Hello, my name is Vrederick. I am a monster.
Vrederick is tall and furry with long arms, big red horns and claws. He’s not very intelligent. He used to live on the border of the big dark forest “Dissertation Writing”. If a hapless wanderer (writer) came along he would he would tell them about the horrors of the forest, the darkness, the rocks to stumble upon and the grabbing branches. If that didn’t deter the wanderer, he would start talking about all of the other forests that scared them and all the rocks already stumbled over, that those forest were way less scary than this forest and that they were in no way equipped to traverse it with those shoes and what ever made them think that they could even walk that far. You can imagine how scary and paralyzing such a meeting could be.
One day a curious wanderer came along and after retreating from the forests edge started investigating the reason that Vrederick lived by the forest and scared wanderers away. It seemed that Vrederick really believed what he was saying, he really thought the forest was full of trouble the wanderer could not brave. He was also taking lots of hardship on himself by living in such a remote place and so lonely. So maybe, thought the wanderer, his actions weren’t meant to be hurtful but were born out of love and caring and if that were the case, then maybe his behavior could be influenced to be actually helpful.
The wanderer decided to open communication and invited Vrederick to tea by the big climbing tree next to the little brook. They talked about why the wanderer wanted to cross the forest and about how it made her feel. About what other ways there could be of Vrederick and the wanderer interacting. The wanderer acknowledged Vrederick’s helpful intention and Vrederick acknowledged that his methods might be less helpful than intended. They expressed their needs for safety and caring and movement and spaciousness. After that they quietly sat next to each other for some time. Finally the wanderer suggested that Vrederick could indeed be helpful, by holding the big bright light with his long arms to illuminate the way through the forest, so that the wanderer could see the dangers, before they befell him. The wanderer promised that she would go slowly and rest as much as she needed to. Vrederick, because he isn’t very smart and couldn’t think of a different way to be helpful himself, was glad to accept this solution. Of course he reserved the right to go back to his old way if at any time he felt unsafe, or uncared for.
It went well, so Vrederick decided to leave his position at the edge of the forest and live by the big climbing tree. He no longer scares hapless wanderers, but instead holds the light to illuminate the paths of this forest and sometimes other forests as well.