This Is Why Being Stuck Is a Bad Idea
This morning, Witchy rapped on my cottage door before spinning her way into my kitchen, as she does so often. And I’m so glad she does; she lights up my life like no one else.
I feel blessed to have met her on a walk in the woods one day. It wasn’t long after she and her beloved cauldron, Enchantra, had arrived here in England. The two of them had been trudging across Europe for some time after the awful incidents that made her leave the Transylvania Forest, her “pinhead” now-ex-boyfriend, Vladimir the 712-year-old vampire, and everything familiar.
She’s come a long way since then but she’s still got a lot to learn about life outside the Forest.
Today brought another thought-provoking moment for my favourite little blue witch.
“I got a postcard from my Inuit penpal this morning!” she squealed, waving it in the air like a tiny flag.
“That’s great, Witchy! How is he?”
“I’m not sure. I think he got stuck.”
“Yes. On the ice. He was there too long.”
“Yeah, that’s not good. If we stay stuck in one place too long, things start to go wrong.”
“What do you mean? What things?”
“Well, lots of things, Witchy. If we don’t move, nothing changes.”
“That would be just fine with me! I’ve had too many changes already!”
“I know you have, and it hasn’t been easy. But what if you hadn’t left the Forest? What if you’d stayed stuck there where you were so unhappy?”
Witchy was silent for a moment, nodding thoughtfully. “I guess that would have been worse than leaving.”
“In what ways?”
“Pretty much every way. After I had to become vegan and my spells were going wonky without eye of newt and all that stuff…well, you know what happened. Everyone was so mean to me, laughing at me, and I was so humiliated.”
“They were certainly lacking in compassion and kindness.”
“Is that what people call the art of British understatement?”
“Yes, Witchy, it is.”
“I think you learned that one pretty well.”
“If I had stayed there, my life would have become terribly small. I had nothing but my little cottage and Enchantra.”
“You outgrew your home, Witchy.”
“No, there was still plenty of room in my cottage.”
“That’s not what I mean.”
Sighing, she rolled her eyes in exasperation. “English is so dumb.”
“I mean, you were growing on the inside. You were changing. The pain and discomfort in your situation forced you to expand your thinking and to be ready for new experiences.”
“I see. That makes sense.”
“You outgrew your friends who just wanted to stay the same for several more centuries. They were never going to learn anything from what happened to you. They were never going to open themselves up to seeing another perspective or becoming kinder or better than they were before — well, before all the bad stuff happened.”
“No. I suppose they weren’t. I hadn’t thought of it like that before.”
“They were happy to stay stuck as they were. They chose to stay frozen in one place, just like your Inuit friend. They would never grow or be different. There was nothing for you there anymore, Witchy dear,” I added softly.
“I tried to stay. I tried to make it work. But they were just so mean.”
“Sometimes that’s how Life works. When it’s time for us to move on and grow into the next chapter, things start to get uncomfortable. We have a choice, then. We can either decide to live with the discomfort — which sounds terrible to me — or we can try to get away from it and create something different, something new.”
“But it’s so scary when we don’t know what that will be!” she exclaimed. “It had to get really bad in the Forest before I couldn’t stand it anymore. I was so afraid of what I would find outside the Forest. I’d never left it in all my centuries there!”
“You were so brave, Witchy.”
“No! I was terrified!”
“I know, but that’s what bravery is.”
“Uh…I don’t know what you mean. I’m never going to get the hang of English!”
“You’re doing great with it, Witchy. What I mean is that being brave has nothing to do with being fearless. It means having a fear of something but doing it anyway.”
“Yes, you were very brave to leave everything familiar and set out on a scary new adventure. And look how it turned out!”
“It’s been hard, that’s for sure. But I’m so glad I did it because there have also been lots of good things in it, too.”
“Well, that’s just life, Witchy.”
“Yes. It sure is.”
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