The other night my g-baby Adelaide and I were walking when we came upon a dragon.
Adelaide’s three so she’s a lot braver than I am.
“Come back here, G-Mom and don’t look so scared. It’s not real.” (more like “wheel”)
“How do you know it’s not real?” I whispered.
“Because I said so.” And off she trundled to prove it, slapping a hand on it to feel for a pulse. “See, no heart. It’s just made of stone.”
I chuckled and snapped a photo with my phone, but later, I thought about what Adelaide had said. I even did a little research and found that dragons have been around since the beginning. The Old Testament specifically mentions dragons 21 times—both sea and field dragons. Does that mean real fire-breathing beasts existed?
Historians speculate they were actually dinosaurs, but the word didn’t exist—all they had was the Greek drakon (serpent) or the Latin draconem (long snake).
None of that info is very useful. What counts here is that if we equate dragons with danger and adversity, then we’ve all slain dragons.
But I’ve come to the point in my life when I’m tired of being defined by what I’ve survived or even what I’ve accomplished. I’m grateful to my past, but I no longer want to live in it.
Yes, I’ve learned lessons and I bear scars from my experiences, but I feel like every time someone defines me by my past a downed dragon is resurrected to strike again.
The time has come to slay the beasts once and for all, and to move forward. One of the benefits of my brain studies is that I now know it’s possible to reprogram our thinking. A change in thought can create neuropathways that that gives us a renewed sense of confidence and a healthier identity.
For me it means believing that I’m more than a survivor. I’m an adventurer. I’m a visionary.
So are you.
Understand that you have evolved from all of your experiences, every person you’ve met, every challenge you’ve overcome and every defeat you’ve endured, but you are more than those things. You are hope for today and faith for tomorrow.
Say out loud, “I was…”
There’s a weakness to it.
Now say, “I am…”
Two words never formed a more powerful de facto statement.
Now say aloud, “I will be…”
A combination of the three is a complete definition of who you truly are. Let’s refuse to be defined by only what we conquered long ago. Let’s live today to its fullest. Let’s evolve with the unfolding of the day.
This morning I’ll take my own advice. I’ll take Adelaide by the hand and head back out into her jungle where dragons are only as real and as powerful as we decide they are.