Sometimes you don’t choose your Gods they Choose You...
I should preface this with a little background information about myself. I have always been a rebel without a cause and of course become even much more so of rebel when given a cause. When everyone is turning right I must go left usually the reason is arbitrary at best. The more someone pushes me to go with the herd the more I will fight them and I do enjoy a good fight. It may simply be my Cat-ness (see Bast How I met My Mother.)
Many moons ago when I was a young gothling, a wanna be Baby Bat. I had just graduated from highschool and was living on my own and attending the local community college. As one social outcast can only find another. I soon found what was affectionately called Freaks Corner. A section of the cafeteria where all of us misfits hung out in between classes or even during classes, some of us didn’t even attend school there anymore. It was here in Freaks Corner where I graduated from a research Pagan to a practicing Pagan. Freaks Corner was my Mecca, it was everything I always fantasized about in the French Revolution cafes, where writers like Victor Hugo and Alexandre Dumas met till the wee hours of the morning drinking and debating right there in modern Suburbia. It was HERE that I met my first real Pagans people who knew about the things I was just learning about and not some faceless screen name half a world way via an internet connect but flesh and blood people. And some of the very worst kind of Pagans I could have fallen with. I learned much during my time there everything except what I was taking classes on. In between LARPing Vampire the Masquerade and playing Magic the Gathering was discussions on Nietzsche, Satanism and Anarchy. This is also where I met my first Unofficial Teacher.
I say unofficial because she refused to teach me. She had taken many a student under her wing but always refused my requests. Finally, she told me that she only teaches those who are not naturally gifted. That she was the “Special Ed” teacher. I never fully accepted this flattering refusal and figured that there was another reason she would never tell me. As one who was never easily deterred I learned much from her by simply watching and observing. In this group of people were those who dabbled in things they shouldn’t. Soon theirs eyes started to gleam with a sheen that is a characteristic often associated with movie villains. Everyone in the group started to go off their hinges a bit and the rumors ran rampant. There was talk of demon summoning and animal sacrifice none of which I was a part of nor saw. I shrugged most of it off as vicious gossip and did my best to not get involved.
My life took a turn as it does and I was pulled away from the group I would not run into any of them until years later. I had just come out of the Broom Closet to my then husband and was looking for those of like mind that I could share my beliefs with. When I ran into the old group from Freaks Corner who had graduated to taking up space in a local coffee house. Upon running into my old mentor this time I was drawn into the web like that of a fly to a spider. She had a habit of holding court and at a friend's place around the corner where she would proceed to channel and let herself be ridden by the spirits of her choice, much to the awe and amusement to those in her audience. At the time the things I experienced in that room was extremely convincing and scary. The things I took part of in my own ignorance. Looking back now I do wonder how much of it was real and how much of it was a great manipulation, an answer I shall never know.
It was during such a session that the name of Set was brought up. She had stated that someone in the group had caught his attention and that he would be watching them. At which point my eye was drawn upward and what did I see. It was like a great ripping of the fabric of reality someone one had pulled way the ceiling and was peering in. With big eyes and a cheshire grin staring right at me. Having already been thoroughly attached to Bast at this time she warmly said that no harm would come to me. He simply wanted to get to know me better.
Now understand I am NOT an Egyptian reconstructionist and never was. I did not know who Set was at the time and didn’t really know the Egyptian Pantheon. I was still searching and that was simply not a direction my quest had gone. While I am thankful for those who research and preserve the Egyptian traditions it was simply never anything that worked for me.
That moment of meeting Set was fall of 2005. 2006 was my year of Hell. Set was literally invoked into my life and he literally destroyed everything that was not needed. For those that read Tarot it was like getting the Death card and the Tower card in the same reading. I was completely stripped bare of everything that I had built up from before that time and had to completely start from scratch. I lost my home, my business, divorced my husband, became seriously ill. He was a sand storm that came into my life and ripped me down to my bones. His only response to my pleas of mercy was. I like my children strong you will survive or perish. Anything else matters not.
I have learned that Set is the Epitome of Tough Love. Sink or Swim. I do not regret that time. I learned so much in such a short time. While the learning process was painful one does not forget those lesson because the pain has etched them into your memory. And the rewards of survival the rewards of succeeding after such tribulations ARE GREAT. My reward was ROCKY.
My God comes to me at night. He whispers in my ear, “Come you must tell my side of the story”. He sit besides me on my beat up cat fur covered couch in a suit cut to fit like a glove. Dark royal blue with a soft slate gray pinstripe, a crisp white shirt underneath with the collar open at his throat. His carrot orange red hair is swept off his face as his finely woven dreadlocks fall to his waist. He smiles at me with a big toothy grin chewing on a cigar gold rings flash on his fingers. Its a cross between corporate exec with old school gangster. Just enough, thug as they say to know he doesn’t mind getting his hands dirty if he has to. “Write my story he says, Tell my side.” So I do.
This last year has been one of contemplation for me. I have a done a lot of Soul work and searching. In some ways I have more questions than answers, but I have found some answers to some very hard questions. I have always been a very blunt and honest individual. I repeatedly warn people to not ask my opinion because they will get it and they may not like what I have to say. I have a habit of putting people in their place and they tend to not like it very much. I try to curve this behavior because it is very troublesome but sometimes I just can't help myself. I call a spade a spade, this is why I am a Bitch. I know I am Bitch I have known this for years. I have come to terms with it.
Many times I have beat myself up over it. Asking why I didn’t just keep my mouth shut? Why couldn’t I just keep my head down? Why can’t I toe the line like everyone else? I have looked at these aspects of myself as flaws especially since I have lost many, many a friendship over it. This year I have come to terms and have embraced my Inner Bitch and Now I let my Bitch flag fly with pride.
I still warn people that this is who I am. This is an intrinsic part of my personality and if I could change it then I wouldn’t be me. Sure I would love to have diplomatic skills and a very strong verbal filter and believe me I have gotten better over the years. However as I become closer to people and began to accept them for who they are and believe they do the same for me. I lose my filter, I no longer have the edit button. Here in lies the problem some people get very upset when that happens and I am left dumbfounded because I was simply just being myself.
While I can filter it is very difficult for me, it simply is just not in my nature. It like keeping a sports car in first gear. My only solution is that I have become much more insular. It is easier for me to filter if I am doing for shorter period of times and if I am not as emotionally close to the person. I then spend the bulk of my time with people who wholly and completely accept me for me. Then I can be like a sports car driving the open road untethered and free.
What does this mean? Well if you want the kind of friend that will tell you, that yes those jeans make you look fat than I am your girl. And if you can accept this aspect about me and Love for who I truly am with my flaws proudly on display then I will be you undying loyal friend to the end of time. This is who I am, this is what I am. I cannot change this aspect of myself no more than I can change my height or my sexual orientation. Believe me I have tried.
So when someone ends their friendship with me, over me being a Bitch that tells me that they never accepted me for who I truly am. Yes, I am Bitch and my friends don’t love me despite of it. The love me because of it. When no one else will give them an honest answer they come to me, because they know I will no matter how ugly the truth may be.
I never realized until recently that other people are not like that. I knew I was different but it never occurred to me HOW different. The concept of being anything OTHER than completely and utterly honest is Foreign to me. You don’t have to be a mind reader to know what I am thinking it is plain for all the world to see. FYI I SUCK AT POKER In the reverse I can usually tell what other people are thinking. Not in the Sookie Stackhouse kind of way more like the Diana Troy kinda way.
It is damn near impossible to hide anything from me. While I realize that because of this I make people very, very uncomfortable. It forces them to deal with deep seated issues that they may not be ready to work thru. I was told that I wield the truth as weapon. True, I can and have, however the truth can only be used as a weapon against deceit. Whether this deceit is internal delusion or external illusion.
This is who I am. Buyer beware! I am a Bitch and I am proud!
As I was working on my book, one of the outlined items for each chapter was a ritual or spell. I realized as I was writing the book I was making this into more of an meditative guide. Even, when I was a child going to Lutherean Schools and we had to memorize pre written prayers I was very annoyed by this.
I have always felt that the spiriutality and what is going on in your head and your heart is more important then the words that come out of your mouth. I also felt that there was a loss of power or strength in mindlessly reciting prayers and spiritual words. To this day I cringe when I see a Witchcraft or Pagan book that has rituals where it spefically lays out word for word who says what and when.
I know in my experiance when I am reading from a script I am more concerned about getting the words correct then the actual meaning behind them. Infact this is a "tell" for new or green actors. It takes lots of time and work for an actor to be able recite their lines without it ,it sounding like they are reciting their lines.
I know as a person I would much rather have someone speak from the heart (even if they stumble over their words) than to read off a script to me. So Why wouldn't the Divine, Ancestors, Universe, and whoever or whatever you say prayers to, for and spell work feel the same?
Saying prayers and doing spell work or ritual should feel like you are giving your wedding vows. If you are not overcome with joy, love and emotion in general most likely you are doing something wrong. I am a firm believer of the "All roads lead to Rome" appoarch and it doesn't matter how you get there as long as you do. Emotion is a very powerful tool in spirituality with out emotion is it even possible to be spiritual?
I do look at pre-written spells, but I look at these as recipes. Ingredients and how those ingredients are put together. Just like when I cook I usually don't follow a recipe. I look at its ingredients and how its put together and then just go make it with what I happen to have on hand and in a manner that is most convient or enjoyable to me. I look at spells and recipes as suggestions for new way of doing things I may not have thought of doing but I always end up putting my own twist on it. If I were to follow blindly I am not sure it would be as powerful because it simply wouldn't have as much of my energy and energy is what, my freinds, makes things work. It is energy that makes the world go round.
I was sitting out on my front porch, as I have started routinely doing. Just enjoying the break in weather. The movements of my neighborhood and the cloud shapes in the sky. My way of doing a mini meditation and just communing with the life all around me.
Sometimes just sitting and being with the universe and it will begin to talk to you. You just have to sit and listen. The world around you animals and nature they all speak but it takes becoming quiet within yourself to be able to listen. For some it may take years and other may never be able to hear.
As I was just sitting observing all the motion and commotion going on around me. I heard a rustle in the Oak tree across the street. It was the sound of stems breaking and leaves falling. Technically I was really too far away to hear this sound ,about ten yards, with the cars driving past and the children playing next door. Hear it, I did and it caught my attention and as I watched this mighty oak shed a small branch of leaves like a tear falling from its face. I knew that this was meant for me.
I have discreetly been giving offerings to the nature spirits in my neighborhood for the past couple of months and now they were returning the favor. I walked over and picked up the dropped leaf and took the opportunity to pick up other previously fallen leaves and acorns. To be used for future projects.
Magickal Form: Acorn, bark, branches, trees
The Oak is connected with spells for protection and strength, fertility, money and success, and good fortune. Carry an acorn in your pocket when you go to an interview or business meeting; it will be bring you good luck. If you catch a falling Oak leaf before it hits the ground, you'll stay healthy the following year.
Carry an acorn against illnesses and pains, for immortality and youthfulness. Carrying any piece of the oak draws good luck to you (remember to ask permission and show gratitude.) The Oak trees essence helps boost energy levels and the ability to manifest our goals.
Another interesting tidbit is that the tree's roots mirror its branches and stretch as far below ground as the branches do above. A great example of "as above so below."
From Encyclopedia of Magickal Ingredients and A Modern Herbal
Oak Leaf and acorns on my altar. Full moon Mojo- Tarot cards (Moon & King of Pentacles), Citrine, Amethyst, Malachite (raw and carved panther), healing stone, Natural Quartz covered in red clay. Lucky $2 bills.
So for the April Show, I announced that it will be my last show till August. I know for many this raised some eyebrows. I have been dropping hints about my new upcoming project. I am taking a break from the scene so I can focus on this project. I have told a select few people and I am now sharing this information with the world. I am writing a book. This actually has been in the works for several years, however it wasn’t until recently that the publisher and I were able to come to an agreement. I sincerely believe that the stars align for a reason.
Everything that has happened for the last several months has prepared me for this project. If it wasn’t for that which wasn’t needed, being cut from my life then I would not have the time to focus on this project. I will be accomplishing one of my life goals and embarking in a new stage in life. This is an opportunity that I believe will allow me move in a new and much more fulfilling direction. Does this mean I will stop performing all together? No. I believe not. The stage is a drug all of her own. She just won’t be my main addiction anymore. When your drugs aren’t fun anymore. You need to take a break from them.
For the last several years I haven’t been able to focus on what I truly want but have been putting my energy into other peoples projects. I realize now, that in order to accomplish my dreams. I need to focus on me and what is best for myself. I am re-evaluating what is important to me and many things I thought were important simply are not. I am cutting a lot of baggage emotional, physical and material. So that when I re- emerge I may soar higher than I ever have because I no longer have those things holding me back.
Remember, Never forget your dreams or you will spend you life lost, looking for them.
This past weekend I got to fulfill one of my childhood dreams I got to dance on stage with a professional dance company. I hope sometime in the future I may do so again. I had the honor of performing with Atrek Dance company. In two shows entitled “Conversations in Concert.” My parents attended Opening Night making it the first time that they have seen me perform as an adult.
Atrek Dance Company is a Not for Profit Dance Collective dedicated to the development of local contemporary modern dance programs. Conversations in Concert was a show based on the feminine experience. What it means to be a Mother, Sister, Mentor, Friend. Atrek was looking for women to represents the diversity of women. As Diana Barrios (Director) stated, she didn't feel she could accurately represent all womanhood with only a group of 20 something dancers. She wanted to bring in people from different backgrounds and experiences to complete the concept.
I wanted to push myself and try new experiences. This was a new experience for me to take a step back. To follow and not lead, to not be in control. I found it completely unnerving and had to face many of my insecurities. I took the opportunity to step outside my normal comfort zone, into a place where I wouldn’t be as good as everyone else. Where I even though I was well known and had more at stake if I publicly failed or made a fool of myself. I knew that I had to take that chance that this was an opportunity to grow as a person and as an artist. Growing is an uncomfortable thing. If it is not then it is not growth. Grow I did and I am forever thankful for the ladies of Atrek for allowing me to have that opportunity.
Being a part of this show was very important to me for several reasons. One of the many is that I could represent a plus size women in a field that being plus size is detrimental. I have been on stages all over the Midwest dancing in my knickers. Being plus size I had overcome the not just the usual roadblocks that every performer has faced but the additional hurdles that come with being plus sized. So while many women in the show represented Mothers, Daughters and Wives. I stood there for Plus Size Women Everywhere!