This year, I discovered my path.
Sometime during the summer, I claimed it. I wrote the words that I was exploring wicca. I have been reaching for something for the past ten years and the thing that felt the most true to me was paganism, witchcraft, being a witch.
Since that time, I have realizezed that I was not looking for a religion, or rules, or for a way to be dictated to me. I was looking for a path, a way of life, something wise and ancient. I was looking to explore and excavate the wisdom within, the knowing that I've had all along.
I have found a teacher who honors the earth, the elements, and those who came before her to share their wisdom and the lineage of sacred teaching. She is one who, in the words of Paul Coelho, " ... who inspires the student to give of her best in order to discover what she already knows"
I am stumbling forward on my path and I re-membering who I am. Sometime earlier this year, I started using the taglines on instagram ... gathering the bones, excavating the soul voice, re-membering the woman being. I was calling myself forth. In the same way that I had to discover myself as an artist some ten years ago, I now need to remember myself as a witch.
There's that word and all the baggage, judgment, negative connotations that comes with it. What do you think of when you think of a witch? Does it give you pause? Does it make you want to click away from my words? That's OK. I understand. It is a word, a label, that I have been hesitant to use because of what it might mean to others. I also am cautious because I have such great respect for others who have walked the path for years, who have practiced their whole lives.
But this isn't a matter of my deciding one day that I wanted to be a witch. This is my remembrance. This is my acknowledgement, acceptance, embrace of who I am.
When I speak of a witch, I speak of a healer, one who knows the power of the elements ... the air, the fire, the water, the earth. She is grounded in the knowing of plant medicine. She understands what the trees and the animals have to teach us She feels the vibration of stones and crystals and knows the energy that is there. She gazes at the moon and follows her rhythms. She looks at the sun and walks that seasonal wheel. The witch knows.
I've always been a witch but I forgot. In the name of religion, my knowing was rounded up, wrapped in fear, and banished. My poor mother never knew what to do with this high spirited daughter she was given. I truly believe that I came to serve as a way to remember the wisdom held by her and her mother and her mother's mother and further on and further on. I am on that quest now. I am on my path.
Nothing has ever felt as right, as true, as this.
A couple of weeks ago, I had a wonderful conversation with my niece and she asked me if the path of the witch has been helpful as I walk hand in hand with raw and deep grief. The answer to that is an emphatic yes. I am finding practices that feel like they are saving my life. I have something to believe in, to reach for. It's within me and all around me at the same time.
This is my path to (re)discover.