Article ID: 15965
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 622
Times Read: 3,523
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Author: Jessica Marie Baumgartner [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: June 13th. 2016
Times Viewed: 3,523
Love and magick are linked in ways that our energies seem to understand far better than we do. The influx of great power behind the deepest of emotions often leads to a surge of electricity. Itís a current that travels beyond the walls that society fosters upon us. Unfortunately, these links do not always last forever.
Our paths lead in many directions. Every person that comes into our lives has something to offer, but some bring more than others. The Gods seem to smile on certain situations, certain links. In my life I have been able to look back and trace exact events that led me to specific people.
I have spent the past 15 years enjoying the company of my x-husband. We have always understood each other, even if we didnít agree on everything. He is a true Taoist whereas I have been a Wiccan since we met, but our faiths always seemed to complement each other. It worked well.
I had a rough upbringing that lacked the stability children need and he had the cookie cutter Middle America life that everyone seems to wish for. Despite our differences, the energy he gave off helped me to draw more power from myself. I was able to harness deeper energies and perform stronger spells. Iíve never had a spell not work, but I am very selective of where I choose to intervene and always ask the Gods first.
Despite the peace this relationship brought me, I always feared that something was off. I was born to create. My talent for singing allowed me to play the music scene for a while. Despite my terrible ability to draw I do love to paint, and writing has always been a part of my lifestyle. The magick that seems to flow from me when working through a creative medium is unparalleled.
As I sank further into my relationship, I found myself having to let go of these outlets to be better suited for my partner. He never asked me to give anything up, but it was essential to make our relationship work and so I let go of those parts of myself.
It still hurts to know that I chose to lock so many aspects of myself away to try and focus on a relationship. At the time I had this romantic idea that I was choosing love over art. Art always seemed to make me crazier than I already was, it could lift me up but when it pushed me down, the lows were low. But you canít hide who you are forever.
Concealing that part of me worked for a time. It didnít bother me much when we got married, but I stopped doing spell work. I meditated and continued to celebrate the wheel of the year, but creating charms and working spells fell by the wayside.
And then I had my first child.
There is something about children that brings adults back to life. My 1st born reawakened the fire that had begun to die. She loved my songs, my stories, my paintings. I began to perform small rites with her and by the time my 2nd daughter was born I had a little coven of my own with two magickal babies who helped me to rediscover why I was born a witch and why I will die one.
As those energies began to recharge, something changed between my husband and me. I wrote a Pagan childrenís book and found a publisher so fast that I found myself in the midst of a writing career before I knew I had even started one. I was happy, but every time a new opportunity arose it seemed to distance me from my husband. He is a good person, and was as supportive as he could be, but I needed more. I needed someone to celebrate with me, someone to push me further when I was feeling down. He lacked the kind of enthusiasm that I always offered him.
His own work situation was not where he had hoped it would be and I know he struggled with that, but it began to follow him home. A dark air would surround him. I didnít notice it until our youngest daughter started refusing to let him put her to bed on the nights when he was home in time to do it. She began latching onto other men. It became clear that there was a problem when she befriended the cable guy one day and even cried when he left.
I grew so upset my husband didnít know how to handle it. When we separated I packed my candles, my oils, tarot decks, and magick books to help me gain some footing. I needed guidance, as we often do, and drawing from the Gods and my ancestors has always aided me.
Handfastings are traditionally supposed to be renewed every 5 years. I had wanted to keep up with this to help our relationship keep us bonded, but he was busy and we had kids so I didnít press the issue. A lot of the little things I had wanted had been pushed to the wayside in seven years of marriage.
The separation magnified all of these issues. I had hoped time away would make me miss my husband. Instead it made me realize that our relationship had been cracking for years. Pagan women are not known to sit around pining for men. I definitely donít have it in me. Once I realized that things were over, I made the decision to move forward.
Divorce isnít something that anyone wishes for. Being Pagan can be trying enough even in our more accepting times. My mother, who is a Christian, didnít support me at first. There were a lot of people who were shocked. But oddly enough my girls are the ones who really comforted me.
These brilliant little beams of sunshine reminded me of why I had been with my husband. Their reaction is what mattered most. They were happy for the split. My eldest said, ďMommy, Iím glad you arenít together anymore because now daddy actually pays attention to us.Ē Those words really cut into me. It made me realize how much I had taken on. We often do it without knowing.
The whole reason I wanted kids is to help change the world. Not only are they helping to do that, but they help shape me. Approaching divorce with the spiritual aspect has helped us to remain a family. Being able to connect with the Gods through my children and know that our relationship was not a failure aids me. Things have ended, but I am the better for it.
My daughters keep magick alive. Working with them to connect with the Earth and all of its creatures is my greatest legacy. I appreciate the Pagan ideal that marriage is a 5-year contract. Instead of feeling guilty for reaching the end of that phase of my life, I feel as if everything makes sense. There is little guilt and a great sense of accomplishment.
Despite this lighter side, the legal contract of marriage still needs to be broken. Thankfully my x-husband and I have found a way to keep our friendship in-tact and opted not to get lawyers involved. We went to the courthouse and filed ourselves. Together.
Establishing this new connection has been somewhat difficult. After you spend enough time with one person, the lifestyle change of living away from them can be quite shocking. Iím taking it as a new phase, one where I can work to try and balance my magick with my practical life.
Helping make the transition as easy as possible for my daughters is a huge priority. They cling to ritual and crave the little activities and spells that we do as a family to help protect our strengths and lessen our weaknesses. Meditation seems to be something that is more important for them than ever. At 6 and 3, both of my daughters will sit and focus themselves. Not for as long as I can, but the skill it takes for them to just wish to be in-tune with their own inner power astounds me.
Their father doesnít encourage this behavior. He doesnít discourage it; he just doesnít incorporate these practices into his daily balance. Thatís up to me. I consider it a challenge worth accepting to help maintain and create new constants in my childrenís lives in order to provide them with the familiarity and stability that they need to grow into happy, healthy, self-aware people.
All families are different. The shape of a family can take many forms. It can change. Working to accept the necessary shifts, while keeping a balance that nurtures the constants we all need in life is tricky at times, but thatís why we call it a path. You fall off it sometimes, veer off course when a storm hits. Thatís natural. It is to be expected.
Embracing the changes to help enter new ciphers can ease the shock. Accepting new beginnings and the closing of old ends will help keep energies up despite the upheaval of a major lifestyle shift.
Sometimes we must break bonds in order to enter new ones and maintain those that are meant to tie us for life.
Divorce, Pagan Parenting
Jessica Marie Baumgartner
Location: Saint Louis, Missouri
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