she had helped them and she realized that she, by herself was worthy of love.
“Dragon” the damsel said “I love you, and because I love you, it is I who will do the protecting and guiding from now on. When I have found a knight who is worthy, I will let you out to play. I know just the kind of knight we are looking for and I will find him…and you will have to be patient”
The dragon was sad, but she knew the damsel was right. She knew that she had become too powerful and had made the damsel cry. She knew it was time for her to let the damsel lead, for the damsel had great wisdom from cleaning up so many messes.
“But damsel…can’t I just…”
“No dragon, you go lay down and heal yourself for a while. If you need love, I will love you. If you need protecting, I will protect you. You must rely on me now and I will care for you. When I am ready, I will share you with a knight who has shown me he is worthy of both of us”
The dragon started to pout…but then the damsel said “Just think how surprised the knight will be to find that such a fair and kind damsel has a dragon like you.”
“A surprise?” said the dragon “I get to be a surprise?”
“Yes, dragon…won’t that be fun?”
The dragon thought for a moment. She considered how much fun it would be to jump out at a knight and knock him over, she thought about what fun it would be to have a knight who would stick around for a while and love the damsel too. She realized that maybe the damsel was right; maybe she should try to wait and let the damsel find the knight.
The dragon yawned and lay down. She needed her rest for she had been a very busy dragon indeed. Yes, she would let the damsel choose the knight, she would trust the damsel. As she drifted off to sleep, she imagined the look of joy and surprise on the knight’s face when he realized his damsel kept a pet dragon.
“Dragons for Dummies”….I love that line!
It amazes me, that I really got it…I understood and could see the situation from 1000 feet up! It didn’t last very long…but at least there is a moment that I can point to!
What I know now, is that pain is a funny thing. We tell ourselves that we can take it but sometimes we can only take it for so long. And we have these incredible “a-ha” moments in which things become clear…only to find that something else comes along and slaps us upside the head and our clarity vanishes. We think we can’t bear that “one more thing” and so our defenses kick in and come to our rescue.
And that is our damsel/dragon moment in which the damsel falls asleep and the dragon goes off and makes a mess. My damsel had it going on! She was strong, she made wise choices, she helped others to heal…but something inside of her would inevitably decide that it wasn’t enough, and out would come the Dragon, or Party Starr. And let me tell you, you really don’t want the Dragon and Party Starr in the same room together…havoc is guaranteed to ensue!!!
I am really glad to have lived to tell the tale. And it DID have a happy ending…but there was much more drama to ensue before I got there.
The good news is…I survived that too…and only had to have one more divorce a bit more heartache, a bankruptcy….and a lot more Dragon-type shenanigans before I finally figured out the right combination of loving myself with just a touch of Dragon thrown in.
But that is another tale…