I know…boo, hiss. But Seriusly Black folks, it’s time to start learning a new spell!
As I mentioned before, I truly believe that we muggles can be using these amazing Harry Potter spells in our own lives–who says magic is only for the movies??
Last time I talked about the Riddikulus spell and how you can use humor to help you through some scary stuff. Expecto Patronum is actually kind of similar in a way, as it is used to make something very frightening go away–specifically the Dementors, very creepy Azkaban prison guards who feed off your happiness by sucking your soul out of your body so they can have it for their very own. Not very nice.
In the story, Dementors are described as black-cloaked hooded figures. Most of time you can’t see their faces, but when you do get a glimpse of their mummified open maw, you really wish you hadn’t. Since they are so bloody awful, they do a pretty good job of keeping the prisoners of the wizard jail behind bars, but the problem is they get restless in there and like to take some vacation time to harass innocent folks as well. I suppose they don’t get much happiness from the criminals, in their defense, but they pretty much suck. (I’m on a roll here.)
Expecto Patronum is a spell that produces a ‘Patronus’–an animal of some sort that is specific to the wizard.
I reckon this conjured creature is so sweet and happy that the incessantly crabby Dementors literally can’t stand the cuteness-factor and it sends them running. Or, flying. It’s a tough spell to master, and once the witch or wizard successfully shooes it away apparently eating some chocolate makes them feel a whole lot better. I think that J.K. Rowling is onto something there.
Now is where I say that more than likely you have some kind of soul-sucking demon in your real life. We all do, at one time or another. It could be a person who makes it feel like they are literally sucking the life out of you, they are so toxic. It could be an illness that hovers over you or someone else you love. It could be a nasty habit that is really tough to kick or a Gollum thought that keeps you from moving forward in your life. As a Patronus, Dementors in our muggle world can take many forms, and ones that are specific to you. Your personal Dementor can definitely leave you gasping for air, hurting you at your core, making you feel cold and alone, feeling like there is no happiness left in the world. And then stuffing your face full of chocolate in an attempt to feel better.
I wouldn’t dare underestimate the healing power of chocolate, but this alone is only a temporary fix; eventually the Snickers sugar-rush will die down and you’ll still be left with your salty demon to deal with. Here’s where your Expecto Patronum spell-casting comes in.
Think about something you can do that helps to banish whatever it is you are dealing with. If it’s a toxic person, make it a point to spend less time around them. Sometimes this means ending a relationship, which is by no means easy and can bring up all sorts of other shite to deal with–but I promise that shite will be worth the effort, as getting rid of a festering wound only makes your body more healthy and better in the long run. Sometimes your demon is an illness, which we often don’t have any control over…this is a really tough one, but one that can be met with humor, a renewed gratefulness for the wonderful things we have and the loving people in our lives, and the inspiration it can give us to live life to its fullest.
Your Dementor can be your nasty thoughts, about yourself or others, thoughts that are creating so much sadness, low self-worth, anger and fear that you are literally stuck in place. You can start banishing these by acknowledging their falseness, seeking the truth, surrounding yourself with people and things that inspire you and remind you just how wonderful you are.
I’m not going to pretend that waving a wand and thinking happy thoughts is going to magically make things better. As in the wizarding world, your Expecto Patronum spell is not easy to do. But I think with practice, you will get better and better at it–the key is to not stop trying, and to believe that it can be done. I know you’ve got this, and if you need help, let me know! I’d be more than happy to be your Patronus–together we could make some serious Badass magic!!