Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Nannies and Dragons

I recently found myself thinking about Pete's Dragon--the Helen Reddy version movie of my childhood, in which a ridiculously cute animated dragon befriends a lonely young boy. By the end of the film, the boy has found a loving home, Helen Reddy has sung one of my all time favorites, "Candle On The Water," and the dragon has gone off to find another child who needs his help.

It's a familiar theme. At the end of Mary Poppins, the title character leaves the children in the able hands of their newly enlightened parents. Basically, the children in question just need a little help on their path, and once they are headed in the right direction, the magical helper, no longer so desperately needed, moves on to another mission.

Now, few of us have an animated dragon or a babysitter with a lamp-holding carpetbag to help us. We do, however, have friends and family, who often prop us up and guide us along. And, perhaps just as important, we have strategies we develop ourselves to make our paths clearer. 

For me, those strategies have included writing (thus, this blog), daily (often multiple times daily) emails with a coffee pal, and new perspectives from my kids. Do I ever find that I'm ready to let go of my Mary Poppins, or my Elliott the Dragon? Sometimes, perhaps. But just like those kids in the movies, I can't help but appreciate whatever makes the path a little easier and a lot friendlier. And unlike those kids in the movies, I have the power to hold on to the things that help me through the rough patches. I just have to split my focus between "within myself" and "in the world (or maybe the sky) nearby." And when looking for a little guidance, those are--with or without nannies and dragons--two pretty good places to find it.

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