In Harry Potter, there’s this charm called a “patronus.”  It’s used to protect against one of the creepiest beings known in the wizarding world:  dementors. A fully formed patronus charm usually takes the shape of an animal, and that animal charm drives away the dementors, helping its wizard-friend to safety.  Specifically, patronuses will be the form of an animal whose qualities are most deeply aligned with that of the person casting the charm.

Naturally, being the huge Potter-head that I am, I jumped on the chance to learn what my patronus would be!  So I took the quiz.  My result:  an Irish Wolfhound. The Irish Wolfhound is a relatively old dog-breed.  They were originally bred for war.  They’re huge, powerful, and intimidating.  Surprisingly, though, they’re not fighters.  These dogs are gentle giants who can be shy, playful, and are known for their easygoing, reliable, calm nature.  As I read these descriptors, my heart started to ache with validation.

I grew up in a bit of a warzone – or, at least, it felt like that.  I learned to always be prepared for a fight: that there was an argument I’d have to win or a battle I’d have to defend myself from lurking around every corner.  I’ve spent years working to release that “battle-ready” mindset.

In my heart, I knew:  I may have been raised preparing for war, but I’m not a “fighter.”  So when I was reading about the Irish Wolfhounds, their gentleness, and their playfulness, I started to tear up because I felt like I was reading about a part of myself that I deeply hoped to one day embody fully.

Today, I see Irish Wolfhounds as not only my patronus but my inspiration and my spirit animal as well. Every time I see one, I’m reminded of powerful gentleness – and I know that these vibrations are a deep part of me too.  With encouragement from my patronus quiz result, I find more gentleness in myself every day.  I gain more permission for ease, calm, and releasing the “battle-ready” attitude.  As this practice deepens, I’m finding that embracing my inner Irish Wolfhound has already started to shift the world around me.  There’s less creep – fewer things to be scared about or fight against – and I haven’t seen a single dementor.

Blog written by teacher Christina M. Dunlap.  In addition to her work with Boulder Psychic Institute, Christina paints soul portraits and sells her energy artwork through Etsy: viaCMD.  Stay in-the-know with stories and perspective-shifting insights from Christina by subscribing to her weekly newsletter:  http://eepurl.com/cRFROz.

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