Thursday, October 23, 2014

Why I Love Captain Hook

From : Colorful Animation Expressions

At the tail end of last month's tale, (The Mermaid's Secret : Diving For Hidden Treasure) I asked if pirates led me to sunken treasure. This seems like a contradiction. Pirates grab the gold, they don’t lead others to it. But they might. Consider Hook.

As we continue to skirt the watery edges of  Neverland, we see the dark pirate ship ahead where the evil Captain Hook lurks. As villains go, Hook is a fairly sympathetic, and even lovable, character. He is handsome, intelligent, charming, adventurous, and extraordinarily courageous (except, understandably, where crocodiles are concerned). Sure, he’s a duplicitous, cold blooded killer, but nobody’s perfect.

Hook’s role, like that of most villains, is to spur the protagonist to action. And in their responses to villainous threats, heroes and heroines face their (and our) fears, meet challenges, and ultimately triumph.

We need the bad guys both as literary devices and in our lives. They serve a vital purpose whether they are internal (yes, even your much maligned inner critic!), external, fiction or non.

My former husband (FH), who is not a killer and shares all of Captain Hook's best qualities plus many more, also at times shared his coldness and duplicity. He did not hook me into marrying him to suck me dry of my life force. He did not tie me to a mast, leaving me hungry for love and thirsting for the truth my soul needed, and he did not make me walk the plank into shark infested waters. Nonetheless, in the days following The Day My Life Changed Forever, I believed this to be true.

From: Colorful Animations

Although much vilified by my loyal support network (while I got to pretend to be virtuous by feebly defending him and secretly goading them to say more about what a cad he was), FH was far from despicable. I could fill many pages about what makes him sweet and lovable and his many kindnesses to me and others but I am highlighting his worst side (we all have our dark shadows), the extent of his betrayal (although I am not reporting all of the gory details) and how excruciating my pain was, so that those who are reluctant to forgive their villains can see what is possible.  His actions served to give me the courage to embark on an adventure that helped me grow stronger, wiser, more joyful and to live a magical new life.
As I look back on the time of our marriage I realize that far from being an innocent victim, I was a vicious criminal - towards myself. To a lesser extent, I also engaged in unkind behaviors towards FH that contributed towards his choices that I found so bewildering and undeserved.
It was convenient to make FH responsible for the ways in which my authentic self shrank and grew fainter and weaker while my joy diminished, but the truth is that his "dastardly crimes" of betrayal and lies paled in comparison to the betrayal and lies I perpetrated upon myself in the name of buying what looked like security but was actually a pirate's dungeon of my own creation.
If FH had remained faithful to me, I would have remained unfaithful to me. I shudder to think what state I would be in by now had he not given me the key to my prison and the map for the sunken treasure with his infidelity and dishonesty.
By forcing me to walk the plank, (well, actually I jumped ship) he saved us both from the piracy of having our true selves plundered on a daily basis.

AFP/ Getty Images / Joe Klamar

This month's new moon falls on a solar eclipse which is a similar story of how the sun is blocked by a cold shadow and then the light and warmth returns.

We go through many natural cycles of light and dark in our lives. We may blame others (the ancients believed a dragon was eating the sun at eclipses) for our dark times, but ultimately it is the story we tell ourselves and others that either leaves us miserable victims or helps us find power, beauty and gratitude even in the darkest days. 

The next time you see a skull and crossbones flag flying on a ship on the horizon or feel a hook pierce your heart, check to see if you had a role in hoisting that flag or embedding that hook. 

Although there are random events of violence beyond our control, usually we can take at least partial responsibility for our contribution (even if just by attracting someone who mirrors the unkind ways we treat ourselves). We can also look for the gifts in the situation and let go of blame. When we do so, we have the power to transform ourselves and even some of the dynamics of the painful event. 

I want to make it clear that I am not advocating that we should be passive in response to harm being done to us or that we should seek out difficulties in order to grow in our lives. We need to take appropriate actions to remove ourselves from situations where we are being mistreated and we certainly don't need to invite trouble. Challenging times arrive like the cycles of day and night or summer and winter. What I am saying is that trying to resist night or winter, rather than appreciating the time or season for what it is, is not only ridiculously futile, but causes more much more harm than the dark and cold.  

Letting your pirate off the hook will benefit both of you as well as all of the innocent bystanders and all whom all of you encounter. Even if you want to see him (or her) twist in the wind, know that you are twisting right along side of them. Why not set everyone free?!

If you would like some keys and maps to assist you in this process, contact me to see if Sparks & Leaps can add some magic and joy back to your life and/or the lives of your children.

Note to readers curious as to where all of this is going:

This blog has a life of it's own and usually surprises me. The basic premise of The New Moon Blog is about new beginnings, but of course, all new beginnings are preceded by endings. Apparently, I needed (hopefully for the readers benefit as much as mine) to spend some time re-creating (recreation = play!) the death and darkness of that time with all of these first posts and playing with the bones around this season of Halloween and The Day of the Dead. 

My plan (blog willing!), is to wrap this stage up and move on to Thanksgiving with my next post so I can let FH and his new wife rest in peace. Both are readers of this blog who are probably quite ready to have me quit rattling skeletons and leave this time behind! And although they have both heard me say this many times, just for the public record, I love them both and bless them daily!

I trust that the story of the flight to my new life with all of it's magical pixie dust will be better understood and appreciated with this foundation firmly planted in the depths. I also hope that readers who are currently experiencing the death throes of a part of their life will be able to relate and see glimmers of hope.

Preview of next month:

Who is your favorite villainess? Vote in the comment section below by telling me yours and I will try to fit her into next month's blog. Remember, you can sign in as anonymous by clicking on the box underneath your comment that says: COMMENT AS and you will see the bottom option is ANONYMOUS. Just click on that. You are welcome to tell me in your comment who you are or let me try and guess