This is someone else’s picture of our snowy corner of Ontario (courtesy of the Weather Network), but this is the world I awoke to this morning. :> I’ve had my Cailleach shrine lit for a couple days in a row now, and I find myself genuinely happy about the weather, even when it’s slashing down rain and cold wind and it’s making others miserable.
It’s been a long few weeks. I’m now on Week 4 (out of 6, fingers crossed) of my IV antibiotics at home. My foot is slowly healing, and I’m hoping that goes for the osteomyelitis inside, as well as the wound on the outside.
I have spent a lot of my time being bored, and very grumpy, but I’ve felt that lifting in the last week. I’m not in the same dark place I was in October. I suppose I’m getting over myself - I hate feeling useless and helpless, I hate taking assistance from others even more, and ever since I landed in the hospital I have entirely been relying on the kindness of family to keep my house clean and stocked with food, and to get what I need done. It’s been a hard thing for me. But I’m learning. I am grateful for the help. My mother-in-law, in particular, has been superb.
My own mother has been here a lot. The first time she came over (it’s a 5 hour trip, not insignificant travel) she stayed and cleaned (really, ‘stripped and disinfected’ is more accurate..the woman’s a germ murderer) and cooked. It made me nuts to not be able to do anything, but I’m glad to have a clean house.
This time around she’s been sewing me special liners for a big pair of waterproof boots that will fit over top the dressings on my foot, and keep me warm and dry. I can’t wear any normal shoes right now, and with winter here’s it’s a relief to have good footwear. I feel more than slightly spoiled.
My coven is also awesome, and I am grateful for them as well. They’re my family, too. Not only have I been getting the best of thinky-thoughts for my foot from them, they have helped me keep my Work going, when it came very close to falling apart.
So here I am, and that’s things. I’m getting better. I’m feeling a little bit better. I still get tired and am apparently ravenous all the damn time and sometimes there’s pain and the PICC line is inconvenient, at best, but…I’m at home, I get to sleep in my own bed, people are feeding me and taking care of me, and I still have my foot. I don’t think I get to ask for more than that.
Pagan Insights Project - Prompt: In Your Own Words
Getting ready for some of that ‘lousy Smarch weather’: Rain-snow-srain-rnow-sleet-slush-ice-what?-Youwannagoout?-hahahaa. Yeah.
We don’t have spring so much as a lot of piles of grey-white granulated ice piles that float in yards and fields like so many beached icebergs, and the mud those melting icebergs make. What people think of as spring doesn’t start happening here until May.
But hey - I have seen some sap buckets going out onto the maples. And a little bit of green is creeping into my dreams. It’s always a good sign the winter is retreating.
The crows are coming back. I’ve missed them, of course. Nice to hear them in the neighbourhood.
Not much else going on. Keeping the hearth-fires banked.
Ladies and gentlemen, love is brown.
Which is both a little funny and a little odd. But I mean that.
Let’s look at brown for a minute. It’s not a flashy colour. It brings to mind all kinds of concepts: solidity, earthiness, dependability. It’s stable. But it also conjures up others: boring, plodding, menial, utilitarian. It is, at best, a mixed bag for brown.
When my husband and I were betrothed, we stood at the gate to the circle and were asked what had brought us to that place. The traditional answer, of course, is love. My husband and I both answered ‘Brown’, simultaneously. (Which is an indication of how seriously we might take anything, but still…)
But I rather like the idea that love is brown. I am rather at odds with the high-flown chivalric notion of romance that permeates our society. I am not a damsel in distress. Nor do I need to be swept off my feet with grand gestures that are mainly empty. That kind of love doesn’t bring much to bear on my everyday life. As much as I’d like someone to take me away, sometimes, the fact remains that I will still have to vacuum my floors and wash my dishes and clean the bathtub and change the cat litter.
Look at it this way. No amount of a fancy sauce will save a poorly cooked pasta. No amount of high-test tuna will save bad sushi rice. And no amount of even the best-intentioned huge romantic gestures will save a relationship that doesn’t have a solid foundation. All it does is patch over the cracks for a while.
Brown love is hard, sometimes - you gotta own your shit, and take responsibility for the things you do in and to your own relationship. You have to talk AND listen. You have to be honest with yourself and your partner. I think that’s why a lot of people prefer the big splashy showy things once or twice a year - it’s a lot less work.
Brown love is practical - a whole lot of little things. Like taking the extra time to separate your socks before throwing them in the laundry. Feeding the cat in the morning so I don’t have to. Spending time together wrapped up in a blanket, watching tv and talking. Coming home from the store with something I forgot to put on the list, but needed anyway. And a hundred other things. And everyone has a list like that - things their significant other does for them that aren’t showy or even special, but they love them for it.
It doesn’t exclude singles. We don’t all need or want a partner. We don’t all have one all the time. But we can love ourselves, and appreciate what we do for ourselves. It’s just common sense. Love the one you’re with - even if it’s you.
Brown love isn’t stuffy. Sex is beautiful - and ridiculous - and fun. You can talk and laugh or fart during sex and it won’t change that. And if you’re not interested in sex, that’s ok too. Sex doesn’t equal love.
No-one has to have a perfect body. Grey hair, body hair, wrinkles, scars, pimples…come as you are. Earthy, basic, nobody’s perfect but we’re all perfectly fine.
Sure, you’re still going to fight, and have things you will never agree on. You will still have to learn to accommodate your partner’s habits, and vice versa. Compromise happens. But I think that is part of love, too.
Take this rambling post for what it is. I don’t get into gooshy emotional territory very often, but these are thoughts I keep coming back to, and I believe them. I really hope that beyond the crass commercialism of Feb 14th, and our society’s fetish for ‘perfect ideal romantic love’, that there’s people peeling back the wallpaper to find brown underneath.
After all, what can brown do for you?
So far the New Year has been….bumpy. At least it has been on my computer. But I’ve managed to tidy up that nonsense.
January always seems to make a rough landing and then clear up before Imbolc. I’m hoping so, at any rate. I seem to spend all my time in January cleaning up one thing or another. Maybe it’s a peculiar Virgo sickness - I cleanse until Imbolc, and then Imbolc is all about cleansing anyway. :p
Winter has settled in deep, for the first time in many years. It is wild and white and powerfully cold. I have missed this particular magic terribly, but am equally as glad I don’t have to leave the comfort of the apartment much.
I am (touch wood) doing okay with my brain right now. I haven’t had ungodly migraines, and while sometimes it takes me a fair stretch of time to fall asleep, I am actually sleeping. I still find myself in odd moods, but the anxiety I had thanks to the computer has kindly vanished.
My dreams are totally bizzare, but I’m chalking that up to a cluttered subconscious mind and the fact that I’ve been wearing onyx jewelry to bed. Normally I wouldn’t, but the onyx is part of some healing work I’ve been doing so I’ve left it on. It is working well, so I’ll just deal with the dreams as they come.
I have had the urge, lately, to make some jewelry for peoples I know here on Tumblr. I have a propensity for doing that - I just love making things for people as a surprise or a treat. I never need a holiday as an excuse or reason for gifting. Actual sales of my jewelry have gone down to a crawl, and I’m starting to think of it as just a hobby again; I don’t feel anxiety looking at my bead boxes anymore, worrying about what I do or don’t have, and what I do or don’t ‘need’. I like the breathing space.
I do have some very special-to-me pewter pieces I’d like to bead up, all animals and birds and fish. They’re my grandfather’s work, and something I’d like to share with others, as spiritual pieces. But I have to think about it still.
I suppose I’ll end this with something I don’t normally do:
Part of January cleansing almost always includes shearing off my undercut.
Did you know that if it’s 21° Celcius outside and your humidity is at (or near to) 100% that makes it 32° Celcius?
Summer is not dying gracefully this year; not that that’s a surprise given how it bullied its’ way into life in what should have been early Spring.
If I don’t sleep again tonight I will be getting up and working on some things I need to do. Insomnia sucks. I have been sick for a week, though, and I’m really tired of being overheated and irritable. :( Not sleeping doesn’t help. But if I’m not sleeping, at least I can take advantage of the relatively cooler nighttime, and work on the projects piled up everywhere.
While it’s still ridiculously hot, my ash tree is getting yellow around the edges, and the maple in the back is tinged with red and orange. My mind, body, and spirit are already on the same page with the leaves. I hope that the weather gets it together with the calendar soon.
I’m still not sick of indigo.
I am thinking of designating October as ‘wood month’. I have so much wood stored up for wands and whatnot that it can’t hurt to get busy with it. Hopefully I won’t burn out. And school is back in, so I can send a couple of the larger pieces of ash with my husband - the woodshop at the school he works from might be able to cut them down to flat coins for me, so I can make some rune sets.
Ok. Just ran out of braining. Never enough spoons to run the brain coherently for long.
lost dreams, found.
I remembered a dream this week, one I had a very long time ago. It is a dream which I have not shared before.
I’ve had recurring, detailed dreams my whole life. They tend to build and extend - over time many separate dreams have managed to link together into others. They only tend to reoccur when I am still working through them, and then I move onwards.
When I was 7, we lived in an old farmhouse. I loved that house. It was huge, full of empty spaces and window seats and places for a little girl to get lost in. My bedroom was upstairs, and the window practically touched the trees. The thresholds of the place always felt thin. It was in this house I feel that I become more sensitive to the spiritual world…maybe with a connection to the physical sight I lost there. (I began wearing glasses in that house.)
I still remember the dream very clearly. I was outside the house, when a line began to show on the lawn. My family was standing nearby, but were not with me. I watched as the grass sank, a large rectangle of earth sinking to form a staircase that vanished into the ground. Rusty light spilled from it.
My family stood woodenly and watched as someone (I still don’t know if it was a man or a woman) came up the stairs and took my hand, and began to lead me down. I looked back at them, but whoever was leading me said they couldn’t follow where I was going - I had to go alone. My family turned and walked away without looking back.
I had this dream many times. It was frightening. I was not raised religiously, but I felt like I was being taken to Hell. I didn’t understand it. I had no frame of reference for it, and felt abandoned by the only constant thing in my life - my family. I told my mother about it, but she pretty much told me it was stupid, and I should ignore it and not tell anyone else. This did not help. Eventually I stopped having that dream, and had others. The dreams have gotten no less confusing over time, but I have a much greater sense of context for them, and work through them. All except that one.
It wasn’t until recently that I remembered, and was able to see it differently - the beginnings of my journey, a passage to the Underworld, a guide to help the way. It is certainly a place my family cannot follow, and certainly none have tried. There was no way for my 7 year old self to see what would come.
Interesting to look back and see a place where perhaps things began, long before I thought they had.
1) I don’t like steampunk. There, I said it. Doesn’t do a damn thing for me. I understand the components of the thing, but I see no aesthetic in taking something that was lovely or functionally Victorian in its’ own right, and sticking a bunch of brass stampings and gears all over it. Or taking something mechanical that was perfectly fine on its’ own and trying to make it look like it belongs in a tea parlour or an Egyptian tomb. Bleck.
2) I loathe Regretsy. Don’t get me wrong - I am full of more than my fair share of schadenfreude, and I am not really a very nice person. But I also go out of my way to avoid stirring up too much shit, and I like Wil Wheaton’s “Don’t Be a Dick” rule as a rule for living. Yeah, so some people make some whacked out stuff. You don’t like it, don’t look, and don’t buy it.
So there’s that.
Not having great days, lately. Adding some postal fail to that this morning isn’t helping. :\ I’m not here much…wherever here is.
It’s nice that people find their paths. It’s wonderful that there are a myriad of pagan paths out there to be trod - different strokes for different folks, and all that. I’m glad there is diversity. I like seeing all the different pagan religions.
But I get -really- tired of people using Wicca as something to point to as ‘pagan lite’. It’s nice that you feel you went ‘deeper’, or ‘harder’, and that your magic is real, gritty, raw. But guess what?
So is mine. My gods are not cosmic Barbie dolls. My path is not escapist fantasy. I am not love and light. I am not glitter and pixie farts. And I never will be. My work is blood and bone, fluids and feathers and fangs, dirty and just as fucking real.
I am a Wiccan. And I don’t appreciate the implication that those of us who do find a home within Wicca, who are called to that path, are not as serious, not as deep, and not as willing to get our hands dirty and do the work.
And for those who really believe that, and will continue to hold Wicca and Wiccans up as flaky or fake, as the first stop on the way to ‘real’ pagan paths, as shallow and unappealing? A hearty ‘Fuck You’.
dark of the moon.
I have so many new shiny things coming in the mail soon. The only thing about shopping online: the waiting’s the hardest part. I am not known for my patience. Keep an eye out for new labradorite in the future - the last few pieces I made sold in less than a week. If you like it, buy it ASAP - otherwise you’ll miss it.
Worth mentioning: I also take commissions for custom pieces, and I’m happy to work within a fixed budget if that’s a concern.
Last night of the dark moon tonight. I dedicate this night to one of my patron goddess, and spend some time with her shrine, communing and sometimes meditating. So imma do that later.