I don’t really believe in fairy tales.
Yet, I watched the cartoon versions over and over when I was a little kid.
The tragic ending of the fairy tale, Rapunzel, haunted me for years. A wicked witch banished Rapunzel to a tiny room at the top of a tower. The witch blinded Rapunzel’s would- be rescuer. He stumbled home in disgrace. In the last scene, Rapunzel lowered her golden hair out the window and wept.
“Laugh and the world laughs with you,” the narrator said as a lone black bird circled slowly above the tower, “cry and you cry alone.”
Another show came on.
But the words of the narrator settled into my mind.
In the middle of the night, over twenty years later, I recalled them again. Huddled in the laundry room, I wept as quietly as I could. The rest of the family slept.
It felt like the dark side of fairy tales had cursed my home. Health issues, emotional issues and parenting issues overwhelmed me. I tried to pray, but I didn’t know where to begin.
The words “Cry and you cry alone,” filled my mind. The image of the girl in the tower haunted me all over again.
My ultimate conclusion – I was totally and completely alone.
It’s funny how we decide the way life ought to be.
What we believe often emerges from single experiences; what we see and feel, taste and hear.
One isolated incident can determine the way we respond to certain situations for years to come. Truth and distortion get stored in the brain.
Side by side.
Never questioned or compared.
That’s how a grown woman ended up living her life according to a fairy tale.
It took the words of Paul in Galatians to start the process, replacing a lie with the truth.
The renewing of my mind.
He simply admonished people to “carry each other‘s burdens”. No more hiding our wounded hearts or turning away from the groans of a brother in pain.
So much for wicked witches, circling birds and damsels in distress.