there is a practice i find very useful in working with my fears, when i remember to do it. it's from the book feeding your demons by tsultrim allione.
atlas was having health troubles over the weekend - it is likely that he is developing an intolerance to the one food he can eat - so i was feeling very sad and discouraged. during my process of working with my sadness and discouragement, i remembered the practice, and felt strangely moved to share the result.
i ask to see the fear of losing atlas.
i see a tall stick figure. it's a bird with beady eyes and a giant beak. it might have wings but it is really hard to tell, possibly because the wings are just sticks dragging from the shoulders. the image looks awfully familiar. (now, as I write this, i think i know what it is. it looks like my memory of the drawing of that creature in the last book in the lion, the witch, and the wardrobe series - that creature that comes into the barn where they keep the donkey that they're pretending is a god and picks up the people and carries them away.)
i ask the fear what it wants, what it needs, and how it would feel if it got what it needed.
i change places. as the fear, i answer my questions.
i want to grab atlas and squeeze him tighter and tighter and never let him go. i want to keep him with me forever. i want to always be as happy as i was in that moment when lisa opened the door and i saw his happy face through the screen door and fell in love.
i need you to treat yourself with love and kindness. i need you to know that you are worthy of both, to know that you are worthy no matter what, to realize your inherent value. i am afraid that without something external that reminds you that you are loved no matter what, you will forget, and things will go back to the way they were before. i am afraid that you won't remember any of this without atlas here to remind you.
if i get what i need, i will feel safety and relief.
i change places.
i ask to transform myself into safety and relief. i see myself whooshing - like a genie going into a bottle - into a tall coke glass full of liquid with a bendable straw in it.
the fear drinks the liquid. (surprisingly, it has no trouble sipping from a straw with its beak.)
as it drinks, it begins to fill with color. by the time the glass is empty, the fear has transformed into a beautiful iridescent blue peacock.
i ask the peacock how it can help me.
i change places. as the peacock, i answer my questions.
i am here to help you remember your inherent beauty and radiance and worth and value. i am here to help you remember that everything you need is inside you. it lives in your heart. you are learning to access it. atlas is in your heart, and he will live there forever. you no longer need something external to remind you that you are worthy.
i can help you remember this by allowing your eye to catch the sparkle of sunlight on the wet grasses and flowers. when you see that sparkle, you will remember my message.
if you need to access me, put your hand on your heart and follow the sunshine. there is sunshine every day. you are learning to find it.
i change places and sit with all of this.