It Can Only Be Taken….If I Allow It

Never let another person take away who you are. You have so much strength, power. You allow it to be taken away, it’s not taken from you. YOU allow it. Pull it back in. Take CONTROL. You are a warrior. You are in control. Things don’t happen to you, you ALLOW it to happen. YOU are a WITCH. You have the power of the GODDESS in you. DO NOT allow it to be taken away.

This was something that a dear, dear friend of mine said to me this week as I sat in the midst of a gigantic pity party I was having.  I had allowed something that someone said to me in anger wipe away all memory of who I truly was. I allowed feelings that had not interrupted my brain for years to come flooding back into me like a tidal wave.  I let every ounce of self-doubt smack me up-side the head.  I didn’t think that I was that fragile….but my self-esteem shattered like a mirror that had been hit with a sledge hammer.

It took the strong words of a dear friend to help me to realize that I am stronger than mere words.  I was answering accusations with pure, raw emotion.  I had to be reminded that there is more to me than emotions that can be shattered at the drop of a hat…..hell, I have been through my own sexual abuse, the death of a partner and countless other crises that made this one seem almost insignificant.  How did I originally respond?  I pissed and moaned and felt sorry for myself.  I pouted and sulked.  I forgot what and who I was.

For a while, I was having trouble finding myself in the middle of a crisis.  What did it take to help me find my way out?  It took loving words lined with just enough “swift kick in the ass” in it.  I had forgotten that I am a witch and that I have something to work with that can make all the difference in the world.  I have Magick!

I settled in to make some Witches Salt.  I scraped the bottom of my cauldron with a spoon and combined it in my mortar and pestle with some black lava salt and ground it into a fine powder.  It was time to banish some negativity.  I needed to get rid of negative emotions, negative self-talk….I needed calm, peace and my sanity back.  I lit the candles, opened the circle and then proceeded to put the Witches Salt everywhere that it needed to be.  After the ritual, I thanked the elements and closed the circle. 

I slowly walked down to the pond…..that is the one place where I feel completely me and completely magickal.  Friz walked leisurely by my side.  I looked down at him and I saw the hair on the back of his neck begin to bristle up.  He saw something that he didn’t recognize and he started barking uncontrollably.  I tried to quiet him down, but he continued to bark.  No matter how hard I tried, I could not get him to calm down. 

A thought raced through my mind. “A chihuahua is going to be a chihuahua, no matter what.”  Little did I know that was what my dear friend was trying to get through my thick skull.  “A witch is a witch, no matter what.”  I have an obligation to myself and to the Lord and Lady.  I am to be the strongest, best me that I can be….no compromise….no faltering.  I have all the strength and power of the wild God…..the stamina of the Horned One.  I also carry the strength of the Warrior Goddess….the power over those things that would try to conquer me. 

I need to show myself for who I truly am.  I have the power of generations of Ancients surrounding me and inside me.  I only have to access that power.  It is as easy as lighting a fire in my cauldron.  As I made myself comfortable by the pond, the herd of cats came padding toward me.  Again, I am reminded….I have to be who I was created to be.  The only reason that flame can be snuffed out, is if I allow it.  I must stand guard over that flame.

My favorite quote from the first Harry Potter movie will suffice.  “You’re a wizard, Harry…..and a thumpin’ good one, I’d waiger.”  Yes, I am a wizard, witch, sorcerer, magician…..whatever word you want to use.  It is just a matter of semantics.  It is my choice as to how good, bad, weak, or strong.  From now on…..I choose strong.

Blessed Be!

How Do I See the Myself I See?

Here we are at Mabon. The fall of the year is upon us. Before we know it, it will be Samhain and then Yule and then wheel of the year will start over. This week has been another week of self discovery along with a week of frustrations.

I took some extra time at the pond this week. I needed the relaxation in the midst of a week that was whirling around me. I dealt with a bout of the flu earlier in the week. I am one of those people who don’t like to be slowed down when I am sick. I don’t like to miss anymore work than I absolutely have to….so with Zpac and vitamins and alot of fluids in hand. I trudged forward. I missed one day of work, but oooh was I mean the rest of the week. Now, by nature, I tend to be very fun-loving, caring, gentle….you know, all those warm fuzzy things—but when I am sick….watch out.

I realized this month that the veil seemed to be thinning earlier than usual this year. Especially with the deaths that have happened in my family. My grandma has been ‘hanging around’ much of the time. I figure that I will entertain her until Samhain and then send her spirit on.

It just seems that so many people have had to deal with so many things this year. Sickness, death, finances…..seems like it has just been going non-stop. Memories and spirits have been high on my list.

One of the things that came to light for me in the past week was, in fact, my past. Now for those that don’t know, I was sexually abused from the age of 4 to 14. My way of dealing with this was years of counselling and eventually making my mind up that it had to be put away in a box that was never opened. My thought was that past is past. Move on. I don’t believe this had anything to do with me being gay….I had those feelings from what seemed like the day I was born. Our emotions have a mind of their own, so to speak. This became something that I dealt with on a daily basis.

It is amazing to me what we are willing to believe. I let myself believe the things that the abuser told me about myself for years. When I forced him to stop the abuse at the age of 14, I was told that the only reason he “did that for me” was because he felt sorry for me. I was too fat and ugly for anyone else to care for me. I was too much of a mental and emotional mess for anyone else to be willing to invest in me. Those were words at that time that I chose to believe. It is incredulous what we see when we look at ourselves through someone elses mirror.

It took years of me trying to prove this man wrong to start seeing my true self emerge. I was told I wasn’t talented. I went to New York and acted for a year. I formed musical groups and sang as much as I could sing. I was told I was fat. I starved myself into thinness. I became a gawky twig of a man at the age of 24. I was told that no one else would be willing to invest in me….I jumped from relationship to relationship and from man to man. Even though I thought I was proving something to someone, I was still holding myself to the standards of what I saw in the mirror he held up.

It was a crisp fall day back 10 years ago or so. I went to visit the person who, I felt, had put me through so much. It was time for me to break the glass in that warped mirror. I stood in front of him and told him that he was a liar. None of what he had said to me or about me was true. It was amazing to me what release I received just by putting a voice to that child inside of me who had been suffering for all those years.

When I got home that day, it was time for me to pull out my new mirror. Mine. No one elses. Mine. I actually stood and looked at myself in that mirror for a good long time. Now, when I saw “The Help,” alot of folks made fun of the housemaid telling that little girl, “You is kind, you is smart, and you is important,” but I have found over the years that the way we speak to ourselves is so very relevant. I look at it as a spell spoken over myself. I look at myself in the mirror every morning and speak the qualities that I want reflected.

Now you don’t have to struggle with years of abuse for this to be an issue in your life. Those were just my circumstances. We are all so guilty of measuring ourselves based on someone elses opinion. I have to deal with collections at work. I was beginning to get quite a reputation for being a bitch to deal with….mostly because people seem to treat you like it’s your fault when they don’t pay a bill. I started to see it affecting my personality. I was approached by a fellow supervisor at work a couple of weeks ago about an answer to a situation that had come up. She came to me because “everybody else is afraid of you.” Now that kind of slapped me in my face a bit. A little healthy respect in the workplace is one thing. Fear is another. I like to envision myself more as a modern day Dumbledore, not Dolores Umbridge.

I realized this week that I have allowed myself to slip back in front of someone elses mirror. I had started becoming what everyone thinks of collections people. I made myself promise this week that no matter what, I refuse to respond with anger to anger. I will keep myself in a calmer place. Nothing is worth my blood pressure jumping around like a spastic child. I even went to a fellow employee this week and apologized for a fit of temper.

So, this morning, I went to the pond. The breeze was dancing with the branches of the trees. That little blue chihuahua was right by my side every step. We passed a fellow with a bigger dog and that little blue chihuahua started kicking at the ground and barking and growling. It was obvious that he saw himself through his own mirror. He sees a wolf in the reflection. I had to smile. He also sees me in the mirror that I have made. He sees the gentle soul. He sees the nurturing, loving papa. I nestled under the tree with this little blue warrior and in the distance we see black and white cat coming toward us. I brought cat food this time….I just about never got that smell of sardines out of my clothes last time. He ate pretty close to us. Friz and I had started to drift off to sleep under that big old oak tree and we were both startled awake…..by the feeling of someone making biscuits in my lap. Friz leaned back with a look of disdain. I look down and black and white cat is getting comfortable right beside Friz. Friz leaned his head in, gave black and white cat a lick and we all drifted off again. I guess now I need to give him a real name.

Maybe the reflection I see in that mirror now isn’t so much a Dumbledore, but more of a Hagrid. LOL! The one thing we do have to be able to do is let that reflection change as we change. We all sat there in a clump under that old oak tree listening to the wind blow and feeling the coolness off of the water. This is the Myself I choose to see today.

Blessed Mabon!

Stirring the Pot

I was raised in the south.  In my family, you were taught not to show any kind of vulnerability.  That meant that any emotion you felt, you buried.  When you felt sad, no one knew it.  When you felt disappointed, no one knew it.  When you felt angry, no one knew it.  If anyone asked how you were doing, the proper southern response was, “Why, fine.  Thank you for asking.”  We all learned early to live behind a smoke screen.

Now, I was sexually abused from the ages of four to fourteen.  Who did it is not important. Why it was done is not relevant to this story.  I reveal this only to preface the fact that I had a load of hidden emotions buried deep within me.  I started going to a psychologist at the age of twenty to deal with these feelings.  I went only because I was dealing with some depression.  Next thing I know, I am dosed with Sodium Pentothal and I am discussing the events that led up to the visit to the psych.

It really surprised me that I didn’t feel sad.  I did not feel numb.  I felt angry.  I was angry that someone took something from me and I essentially had no control over it.  He took my innocence. 

As I said before, with my family, it is all about saving face.  I was told to keep this to myself.  Don’t be angry at the person….it is all about the forgiveness.  Well, I listened carefully to what my mama and papa told me and then…….I let it fly!  I let every ounce of anger that had built up in me for all those years loose.  No dragon could have had more power behind it.  Looking back, I see now  that this is when I began to see glimpses of magick in my life. 

I had worked in the church for years.  I listened carefully as people again told me that I had to forgive.  I had to bury those feelings of anger and replace them with love.  I started studying the Bible even more.  God experienced anger.  God was a wrathful god.  Jesus got angry.  I researched other religions and faiths.

This was when I began to dabble in witchcraft (Oooooooooooo).  I studied the gods and goddesses.  I studied the Morrigan.  Hmmmm a goddess of war. It was then that I realized my destiny.  I did not have to hide or camouflage my anger.  I could use it—make something constructive of it.  I realized at that point that when you combine the anger with the workings of magick that you get a powerful result.  I am not talking about hexing people.  I am talking about pushing every ounce of that energy into the spellwork.

Many nights I have stood over the cauldron with a flame burning inside (me as well as in the cauldron).  As I started the magick with the anger seething deep within, I found that as I meditated on whatever the need was (whether healing, or financial needs, or protection), the anger fanned the flame.  It brought power  to the moment. 

As an example, I have a dear, dear friend who had to have brain surgery recently.  It was the anger at whatever was invading her body that brought the magick to a boiling point.  It was the love that I had for her that fanned that energy and pushed it out into the universe.

For these reasons, I never hold onto or hide my anger anymore.  I push it out, confront it, and move beyond it.  Sometimes you really just have to put into words exactly what you feel.  Once it is out there, there is room for the love and healing to take place.

Am I an angry person?  No….not anymore. I say what I think, when I think it.  Does that make me a bitch?  Sometimes.  Does it strengthen my magickal life?  Definitely.

There is a reason that Native Americans give war cries in their ceremonies.  It is a cry out to the Great Spirit.  My war cry is loud, piercing, and fierce.  It accomplishes all I need it to.