I have learnt an important lesson, regarding the power of my mind. It excels at terrifying me, leading me to envisage catastrophic explosions. A teacher had invited my daughter and myself along to a festival, to take part in a parade. We would be walking with the Scottish group. I used to do Scottish dancing, and my husband and I both have Scottish heritage (our clans were mortal enemies). This teacher is incredibly passionate and creative. I gasped when I saw her classroom. Every available space-including the ceiling,was taken up with art. Colour and shape, movement and whimsy. Recently, floor space had been taken over by costumes.
She had borrowed quite a few from celebrated dancers, and the kilts were valued in the thousands. I went for a fitting for my wench outfit weeks ago, at the same time my daughter was fitted for her dancer outfit. I lovingly put my dress up and got on with life. Several nights ago, I sat bolt upright with a horrible thought. Where was my daughter’s outfit? Where the bloody hell did I put it? Mine was staring at me, but I couldn’t for the life of me recall where hers was. Oh my God! Catastrophe! My daughter wouldn’t be able to march. Everyone would be bitterly disappointed in me, and the worst part? They would be angry. I was awake throughout the night, worried that I would incur wrath the next morning. I couldn’t find my daughter’s outfit anywhere. I went into school after having turned out every bag I own, every wardrobe and drawer. My friend greeted me and reminded me that the kid’s outfits were ready to be picked up. You mean to say, I didn’t take it home with me? I could have kissed her! All that panic, for nothing. I am a confident and capable adult, but when I am faced with confrontation, and possibly anger, I become a child. I was never allowed to be angry, and if I disappointed anyone as a little girl, their rage didn’t bear thinking about. It’s exhausting trying to make everyone happy, tiptoeing around danger, afraid of letting anyone down. I still have work to do. There are parts of my psyche that need to be gathered and strengthened. I learnt that the adult needs to reassure this kid, and find solutions. She retreated. The threat of anger was just too much. Healing is like an onion, and you peel back one layer, to be presented with many more. It was a wonderful parade.