Artwork by “Jim’ll Paint It”

From the artist who painted the above piece: “An Alien, a Predator & a Terminator pouring out their 40s at Bill Paxton’s grave – as requested by Patton Oswalt and sent to me by a fair few of our mutual Twitter followers”

I came across this tribute to actor Bill Paxton who passed away recently in my Facebook feed as I follow the artist who created it.

It reminded me of a magical practice (although I would not have called it that then) from my youth.

When I was a kid, between the ages of six and twelve, I was afraid of the dark.

In the house where I grew up, we had an in-law apartment on one side of the house which you had to walk outside to get to as there was no door between the apartment and the main house internally.

During that time, when I had to go from one side to the other at night, the darkness would terrify me. I imagined a series of horrifying creatures waiting in the darkness for me. I would run as fast as I could from one side of the house to the other. Heart pounding with third eye blazing images of  terrifying beasts until I was safely inside with the door closed behind me.

The main creature of this aggregate of terror was a giant blue wolf. I have no idea why my fear materialized as such a thing as I had no interest in werewolves or the myths surrounding them, but alas, he hunted me still…

The scene mentioned above would play out every night for years at a time before I developed a way not only cope with the fear, but control it.

It happened one night when I had just finished hauling my ass to the other side of my house only to find the door had been locked. I knocked and heard my mother coming down the stairs to open it but I was terrified as the moments began to pass.

I turned around and looked into the black night at the edge of where the light gave way. I closed my eyes and clenched my chest feeling the monsters closing in and then…

I say them stepping into the light, looking at me. I looked up at the great blue wolf and asked it one question.

Can we be friends?

The answer was yes. I was shocked.

It was a very short and simple conversation before the door opened behind me and I stumbled backwards into the house. My mother said something and walked away as I turned around and looked out the window.

There was nothing. Just the deck lamps illuminating the edges of the darkness.

I smiled and waved to the invisible terrors who had become my friends and my protectors. And while I was still afraid of the dark after that, I would call upon the great blue wolf to walk with me and protect me from the unseen forces that would do me harm and really…

I never had to worry again.

As I have gotten older, I have faced new fears. Sometimes, when the stress of said fears show their face I will think of the blue wolf and ask him to walk with me. The fears do not always go away but the wisdom of my younger self and the servitor whom was created by that little boy, give me strength in times of need.

Sometimes, the demons who most terrify us are those of our own creation. In some cases, these entities are simply looking for love and understanding…

And so in closing I say unto you…

Befriend your nightmares and go after your dreams. You will be surprised how inverting your fears and working with them will produce results previously thought impossible.

May the blue wolf protect your steps should call upon him.