August is birthday month in our family. Four of the five of us celebrated the passing of another year in the eighth month of each year.
Being the lone one out, I was very aware at an early age of the clashing forces within the walls of our home. When you have four Leo the Lion activists vying for the top of the hill, my Aries Ram knew to stay down the slope and out of danger.
Now really, does this look like a pack of lions?
Not to say that I avoided attention, rams are known to want the limelight too, just in a different way…from a place of safety. How I ended up in this den of boisterous lions is a puzzlement. Perhaps I had been deserted by my family of rams and this pack of lions had taken me in.
I’ve often thought about how the Lions took turns as the leader; each finding their particular speciality in which to excel and rule.
For instance, Dad roared the loudest and would seem, to an outsider, to be the kingpin of our family. Not so fast. Inside our compact group it was clear Mother carried the big stick, making and enforcing the rules.
My older sister, being the first-born and a Leo, would not be denied her power. As an only child for 4 years, she learned how to wield her influence, marking her territory and demanding a place at the table. No doubt she considered the ‘family’ as only 3, not expecting or wanting any additional clan members.
I came along, disrupting what had been a somewhat closed society, followed 16 months later by another baby cub, my younger sister. As another Leo, she showed her lionish traits with smarts and determination.
We each assumed certain roles, and clung to those positions like a lifeboat saving us from drowning. The roles we played may not have been comfortable, but we knew them and felt secure within that knowing.
If one of us stepped out of character, tried to test another way, the roaring around the family den was quick and loud and fear inducing.
But nothing stays the same, and the pack began to leave the lair, each one starting their own family, and mimicking the rules and positions we learned as children.
Today, we have only 3 left: 2 Leos and one Ram. But we will celebrate throughout the month, remembering the roar of 4 lions: the noise, the challenges, the hierarchy that has defined us for almost 80 years.
August 9–First cub
August 14–Mother Lioness
August 16–Third cub
August 20–Father Lion
Happy birthday, all you Leos.