Did you know that I once was a dragon? You better believe it! A full blown one: teeth, wings and all! I was a dragon, big and strong and scaly. I had impenetrable scales, armor over my whole body. Nothing could get in and nothing could get out. I was protected. I had huge strong teeth that I flashed at anyone who came near. They were sharp and piercing and anyone knew if they came by, I would bite! And not to mention the tongues of fire I breathed! Yes, with just one breath, almost as simple as uttering a word, fire torched out of my mouth and no one survived. I had a strong neck that no rope of man could conquer. And I had thick talons that could lash out whenever I got angry, and I had piercing eyes that showed anyone who looked in them that I was better than them. And to top it all off, I had a long sweeping tail that could knock over anything in its path. 

And the piles of treasure I owned! I collected treasure upon treasure, gold, silver, money, precious gems—you name it. My lair was filled with the mountains of wealth. But it was never enough. I always wanted more, schemed with how I would get it, who I would take it from, how I would steal it. I was feared throughout the land, of my greed and love of money.

And oh my wings, my glorious wings! They flapped and they flew and I could fly wherever I wanted. I could fly as high as the heavens and as far as the four winds. I thought myself greater than God with the heights I could fly on my own. I controlled everything and I went wherever I could please.

I ruled! I was in charge! I was bigger and better than anyone else!

So there I sat, in my lair on my piles of money. But instead of living my life happy, I lived it miserable and lonely. My teeth and fire scared away who dared approach me, my greed made people run and hide when I got near. And even so, my wings kept me far far away from anyone else. I became lonely, so so lonely.

Then I realized I didn’t want to be a dragon! I didn’t want to be a full blown dragon with the teeth wings and all! I wanted to be a person like everyone else! I didn’t want the piles of gold I thought satisfied me, I didn’t want the wings that let me go far away from others. I didn’t want a stubborn neck and a fire breathing mouth. I wanted to talk to others without them being afraid of being burned or pierced. 

And then I realized I only was a dragon to protect a hurting heart of the inside of me. That my scales and talons and teeth and wings only serve to protect the pain that was in there. But no matter how hard I tried, what was outside could not fix what was inside. 

And as I realized this, I saw a scale fall off! I looked at where it had fallen off and used one of my talons and peeled off another one. Then, one by one, I began to peel off my scaly armor. And then I wiggled my teeth and one came out! Wiggling some more, I started to pull them all out until only human ones remained. And as I looked, my big strong legs began to shrink and my wings disappear and I realized I was turning from being a dragon to a real person! This whole time, I didn’t realize I was actually a real person all along! 

Now as a real person I looked at my mountains of treasure in my deep dark lair and realized I didn’t need to live there anymore. I could go live with people! And I was sure people wanted to live with me! I was able to leave it all behind, because I wasn’t a dragon anymore. I didn’t need treasure or a flames of fire coming out of my mouth.

Oh the relief, I was a dragon no longer. But, yes, I once was a dragon! But not anymore. I am a human now. One of flesh and bone and most importantly of heart. One of kindness not viciousness. No talons can be found on me, not a single pointy tooth left. Now, if you met me, you probably wouldn’t have guessed but I am telling you—I used to be a dragon!

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