The Crane Wife is an old Japanese fairy tale of a poor man who discovers a crane, pierced by an arrow, on his doorstep. He brings it into his home, nurses it back to health and then releases it back to the wild. A little while later there’s a woman at his door, whom he quickly falls in love with, and marries. The woman is a skilled weaver and makes him a garment out of the most luxurious silk. He is so delighted with it that he asks her to make more, so he can sell them at the market. She agrees on the condition that he never sees how she makes the cloth. The man readily agrees. Shortly thereafter the couple can afford every comfort.
But greed takes over and the man pressures his wife to make even more garments, faster than before, oblivious of how his demands are negatively affecting her health. Then one day his curiosity got the better of him and he betrays her trust by sneaking into her room to spy on her. There, he discovers a crane sitting next to his wife, plucking feathers out of her body as she weaves them into the loom. When the crane sees the husband, he flies away and is never seen again.
Sometimes you can do everything right, and people still find a way to deceive or disappoint you. The key is your response to these betrayals. Initially your heart is broken, and you may instinctively react by withdrawing to nurse your wounds. But what happens after that? Are you angry? Desperate? Unreasonable? This is when the wounds of the past can negatively affect your present day.
The Phoenix is the very symbol of transformation; about burning and releasing that which no longer serves you. Whether it is a situation, a relationship - or just the memory of one, recognize the lessons learned, thank it and then burn it. Write that which you wish to release on a piece of paper and light a candle (or a bonfire) and watch that baby light up and disappear in front of your very eyes. Then allow the new you, transformed, to rise out of the ashes on the wings of the mighty Phoenix, better than before.