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SEASONAL NOTES
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MEANING OF
FAIRY TALES

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ALADDIN
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THUMBELINA
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MAGIC OF THE NUTCRACKER
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RELATING
WITH HEART

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TENDER RELATING
delving in a small circle

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ART OF DIALOGUE
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MUSING ON
MUTUALITY

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Pleasant House

Geraldine's Adventures in Spain

or

How Reading Thumbelina Changed Geraldine's Life

 

Geraldine is feeling fed up. Despite living with Norman, and being an

assistant to a famous fashion designer, something is wrong. "And not only with

Norman." She muses to herself recalling not for the first time with some distaste

the way he likes to waddle self righteously across the living room floor in a

manner she finds altogether disgusting. It is as if he wants to proclaim his

right to his puffed up importance simply because he is a doctor and a man.

Nevertheless she manages to spend a full four years with him (how can she not

love a Doctor and a Man when he says that he loves her?) until things get so

desperate, and she gets so ill, that late one night she is rushed to the

hospital. Coming round from the anesthetic after they took out her appendix, she

realizes again that she is not happy. She cannot help but wonder if her

experience with her appendix is her bodies way of telling her something is missing,

and not just the end of her intestine!

 

Whilst she is in hospital three things happen to change her life. She sees

Norman waddle and strut his way across her room for the umpteenth time, she

sees a documentary about Southern Spain, and finding nothing remotely appealing

to read in the hospital shop bar a modern rendition of a Hans Christian

Andersen fairy tale, she begins to read Thumbelina.

 

How Reading Thumbelina Changes Geraldine's Life

 

Thumbelina as you may recall is small. No bigger than a thumb, she was born

inside a flower at the request of a woman, who unable to have children of her

own, went to a wise woman who gave her a seed, and told her to plant and

nurture it and discover what would be revealed. Which the woman did, and Thumbelina

was born.

 

Geraldine reading this in the somewhat bemused vulnerable state that follows

an operation finds it inspiring. Here is a woman who not only feels that

something is missing, she does something about it. She listens to her feelings

and intuition as they show themselves to her in the form of the Old Wise Woman

and does what they tell her to do: to nourish and treasure the seed of what

her soul is calling out for. It changes her life of course, as such calls from

the heart are likely to do, which may be why we resist them. We may be

scared of the changes they bring. Geraldine however despite feeling scared feels

stimulated to action. She decides to leave Norman (even though he insists

he does not want her to, despite his frequent affairs with other women. "They

after all don't really mean anything do they?" ). Nevertheless she insists

she can no longer live with one who does not really love her, but only seems

to love the elegant frame she can provide thanks to her excellent decorative

skills and her contacts from her job. However after an initial elation in

association with holding her ground, she instantly feels bleak.

 

Thumbelina Dreams of a Prince and Geraldine Decides to Act Like One

 

Returning to Thumbelina in hope of inspiration she reads that though

Thumbelina is happy she is also lonely. Her mother is so big. Thumbelina is so

small. She finds herself totally taken by images of fairies in books. Here she

finds something that is more able to reflect her tiny yet powerfully magical

and sensitive nature, than her big plump Mum, whose love though essential, is

not quite enough.

 

Thumbelina is yearning. She yearns for her Prince to come and rescue her from

being so alone, Of course this is not simply a longing for the Prince to

come from outside and rescue her (even if she might think that it is) It is also

a deeper longing for this facility within herself. She longs perhaps for

some aspect of her own soul that has not yet shone through. She longs to have

wings and to fly like the fairies.....To be more than she already is. Something

is missing.

 

Feeling a kinship with Thumbelina Geraldine finds herself thinking. "Maybe

the life I have been living though good, is not good enough? Maybe my job

though successful does not reflect enough of my magical and sensitive nature?

Maybe I don't get to dance and dream quite enough" She muses still reeling from

the after effects of the anesthetic and pain killing drugs. "Perhaps it is

time to be vulnerable rather than strong? Perhaps working out every day day at

my health club in the city is not quite the same as walking by the sea?"

Geraldine is full of longing. The only thing is, she does not know what for.

 

Pondering these questions she falls into a doze. When she awakes she finds

herself remembering that documentary about Spain. During afternoon tea and well

beyond supper and far into the night she hovers in a dream state in which

images of sparkling blue sea, golden hills hugged by shiny white pueblos,

bedecked with a plethora of flowers, in which women in flamenco dresses drifting

by fountains flanked by dark, mysterious, wildly attractive men, keep coming

to her. Speckled between these delightful scenes comes, every now and then

unbidden, a miserable memory of Norman. He certainly has nothing dark nor

hauntingly mysterious about him for all his dark tailored suits, pristine white

shirts, hand made black shoes, and burgundy silk ties - his one dash of colour.

 

And so feeling suddenly and deeply stirred she does a radical thing. She

will not, like Thumbelina, wait for a Prince to come and do something for her.

She will do something herself. Certainly she will no longer live with Norman.

She will move to Southern Spain. She will rent an apartment somewhere lovely

by the sea, take some well earned rest and relaxation and then "Well who

knows...?" She muses to herself. She will however be sure to take Thumbelina.

 

Thumbelina and Geraldine Fall in Love

 

As soon as Geraldine is recovered enough from her operation she busies

herself removing every trace of her life from her former home, whilst contacting

rental agents in Spain. A monstrous thing to get everything organized and

packed down. A painful thing too as too many memories keep flooding in. She is

determined however. She will not be deterred.Yet every now and then plaguing

thoughts enter her mind " Am I really doing this ? Am I mad? Will I regret? "

 

Whenever the doubts come she plays Gypsy Kings music and browses in books

about Spain and let herself dream - just like Thumbelina - or she keeps herself

busy with endless tasks, until finally full of anticipation and some

trepidation Geraldine sets off.

 

The first weeks are lovely. Andalucia is gorgeous. The apartment is welcoming

and, well equipped. The only thing is the water supply keeps being turned

off, and every now and then the lights go off as well. Nevertheless, the breeze

is soft, the nights are warm, the moon is huge, and the air is full of the

sweetest perfume. It is heady stuff. And sensual too. Geraldine immediately goes

out and buys a new wardrobe. Gone are the broad shouldered power suits with

short narrow skirts and shoes with high heals. In their place come huge swirling

skirts with ballerina blouses, open sandals and the look of the Gypsy. As for

her hair, it is left to flow free without lacquer. Those stiff little wisps

that had taken for ever to do with the hot tongs so as to frame her face to

perfection, that made her feel in control, soon were replaced by soft bouncy

tendrils that made her feel free.

 

Geraldine those first few weeks was in love. She loved that all businesses

and shops closed between 2 - 5 for siesta. She loved that here at last was time

to be, and since she had nothing to do anyway she did not mind - yet - if

things were frequently unpredictable or delayed, if saying"si" was really a way

of being friendly rather than an agreement to do something, and "manana" was

a way of saying " Not now. If it really proves essential, some time later -

maybe - we'll have to see."

 

Sitting on her balcony looking out over the ocean as the sun set beyond

purple hills slightly shrouded in mist, with a tall glass of sangria in her hand

and her skirts whirled about her, she feels inspired and for the first time in

ages returns to Thumbelina

 

Thumbelina if you remember is longing for her Prince. One night he comes.

Flying by her window on his way to a ball, the Fairy Prince sees Thumbelina and

finds her the most beautiful and alluring being, he ever has seen. He cannot

resist the call of her beauty. She seems so spontaneous and vulnerable yet so

deliciously alive. And so he comes. In the night of course. The seeds of the

most precious things are often found in the dark. Just as the wonder of

life is first conceived and nurtured in that dark secret womb place, so too

many wonderful treasures of soul are first conceived found and nurtured in the

dark secret places of the night, or the times when we disengage from the

everyday demands of the world about us.

 

These are the dream times, of drifting, of reaching in. These are the times

when by choice or force of illness or grief the unconscious roams free, to

sort its self out. To reorganize and heal. Times in which we cannot do but

only be. Though not always pleasant these times are essential. To deny the need

for them is to deny something precious about ourselves. Equally, without the

willingness to enter our grief in a deep loving respectful way, we can never be

healed. Without mourning our losses we can never fully regain our joy,

 

So the Fairy Prince comes in the night, at a time in which Thumbelina, like

Geraldine as she sits on her balcony with the misting hills behind her and

the darkening sea before her, can afford to let herself see with the soft un-

focused eye of intuition and feeling rather than with the sharp focussed eye

of thinking and percieving. And he serenades Thumbelina.

 

Thumbelina's Prince Returns Home and Geraldine Begins to Feel Restless

 

" Let me be your wings" he sings. How can she refuse? Climbing upon his back

she flies away with him for a wondrous night, Thumbelina and her Prince

however are not really ready for one another yet and so after a magical night he

takes her home and goes back to his parents. The beauty of love has been tasted

for a moment It will change Thumbelina's life as such moments do. And it

has been but a glimpse of what really can be. Thumbelina and her Fairy Prince

must both mature and come more into their own, before they, can come together

in a way that is true. In Thumbelina the fairy Prince must learn more about

honouring and following feelings and his own vulnerable childlike place. and

Thumbelina must learn more about the true strength of her feelings and her

ability to express and take action on her own behalf. Just perhaps as Geraldine

must, even though she does not yet know it.

 

Moving from one land to another is not simply to take a sweet sojourn in

some promising new place. It is also to travel down many long and often

unfamiliar avenues as practical adaptations to new environments, languages,

temperaments and ways of life are learned and understood. To move from ones country of

origin can be a gift, yet it is frequently not without its cost. And

changing the outer environment can sometimes also push us- into new inner

environments well as the world of feelings, emotions, ideas ,creative expression, love

and identity come up for question and possible review. So it is not always

easy. And it does not remain simple for Geraldine either.

 

Before too long she begins to feel bored. Suddenly the wonders of Spain no

longer seem quite so delightful. "Perhaps?" She wonders "It is time to go home?

There have been too many nights alone on the balcony recently" She reflects

to herself. "Too many sangrias. Too many conversations in bars with

indifferent people about indifferent things. Too many struggles trying to make myself

understood in Spanish. Too many endless hours waiting in line at the post office

and the bank. Too many days which have melted into each other with my

feeling lethargic and sad, spattered with nights of revelry which though exciting

do not make me happy. Like fizz on coca cola" Is her thought "Too much froth

and too little substance. Where is the meaning? "

 

And so she books a flight to return home for two weeks. But when she is there

she is not happy. Something has changed. Either she or her friends are not

quite the same. She no longer quite seems to fit. Their concerns no longer are

hers. A mournful moment this, in which she decides she better to back to

Spain. Her adventure there, is not yet complete, any more than is Thumbelina's. So

after only one week away she decides to go back. Several weeks after this not

knowing why, she wanders into a furniture store just to look around.

 

Thumbelina is Kidnapped and Geraldine Gets a Job

 

Falling into conversation with the proprietor an exceedingly dark mysterious

man by the name of Alfonso her innate design capabilities suddenly come to

light. When she spontaneously rearranges some cushions on a sofa Alfonso

gleans in a minute that here is a woman of gift and skill. When both sofa and

cushions are instantly sold, he promptly offers her a job. Which after a good meal

with fine wine Geraldine accepts. She is restless and bored after all. This

might be just what she needs? Soon she is busy beyond belief. So busy in fact

that when the Feria comes - the time for celebrating dance and good cheer when

every business closes at noon for a whole week so people can have time for

flamenco she does not even go. She finds it annoying. She has to work.

 

Geraldine is at first quite taken by the job She does very well. Encouraged

by Alfonso she starts to design her own cushions to coordinate in unique and

startling ways with his chairs, beds and sofas. His furniture (thanks to her

artistry) soon becomes like works of art. To own furniture from Alfonso's

becomes quite the thing. And he is so skilled He knows who to contact, and

how. when and where.. He knows how to charm, wheedle and cajole. O yes he knows

these things. He is good at them too. And he thinks Geraldine's work is just

fabulous. "There is nothing like it." He announces proudly one day as if he

has made all the cushions himself!

 

Left to her own devices Geraldine would not have gotten so far. No doubt

about it Alfonso is a boon. And yet......Something is wrong! She is not happy.

Something is missing! She is crotchety and cross.There is no time for loitering

on the terrace these days. Siesta time is no longer for her. When the store

closes she has to work on her designs. True she is very well paid, and now has a

wardrobe full of well cut suits with wide lapels, big buttons and braiding.

The skirts though short are not quite a narrow as they were before, and her hair

is still flowing freely. Nevertheless, the more she gets to know Alfonso the

more she realizes there is something manipulative and sneaky about him for all

his sauve ways. Not only that. he envies her and her success and calls it

love. O yes indeed. He wants to marry her! And keep her for himself. Feeling

flattered yet somehow oddly depressed Geraldine ponders her lot and turns yet

again to Thumbelina only to find Thumbelina has been kidnapped.

 

Thumbelina is Cajoled and Geraldine is Beguiled

 

Thumbelina like Geraldine is gifted. Thumbelina can sing. She has a

beautiful voice Others will attempt to make use it, to serve themselves. She is to be

used against herself to fulfill the needs of others - a theme to be

encountered many times in this story - perhaps because as a phenomenon it is quite

common. And it is abusive even when it is subtly done. Because it maims. It ruins

the ability to recognize and trust ones own soul. It destroys all that is

vulnerable, open, tender and soft and asks that we harden, or numb, or get spiky

and attackful in self defence.

 

Thumbelina as we have heard has been kidnapped. The toad and his mother have

taken her, enticed her to stay with promises of fame, fortune and love if

only she will sing. And sing she does - she loves singing you see. And famous

she becomes. Yet she is sad. The love she has yearned for is not to be found

here despite all the toads promise. Though she is tempted by glory that being

with the toads can bring her, she is to find that they of themselves cannot

replace that sense of real joy that can come when success is achieved through

being and doing what she loves, rather than from what others expect her to be.

Love is important, implying as it does a safe attractive dependability. Love of

this kind is not dangerous. It does not damage or thwart. To follow it brings

with it its own set of challenges it is true, as it asks that we let go of

that which is not in support of that love, . So it may not always be easy, but

it can be golden.

 

But love is not what is going on here. Thumbelina is cajoled. However her

yearning for love is leading her to discover all that exists within her that

could get in the way of her realizing her love. Certainly she is struggling with

the toads. Just as Geraldine is struggling with Alfonso.

 

What is going on? Is she finding that aspects of her personality that are

based on learning what others want her to be rather than the simple recognition

of what she is are making choices for her? Does Thumbalina see something in

the toad and his mother that reminds her of something she once saw in her own

mother and so she mistakenly sees them as offering love?

 

Are the toad and his mother attractive because they seem to be offering her

the possibility of expressing herself and being recognized in ways she has not

been before? They want her to sing and be famous after all, only trouble is

they want it because it will serve them. They do not care what the cost to poor

Thumbelina. They are not in love with her voice or even with her but with

the fruits she and it can bring them, They are not finding and connecting with

their own inner gifts, they are trying to use Thumbelina's instead.

 

Yet for a moment Thumbelina just like Geraldine is attracted and beguiled

before realization happens as to their real motivation - their real abuse. Is

she beguiled for in their presence and with their aid she experiences some

very high times, She has experienced moments in which her true potential - her

voice and her song - just like Geraldines exquisite cushion designs - have

shone through. But O at such a cost. The cost is every other aspect of her

soul.It is the destruction of her body and being. This relationship is like a drug

and Thumbelina for a moment might be addicted to the high of the possibility

of singing. Yet it is only an momentary high it is not the result of an

integrated life that is true in which her singing can be as well as the rest of her

soul. Her singing for the Toads becomes her only salvation - a way to escape

the bad feelings of a life that otherwise is abusive to her. So of course she

wants to sing. And Geraldine wants to sow cushions and never stop working even

for Feria

 

Thumbelina and Geraldine Are Sad

 

So Thumbelina like Geraldine is sad. Her very being is being eaten up by

the insatiable voracity of the toad and his mother. And she is letting them

eat her. When someone is not connected to their own soul but is rather feeding

on the soul of someone else, the hunger for nourishment is endless and can

never be satisfied. Why? Because the food being eaten is the wrong food. It

does not nourish. So the toad and his mother keep on wanting to eat Thumbelina

up. As for Thumbelina she does not know what else to do other than let them.

 

She is lucky however, because deep down she knows that this situation is

abusive. That it is not right. Once she recognizes the gift of her own true

voice - she never really sang much before her encounter with the toads- and

realizes the terrible cost of only following the need of that part of the

personality to express itself at the cost of every other - she is able to flee from

the toads dark embrace. With the help of the fish - symbol here of deep

feeling and intuition - she is able to escape the toad and his mum and take with

her the gift of her singing. The trick is of course to be able to leave once

the gift of learning has been received As well as of course to learn not to fall

into such situations again. Which we likely will not if we really have

learned. Which apparently Thumbelina has not yet fully. Neither apparently had

Geraldine.

 

Thumbelina Pretends to be a Beetle and Geraldine is Betrayed

 

Geraldine recognizing part of her story in Thumbelina decides to leave

Alfonso and his glamourous store and take her cushions with her. All does not go

well however for she runs into a rather thin dark artist from England. He is

into black and grey. "Her cushions would be so much more attractive." he says

"If only she would leave all their vibrant colours behind. Colours by the way

which are altogether too overwhelming. How can anyone be at peace flaunting

colours like that?" he asks her. And Geraldine feeling vulnerable and certainly

not at peace with herself agrees.

 

All her cushions now are black, white, and grey with the odd stroke of

burgundy to give them colour. They are selling quite well at markets and fairs.

Geraldine's black period is becoming renowned to a certain arty crowd. The

English artist has become her lover. She has moved in to his flat. They drink

vino tinto and eat plenty of olives and bread dipped in olive oil. All should be

well, and yet....When she looks out of the window with the sun going down

she sees not a thing but the impending black sky.Something is missing!!!! And

her copy of Thumbelina has been left behind in her rental. Who would have

though she would have needed it here?

 

One day when her lover is away Geraldine finds herself making the most gaudy

outrageous cushions she has ever designed. When the English artist comes home

he is inflamed.This is betrayal. He can not bear to be near her. Not whilst

she has her cushions draped all about filling his flat with such blatant

vivacity. She must remove them before any one sees them. Taken aback she begins

to remove them one by one when suddenly the thought comes that she will not.

She will take her cushions - the new vibrant ones and return to her flat.

 

Once the hauteur of the moment is over, Geraldine finds herself alone and

bemused. Once in her own apartment, she turns on the light, covers the sofa

with her colourful cushions, flops down on top of them and returns to Thumbelina

. What else can she do?

 

After leaving the toads Thumbelina encounters a beetle who wants to make her

more attractive to him by making her more like him and turning her into a

beetle. Such a painful thing this to be loved for what we are not. To be loved

for what someone thinks we should be rather than for what we are. O the beetle

loves her voice and the accolades he might achieve from being associated with

her. But he does not love her. Any more that he loves him self., Probably we

only need to own and manipulate others in such a beetly way if we feel as if

something is missing inside us that we imagine we can only gain from someone

else. Probably all the beetle really wants is an accurate mirror for his own

soul. An accurate mirror which essentially we are all going to have to find

for ourselves inside ourselves. It cannot be gotten by trying to force someone

else into being a reflection, and it can only be found with the beloved when

he or she is a natural mirror, simply by being who he or she is.

 

Evidently neither the Beetle nor Thumbelina quite know this, for he dresses

her up in a beetle costume, and Thumbelina lets him. It provides after all a

chance for her to sing and a chance perhaps for her to be loved? Now she looks

like a beetle, love and recognition are flowing towards her . But is it the

love that she wants? Are black and white cushions and a thin English artist the

loves of Geraldine's life? And were they ever?

 

When Thumbelina's costume accidentally falls off and her real self peaks

through no body likes her. Here a thing of real sadness is revealed.When her

own naked and vulnerable self shows its face it is not received. It is called

ugly. Such a soul murdering this. It does not take much to wound that that

tender, open, vulnerable place inside us, but the cost in terms of the walls and

blockades we create about ourselves in self defence, and then try to relate

by can be tremendous. They can quite literally cost us our lives.

 

Clearly Thumbelina is not in a context that is nourishing or beneficial for

her soul. She is caste out by the beetles, which is painful yes.. As such

refusals are. But in its way it is beneficial For this turning away is an

indication that this is no real place for Thumbelina to linger or be. Happily for

Thumbelina she does not remain victim to a fate that does not reflect or

allow her own good to shine through. She like Geraldine leaves the beetle behind.

 

Thumbelina is Lost and Geraldine is Lonely

 

Geraldine may unwittingly be taking steps on her own behalf, yet she is

lonely. and lost. Reward is not instant. Just like Thumbelina she does not know

where to go, for all the many coloured cushions now lying helter-skelter all

about her flat. Life alone in an apartment in Spain for all its beauty is not

enough. Nothing is ever enough if one is not well connected to ones own soul,

ones creativity, and ones own inner life. Geraldine is feeling abandoned and

gloomy . Understandably too she has been abandoned just as she has abandoned

her self and her real feelings so many times before. Here she is in this place

wither she came to find her own life and have a good time and she is

miserable.

 

"If only it would rain!" she thinks to herself. "A person gets depressed

when faced with too much sun! "Not knowing what else to do she closes the

curtains and takes to her bed with Thumbelina and begins to read on...

 

Thumbelina having left the beetle is traipsing about feeling lonely and

lost. She cannot find her fairy Prince. , and he though he is searching for her,

cannot find her either. Indeed as part of his quest, he has fallen into a river

- fallen into his emotions and feelings perhaps - into the depth of his pain

and despair at being unable to find Thumbelina or his own inner magic and

life. Before he can get out of the the river, it freezes over. The Fairy Prince

is encapsulated in ice. He is at a stand still, Just like Geraldine. She too

is unable to do any thing on her own behalf, all she can do is be. In a

particular way however, as she just like Thumbelina continues her quest for the

beloved and a way of being that is simply a full recognition of her own

soul.

 

Winter is upon us. The dark time is here, and the Prince is still, Thumbelina

is busy. So is Geraldine with her inner life. Lost and alone Thumbelina

travels the cold snow covered lands, till finally she comes upon a mouse who offers

her shelter in her underground home where she introduces her to a mole. It

is time to go down. This is not the time for outward expression. This is the

time for inward realization. Hopefully!Anyway down Thumbelina goes

and Geraldine depressed and alone in her bed with

the curtains still closed goes with her.

 

Thumbelina goes Down and Geraldine is Depressed

 

Thumbelina is in the tunnels of the mouse and the mole - tunnels of the old

matriarch and patriarch perhaps of the kind who are sourced in their ability to

have power over others, rather than sourced in a sound and happy connection

and integrity within themselves. The ones who would have her observant to their

rules and needs at a cost to her own. They are the archetypical epitome of

all the men and women Thumbelina has ever been abused or abandoned by. They are

the epitome of every way she has every hurt herself.

 

O they will offer Thumbelina shelter and protection of a kind, but O such a

cost. Never again to see the light of day. Never to follow or be what she

loves or is. The safety they offer is not the kind of safety in which soul can

come forward., It is the gnarling stunting kind of safety that is not really

safety at all because it is more like a prison or a trap than a real home. So

the mole and the mouse are dangerous ones who would use and usurp, even though

they may at first seem to be helpful. Better watch out if a mole and a mouse

are about! Better be careful about accepting their gifts, be alert to the

costs, even if they may for a moment seem to serve us well and we choose to

accept them.

 

The Mole is rich in worldly goods but poor of spirt. He sensing something of

that which he lacks in Thumbelina wants her for a wife. And Thumbelina not

knowing what else to do, feeling lost and forlorn in these deep and dark places

seeing no way out at all, is about to accept him.

 

 

Thumbelina Finds a Friend and Geraldine Finds Herself

 

"No !" Geraldine cries with tears on her face. All these tears falling

down surrounding her now in a lake of wet Kleenex. "No Thumbalina! you must not

accept him! He does not love you! You do not love him! Don't you know that?

If you accept him you will never get out. You will be stuck in those tunnels

like me if you do not say "No" No! Geraldine finds herself yelling there in her

bed at all the men who never really loved her that she nevertheless said yes

to. "No" she cries at all the women she ever let abuse her however subtly. .

" No She cries at all her moments of self abuse in which she did not know any

better. Or did not know that she had a choice.

 

Geraldine is grieving all the many moments she had not felt herself.

Meanwhile Thumbelina down there in the tunnels despite the darkness is not alone A

swallow is there to come to to her aid. An unlikely place to find a swallow. Yet

there he is. He has been wounded in flight and fallen by accident into the

moles tunnels.He has been Thumbelina's friend all along. He is perhaps in our

tale a representation of the wise one inside. The one who combines intuition

with insight knowing and know-how. Or perhaps he represents a kind of inner

father energy or authority - the father that would nurture guide and protect his

young in a way that would encourage the unique gift that they are to shine

though and be fulfilled. Or perhaps he is a secret messenger from the

unconscious whose whispers will come out to guide us at times when we will listen and

at times even when we will not! Or perhaps he represents one - a friend, or a

therapist or support group perhaps, who would simply hold and contain us, and

reflect us to us, when we need to go down if we are not able to contain and

reflect ourselves

 

Thumbelina says "No" and Geraldine says "Alright!"

 

What ever the case the Swallow is here. He is one who constantly encourages

Thumbelina to "follow her heart" And he is the one to help Thumbelina now. .

When she comes across him lying wounded, she nurses him back to health. As

she does, something essential inside her is restored. Her self esteem and

respect perhaps? Or her ability to recognize her heart and what it is that she

loves? Or her ability to take action on her own behalf? Her connection to her own

inner male? Her willingness to nourish and nurture her unique inner wisdom?

Whatever it is it is, something is restored that will help her say "no" to the

Mole at the last minuet, as she stands at the alter and is about to be wed.

 

"Alright! "exclaims Geraldine whose now has stopped crying and is feeling

energized for the first time in days. Something is up. Though vulnerable and

shaky from all the grieving of what she thought she had lost, something precious

has also been found. She feels soft gentle, unabusing and alive. Sensitive

yet spontaneous there is a childlike glow of aliveness to her that feels quite

attractive. Her feelings and her sense of her self have been restored. Not

for ever perhaps for certainly for now.

 

As Thumbelina nursed the Swallow and came to her "no-ing" something happened

to the fairy Prince. As she became more attuned not only to her real feelings

but also her ability to act soundly in accord with them, the fairy Prince in

his block of ice is defrosted and restored. A cluster of fragile bewinged

ones see him in the ice and come to his rescue by thawing the ice with their

breath.

 

What are these creatures? How could they do this? Well lets think for a

moment. They are tiny - like tiny children. They are creative and open willing to

follow their heart and believe that anything might be possible. Including

freeing the Prince from the hold of the ice. Could it be they are a representation

all that is childlike in its authenticity uniqueness vulnerability and

liveliness in us? Could it be that this childlike place inside, is the part of the

us that can cut through the ice and release us again to be free to live our

lives as an authentic expression of who we are? That this is the part of us

that we must find and connect with, to find and connect with our own essential

integrity? Can it be that with out a connection to that vulnerable yet very

alive place inside our experience of living is always in some strange way

frozen or false because something that is precious is missing or being denied?

 

Thumbelina Says Yes and Geraldine Feels Inspired

 

What ever the case by now in our story the Fairy Prince and Thumbelina are

on their way towards one another.Their main work is done. Soul is attuned to

and turned towards its fulfillment. And so Thumbelina and the Prince come

together and marry, Before they do however Thumbelina is to sing at the fairy

Prince's behest - and summon the fairies. Now Thumbelina can sing and not

have the voice cost her any other part of her being. Now she can sing in the

presence of one who truly loves and honours her. Now she can sing on behalf of

herself the magic of the fairies - that inner childlike place again - can come

and give her wings. She and the fairy Prince are equals. And so the two can

be wed and in true fairy tale fashion and live "happily together for ever

after"

 

Geraldine sitting on her balcony sipping tea as she comes to the end of

Thumbelina feels inspired. Closing the book she looks about her and sees that it

has been raining and that there is a great rainbow stretching its way across

the sea and up into the hills. The colours are breathtaking and Geraldine knows

exactly what she will do. She will design a cushion, she will do it right

away. It will be like a rainbow with the sea and the mountains about it. It will

be about living. This will be her work. Making cushions that reflect life

about her. She will look for a small finca up in the hills and turn it into a

studio and from now on she will do what she loves because she loves to. She will

not return to the city. The life she sees there is not the life that she loves

so she cannot make cushions that reflect her soul there.

 

Thumbelina and Geraldine Live Happily Ever After?

 

True this path will not be easy but at least her soul will be in tact. And

should it ever be ripped she will take the necessary steps to repair it. Life

will not be without ups and downs but it will at least be her own. This is

the promise she makes to herself the day that she reads Thumbelina and her

Prince at last are to be wed. And this is the promise she has kept for over a

year now, and so far she has found it to be rewarding if somewhat daunting.

 

Finding a finca turned out not to be easy. At last she found a small house on

the outskirts of town. the renovating of which is still not complete and

could be a whole other story in and of itself. Yet when her former boss from the

days she had been with Norman got in contact and asked her to come back and

work for him as a designer - a friend had given him one of her cushions -

she spent a terrible few days thinking that she might. It was so tempting, and

flattering too. But though she booked her ticket when it came time to leave

for the plane she just could not get herself to do it. So she said "no."

 

She did however enter a deal that he could sell her cushions whenever she

made them. Sometimes there were many when she was feeling prolific. Sometimes

there were no cushions at all when some other part of her heart needed

attention. But this was the deal that she had made with herself. And this is the deal

that she kept. Thumbelina meanwhile sits on the bookshelf and is no longer

read. True, Geraldine did make a whole series of cushions inspired by her

imagery that no one wanted. She was secretly pleased.She wanted them herself.

There is however a fat book of fairy tales awaiting her attention. Every now and

then she squints at it. One day she knows she will read one. She just does

not know which, and she does not know when.......

 

Written by Nanna Aida Svendsen © after being inspired by the movie Thumbelina

by Don Bluth, based on the HC Andersen fairytale of the same name.

www.pleasanthouse.com