Articles/Essays From Pagans
March 9th. 2014 ...
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March 2nd. 2014 ...
Lessons of Ostara: Six Ways to Move Forward
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The Secret Teaching: Selected Aspects
February 23rd. 2014 ...
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February 16th. 2014 ...
Death, Grief, and Psychopomp Work in Shamanic Healing
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The Allure of Glamour in the Apocolypse
Lunar Insight Planetary Preponderances: Year of the Horse, Imbolc and Mercury Grazings
February 2nd. 2014 ...
The Magick of Jewelry and Metals
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The Golden Bough: a Study Guide (Part 2)
January 26th. 2014 ...
Love of Self: The Hardest Thing To Do
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January 19th. 2014 ...
Open Letter to the Goddess
A Southern Girl's Guide to Hospitality
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January 12th. 2014 ...
Never Once Was There a An Athame Near My Chalice: My Very Sheltered Occultist Upbringing
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January 5th. 2014 ...
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Lunar Insight Moon Musings, Planetary Preponderances: Wise and Wild
December 29th. 2013 ...
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 3)
13 Keys: The Might of Geburah
Beyond The Season of Greed
December 22nd. 2013 ...
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 2)
December 15th. 2013 ...
The Hex Murder of 1928
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 1)
Lady of the Forest Mist (A Story of the Woods)
Lunar Insight Moon Musings: Hunting, Fires and Parting Shots
December 8th. 2013 ...
Help and Thoughts for Pagans New to the Journey
Using Your Wand in Reverse
Leaving a Group - Part 2: Leaving, Healing and Moving Forward
The Cry of the Soul
December 1st. 2013 ...
The Tarot as a Tool for Raising Consciousness
A Pragmatic Look at Neo Paganism
Leaving a Pagan Group – Part 1: To Leave or to Stay?
November 24th. 2013 ...
The Pagan and the Papacy
The Groovy Aquarian Christ: Jesus From a Pagan Perspective
November 17th. 2013 ...
For Love of the God
Which Witch? Philosophical and Psychological Roots of Wicca
A Threat to Religious Liberties?
November 10th. 2013 ...
Where did Aleister Crowley’s Influence on Wicca Go?
Thoughts on the Threefold Law/Law of Return
The Celtic Tree Calendar
Nine Creeds: A Statement and Explanation of My Beliefs
November 3rd. 2013 ...
The Mundane/Spiritual Mirror: What Does it Say About Your Life?
October 27th. 2013 ...
Thoughts On a Miley-Cyrus/ Robin-Thicke Society
On Being Wiccan: Some Unsolicited Advice
Pagan Religious Communities in your Area: Connecting With and Creating Them
Banishing, Invocation and the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram
October 20th. 2013 ...
Bottle Spells and Magick in Hoodoo Tradition
Weather Magick: Who is Responsible for the Weather?
Broom Closet: In or Out?
On Coven and Claws
October 13th. 2013 ...
Destroying to Create: A Lesson from the Dead
Consume the Scorpion- Scorpion Energy Revisited
October 6th. 2013 ...
UPG and U: A Breakdown and Building Up of Unverified and Unsubstantiated Personal Gnosis
Answering The Call from Spirit
Coping with the Loss of a Familiar
The Five-way Road: A Pagan Pilgrimage, Part 2 (The South)
September 29th. 2013 ...
Six Reasons Why Covens are Here to Stay
Priestessing and Titles: What's the Point?
Truth or Convenience? Questioning Motives for Spiritual Advancement
Speaking Up: The Conflict Between the Spiritualist and Our Human Experience
September 22nd. 2013 ...
Death of a Friendship within the Craft
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Recognizing the Maiden Within
Article Specs |
Article ID: 12872
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 1,989
Times Read: 2,704
RSS Views: 28,166
Author: Ruadh De'Sidhe [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: September 28th. 2008
Times Viewed: 2,704
If at thirteen you had asked me, away from my mother, what religion I was, I would have told you Wiccan. From a very young age I was fascinated with all things esoteric and occult. My early curiosity was well fed by watching ‘In Search Of’ and voraciously reading everything I could find about the occult. By the time I reached my teens I was clandestinely buying Llewellyn books with my lunch money. My fascination cost me. I was an outcast in the small Christian school I attended. I was bullied heavily and told by school administrators and my mother that I brought it on myself.
If you had asked me at seventeen, I would have said I was Wiccan and that I intended to raise the children I was carrying in my womb as Wiccans. My fiancé thought it was cool to have a witch for a girlfriend, even though we still claimed Catholicism for the benefit of his family and mine. We married and the military stationed us 1500 miles away from everyone we’d ever known in a heavily Christian area. With two children in diapers and a meager income, my marriage was struggling. In a true display of Catholic guilt I attributed all my problems to leaving the church. I put my Paganism aside and threw myself into being a good Catholic mother.
If you had asked me at twenty-five, I would have told you I was Catholic. I knew Catholicism was not a cure all but it provided something of a support network amidst multiple military moves. I was lucky to have two Marian priests in succession who were truly spiritual men. While their devotion to the Virgin Mary soothed my need for female representation in my religious practice, it also caused me to examine my spiritual shortcomings. I could not muster the same level of devotion or receive the same depth of spiritual connection the other Catholics seemed to enjoy. The third priest to at our duty station did not possess the same depth of spirituality as the previous two and was more judgmental about my marriage outside the church, which only increased my discomfort with my lack of faith. I remained with the parish only long enough for my daughters to make their First Communion. I justified my decision on the basis that if they chose later in life to be practicing Catholics they would have already fulfilled the prerequisite steps.
At thirty, if you had asked me what religion I was, I would have said agnostic or recovering Catholic. I was disenchanted with Catholicism; but still had guilt and fear about pursuing Paganism. I would attend Mass if my mother came to visit and sit through the service full of resentment. My inability to find my moors spiritually made me so uncomfortable that I ignored that aspect of myself entirely. I was adrift and depressed until we moved again and Sammie came into my life.
My daughters met Sammie at their new middle school and they became fast friends. If Sammie wasn’t at my house, the twins were at her house. I recognized in her everything I had loved about myself as a misfit thirteen-year-old girl. She became my third child, the child of my heart.
She introduced my girls to Tarot and Paganism through her own exploration and gave me a way to share my own experiences with all three of them. In return, I gave her an environment free from judgment that didn’t trivialize her interest as a passing phase. Recognizing myself in her, I became a better mother to my own girls. I thought a little more before I spoke, examined whether my advice was meant to help them find their own paths or to encourage conformity.
It was two years ago today, on a Saturday morning, Sammie passed away suddenly. There were things I could not share with the girls about her passing: the dreamed premonition weeks earlier that I dismissed because it made no sense, the sound of music in the house in the early morning hours that Saturday. I could not share the depth of my own grief with anyone. For my husband it was like losing a child and for my girls, like losing a sister; but for me it went beyond that because I felt I had lost the link I had found to the person I used to be.
Over time, my grief lessened but never entirely disappeared. Sammie was often in my thoughts. As the months wore on things would turn up in the house, a deck of Tarot cards, anime sketches of girls wearing pentacles. I could not shake the growing sense that I needed to go back and reconsider my spiritual path. I had a sudden inexplicable need to find a yoga class. The only one within reasonable distance was on the opposite side of town, past Sammie’s cemetery taught by a woman twenty years my senior named Monica.
I soon found that Monica’s classes went beyond just yoga. She offered Reiki, past life workshops, and a variety of healing traditions. It was exactly what I needed when I needed it for my spiritual journey. In her classes I have found the same environment I tried to provide for Sammie.
If you asked me now, at thirty-six, what religion I am, I will tell you I am Pagan. I have studied enough to know what I don’t believe, even if I haven’t totally decided what I do believe. Finally, I am OK with that. I don’t need to understand everything; I need to find joy in gaining understanding.
So today, I acknowledge Sammie’s presence and express my gratitude. Although I only knew her within this realm a short time, I am grateful to her for reminding me of the maiden I was, making me the mother I am, and showing me the crone I can be.
Now I just need to find a nice silver chain for that moon and pentacle pendant I bought.
Location: Ridgeway, South Carolina
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