The Shadow Side of Demons
Copyrighted by Lorna Tedder. Originally published in Third Degree Below.
Your worst fears will eat you alive. And if you think about them, they will find you.
Back in my teen years, there was a book or movie out…horror, I believe…based on the premise that if you imagine your worst fears, they will come true. This wasn’t exactly an original idea and it’s been used many times in media, but of course, it makes for quite a few gory scenes in a horror movie. How many ways can our teen prom queens die in a movie? Yeah. The movie was focused on death and gore, though, not on all the other possibilities of worst fears, like losing your kids, abandonment, destruction of your reputation and career, losing your home, etc, etc, etc.
So the answer? As one teen screamed to another in the movie, “Don’t think about !” Naturally, the other thought about and died horribly. They weren’t even thinking about , but no, somebody had to bring it up, now didn’t they?
I had many a Southern Baptist preacher tell me over
the years that if I had a single seed of doubt that I was “saved,” then I was going straight to hell. Great. Tell that to someone who already overanalyzes everything and has an extreme imagination and pretty soon, she’s questioning everything she believes and clinging to whatever the preacher has to say for salvation, more so than her own God because she’s now dealing with seeds of doubt. I actually overcame that at a very early age when at 14, I overheard the preacher explain to someone that if he could plant those seeds of doubt, his congregation would re-commit, re-Baptize, re-join, re-whatever his church, that his stats would increase, and he’d look even better for the next job in his preaching career, plus he’d look really good to the other preachers in the Southern Baptist Convention. He’d taken a number of courses in psychology to hone this technique.
Two years ago today, I signed my divorce papers and moved forward with a positive mindset about everything I wanted to come into my life and all the things I wanted to clear out and leave behind. It’s hard enough to do that on your own, but sometimes other people seem to do everything in their power, even unintentionally, to flip you over.
I have on occasion in the past couple of years become irrationally distressed when I was in a positive mindset, absolutely believing something good was on its way, and then…wham! Some friend, relative, colleague, or stranger would flatten me with my worst fears…often unexpectedly. Not just planting a seed of doubt. No, more like transplanting a whole tree of doubt that they’d grown… right into my heart and mind. And then I’d lose my positive momentum and be shaken to my core. My worst fears would take over then. Where they’d been held at bay, they would rush in and all around me, and I’d lose myself in them. They would paralyze to the point of not being able to act or not being able to see opportunities that would make me deliriously happy.
That’s one reason why it’s so important to surround yourself with positive people. People who will help you call in joy and love.
We can talk all we want about fighting fear and doubt but they’re still there as fear and doubt. Still living, breathing demons. Waiting for us to think about them… or for someone else to provide that opportunity.
What if we imagined the “shadow” side of those demons, their “light opposite,” if you will? Instead of basking in the fear of losing someone or of causing them pain or them causing us pain, what if we bask in the joy of having someone and just loving them and them loving us? Can we just try this? Just for the rest of this year? Who’s with me?????