Friday, March 13, 2009

Out With The Old

Hmmm, full moon ritual last night honouring the goddess Hecate and working with her at the crossroads in our lives. The ritual included a meditation and I am a little freaked out in a reassured kind of way about what I experienced, if that makes sense.

I'm usually pretty quiet in groups but that is something that I have been working with to allow me to be comfortable being myself in all situations. I like group discussions and particularly the sharing that occurs but last night after the meditation I reverted to my quiet self. I wanted to share what I'd experienced but even with such a comfortable group of like minded sisters, I held back.

I guess I was mostly trying to come to terms with what I'd felt. The whole meditation was beautiful and I had a strong sense of *knowing* throughout, even with the parts of the meditation that described uncertainty. At the crossroads, I knew I had to turn right. As I listened to w.w. saying we were at a crossroads and were looking for an answer, I was thinking, 'But, I *know* which way to go' and as she was saying that we would turn to Hecate for the answer and that Hecate would tell us that we needed to make the choice ourselves, I was thinking, 'yep, ok, I know what I need to do and I'm not seeking Hecate for her to tell me the answer, but if she could just take the first few steps with me and maybe walk with me for a while, even though I know it shouldn't matter, it would still be so helpful'.

And that's what happened. She took my hand as I turned right at the crossroads and we walked. As we went, I saw many of the things that I knew I needed to do start to take shape and form a timeline (PM skills die hard). These were all of the things that I have been thinking about for some time but that I haven't been planning properly or, most importantly, hadn't been acting on. And as I kept walking, Hecate's presence was always there but I could no longer feel her holding my hand and as we continued further I started to walk a few steps in front of her without even thinking about it.

And, in the moment before w.w. started to guide us back to the crossroads, Hecate stopped me and turned me around to face her. She held both of my arms just above the elbows, leaned forward and breathed into my mouth. I felt the warmth of her breath around the lower part of my face and then I realised what she was doing so I drew in my own breath to accept her gift. Then, after what seemed like a lifetime but was over in an instant, she drew back and away up into the darkened sky.

And I kept walking and it was a little difficult as the meditation called to return to the crossroads, but that didn't seem right so I just kept walking onwards but returning to the present with each step forward.

As I thought more about it, the feeling of perfectness increased. This was the first time that I have really worked with a goddess and to have been given exactly what I needed and to see and feel it so clearly was truly inspiring. I'm hesitant to describe it as being kissed by a goddess, for, even though our mouths met, the purpose was for her to give some of herself to be with me after the end of the meditation, and the breath is so symbolic on many levels. To continue to have her with me without her there and to show me that my need for support would always be fulfilled by what was within me; so beautiful and I am so amazed still.

Another thing from the meditation that occurred to me today was how I was having problems visualising what I needed to leave at the crossroads. I had actually been thinking in the last few days about the need to release things so as to make room for the extra things I am seeking, but I hadn't been able to define it at any time. In the meditation, I threw a few words such as limitations, road-blocks, fear, self-doubt, etc into a "concept cloak" and took that off, leaving it in a crumpled heap on the earth but while the idea of leaving things behind seemed so right, I still didn't feel that I had that part sorted out properly. Today, I realised that I had also been planning a Detox. I'd bought a Detox pack earlier in the week and was tossing up about when to start it, finally settling on Friday for a number of different reasons. As I was making breakfast this morning, I was suddenly hit by the connection between detoxing my body and spiritual clearing (yep, slow learner, I know). So, perhaps traits are not what I need to leave behind at the moment but I just need to hit the old psyche as well as the mundane with a good clean out.

Day one of the Detox is going well. It's a 15 day course and I'm expecting to feel a little off over the next couple of days, even though I was fortunate not to have any ill-effects the last time I detoxed. I am really excited and am looking forward to further progress on many levels - out with the old, as it were.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Limerick Challenge

For each of my kids I've a limerick
Some came to me slow and some came quick
The oldest has two
And the second does, too
But for the third child I need one more rhyming trick

Want to help me? Here are the ones we have been singing for the last few years but I need another for the smiley monster:

There once was a boy named Kayne
Who was having a bath again
He pulled out the plug
And the water went 'Glug'
And he went down the drain

* * *

There once was a boy named Kayne
Who had a ginormous brain
'It was such a pity'
Said Ace, the middy
'That he is quite insane'

(Ace is one of our cats that I used to call mitty-mat as a play on kitty-cat because I didn't think Ace suited her and over the years this has somehow changed again so we mostly call her middy)

* * *

There once was a girl named Tara
Who wanted to play the guitar
She picked up the pick
But she gave up too quick
Without even learning a bar

* * *

There once was a girl named Tara
And she could run very far
She ran so fast
But she just couldn't last
So she ended up taking the car

* * *

The once was a boy named Riley
And he was very smiley
For one of his smiles
Well, I would walk for miles
Although he does give them quite shyly

So, any suggestions on Riley's second limerick?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Yep, I'm definitely up for it

Support. It comes in various shapes and forms, as does our dependence on it's existence.

Now, I'm not sure how much of this may apply to you, but I what I do know is that I, from time to time, find myself basing my decisions on how much support I feel.

Some of this centres on the types of people I have in my life, but I have to remember that support is not the only reason a certain person may or may not be in my life, regardless of my perception of the role they are *supposed to* play. I may turn to someone for support and if they don't deliver than I am usually inclined to have some sort of dummy spit or go off in a huff, either inwardly or outwardly. But that's really not fair. It's not fair on them because they obviously have value outside of this narrow expectation but it is also not fair on me because by doing this I am fostering co-dependence.

Alright, I am clearly heading down the 'virtues of independence' path here. The whole 'I can do anything because I am me' line of thinking and while that is wonderful, empowering and what I believe to be key to one of the few truths in the universe in that we, as individuals, can only rely on ourselves, that is not to say that we don't seek and value others, and rightly so. Gathering networks is tremendously important. No matter what the base tools are to success, we naturally work towards making our successes as easy and resistant free as we possibly can and having wonderful and supportive people on board is something we should all strive for.

But, what happens when we have a goal that we believe in but there is no one to support us? Do we give up on the goal? Do we allow our fear of failure to dominate our desire to try? Well, apparently so. In this situation, it is so typical to give up or to let go of our dreams just because we don't receive the immediate support that we want when what we should be doing is looking for alternate solutions.

The first barrier is the belief that we should only attempt something if someone else has offered us encouragement. For many of us, the fear or ridicule or negative judgement prevents us from even seeking that confirmation but if we do get so far as to float an idea to someone and we don't get 110% support, kind words and ego-stroking, then we tend to shrink back into ourselves and forget about the whole thing.

There have been a couple of things lately that I have been at this point with. I have wished dearly for support and encouragement and while I have been wise enough to understand that many people are so driven by their own ideals, failures or selfishness that they are not able to come to the party in terms of just 'being there for me'.

Being that I am stubborn and am increasingly better at decreasing my reliance on concern over the judgement of others, I decided that I just didn't need support. Life is, in essence, a solo journey. Yeah, ok, there are companions but for the most part is it is single pilot cockpit into which we are born so we'd better take hold of the wheel with both hands as there is only so much that the auto-pilot can deal with.

Yes, this is where I was at. I had a few things in mind and had raised them with the person that I most longed to support me and as the reaction was less than enthusiastic and I understood, non-grudgingly, that this person was looking after their own interests alone, I decided that I didn't need support and would have to just pursue things as I saw fit. And it harm none, do as you will, yes indeed, but these were things that I really wanted and knew that if I only tried then I was sure I could have a really good go at them. So I steeled my resolved and started to keep telling people of my plans without any expectation of support.

Then a surprising thing happened. I have a very dear friend of the kind that there will always be a comfortable click regardless of the time or distance between encounters. And it so happened that one night I was talking to this friend of mine and I spouted my spiel about one of my ideas without any expectation of support. And, what was forthcoming brought tears to my eyes through the separation of the phone line that connected us. His support was so evident. In his voice I heard the echoes of my own excitement and plans and promises to ensure he was there, some 45 minutes travel through his own family and one commitments, to be there for me. All this when the one I relied on had offered nothing of the sort.

At first my plans were explained at a very high level, but with his enthusiasm came more details from me and even more excitement from him. I found myself being very gratefully forceful in refusing to accept his presence as his show of support and it's kind of hard to explain without detailing my plan, but I don't really wish to talk through the details at this time.

Suffice to say, I had gotten over this ideal of support and was at the point where I truly believed that independence, courage and personal belief were the only tools I needed to achieve my goals and fulfil God's plan for me when out of the blue comes such touching and overwhelming true friendship and support.

Such is the way with my life. Just when I think I am learning God's rules to my existence and getting to understand that I need only rely on myself, I am given a deliverance of all that I have asked for, even if it is not in the way I expected or would have planned.

So, my question tonight is are my realisations false distractions and are these surprises deliverances on my initial prayers or are these surprises rewards for the realisations I have reached by believing that I know that all I need is me but God still wants to give me a helping hand so allows these deliverances into my life only once I have realised my own power that I need to act on?

Confusing? Hell, yes, and no matter what the answer is, I don't believe it will have any bearing on my choices this time and maybe never ever again.

All I know for sure is that tomorrow is a new day and I have grand plans for my future. Tomorrow is, literally for me, the first day of the rest of my life. And it is exciting, and scary, but necessary. I have so many ideas that I can no longer let them float around the never ending chasm that is my mind and I must now really start to help them to manifest themselves into reality. That may take some planning but it is something that I am definitely up for.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Resources for the Present and the Future

It's sometimes funny, and not of the 'ha-ha' kind, when the most curious of memories of people from our past jump to the forefronts of our minds. With more than three and a half years of memories to choose from in the particular stage to which my memory chose to turn, tonight my subconscious did not turn to the freedom, the exploration, the boundaries, the friendships, the betrayals, the abuse, the manipulation, the suppression, the confusion, the heart-break, the games, the love, the laughter. Tonight, my thoughts and memories were with bottle tops.

Thinking of where I am in my life at the moment, in one of the many ebbs in the flow of addiction, I can truly empathise with an understanding that may even surpass many of the original experiences. Yes, empathy is a blessing and a curse, and perhaps not even a true reflection of the reality of either, but however it may be for the party I am empathising with, for me it is very intense. That's the best I can do to sum it up. Intense. Yes. I feel.

The bottle tops were in the pockets and the pockets were in the jeans, as was the man-child. Scarred with the loss of a mother, the hopeless alcoholism of the father, the trapped maturity of the older sister and the failed protection of the younger sister, but with no excuse for the wanton and knowing impact on so many others that the self-abuse resulted in. That I was in that line of fire makes me sad for him, but also still so disappointed in myself that I wasn't stronger. I was told that I was strong but at that time I just felt so helpless in a proud and tough sort of way.

The jeans of the man-child fit well. Straight leg fit is the middle ground for all jeans fashions through the ages; some things are timelessly cool, regardless of the current fashion and I think straight-legged jeans are one of those things. Ice blue, crinkled and taut in all of the right places. How could a girl not admire that, and to have that in her reach whenever the whim took her, regardless of her age, well, it seemed all so good at the time.

How much to tell of the man-child? Indeed, how to tell at all? Even after all this time, how was I to know that the only word befitting of a summary of his existence is 'mistake'. Harsh? Yes, mostly, but better than flat our 'dead' which is the second choice. I am not a survivor, because for me I didn't feel the definition of the words that were so befitting without me realising, but I certainly have that knowledge that is somehow separated from the feeling, whether I want it or not.

So, we have the man-child, and we have the jeans, and then we have the pockets. Nights out when I was on his mind while he drank beer with his mates and I sat at home with my family, as any girl of my age should, until he came to call. At that stage, any beer was a good beer for him, but twist tops were the preference. Why? Because as the night wore on and the number of beers consumed became as blurred as ones sensibilities, the bottle tops sat like a subtle trophy in the pocket of the jeans as the only way to count how many beers had been consumed and to then wear the tally like a badge of honour.

Of course, the more bottle tops in the pocket of the jeans of the man-child then, logically, the more beers consumed on the evening and thus the testosterone-charged, alcohol-fuelled competitions raged - as did the various means to exceed regardless of the truths of the situation. From holding bottle tops over from previous evenings to surreptitiously accumulating bottle tops from others (thus increasing ones own total while reducing that of the competition in one fell swoop), all snake-like tendencies were gloated over by him and instinctually cringed from by me, yet without stepping away or removing myself completely as I knew I should.

There were so many signs that my head understood and my heart acknowledged the existence of but decided that, seeing that I was an intensely emotional being, it had precedence in all actions. And so I stayed.

And that, dear friends, is the crux of the matter. I thought I was being true to myself because I thought that following my head was supporting the stereo-type that my peers had created while following my heart was pure honesty. To me, allowing the image of myself that had been created by others to dominate was to relinquish control of myself, my choices and my life. I was struggling to find out who I was in the face of so many changes that I knew on one level to be huge but that I played down to things that I, as a young girl just entering into her teens, could deal with.

Maybe I was strong; that's something that I still haven't entirely decided upon and am anticipating may be explored in a different post in the not-too-distant future, but I didn't feel strong back then and was, in truth, floundering with no clue as to how to claw my way to the surface. My life experience up until that point was not full of challenges, competition, hard work or any exercises that would have had any positive impact on developing my character. I was stubborn: hell yes; intelligent: apparently; resourceful: instinctually and possibly genetically as well; but mostly I was scared. Scared that I was fucking up the rest of my life and was being resolute in the need to ensure that if my life was going to be fucked up then it was going to me who had the final choice over that.

And, my memories tonight, summarised by bottle tops, in pockets, of jeans that also contained the man-child, are difficult in all they represent of my failings but also inspiring in all they represent of my resilience. That I did experience, work through and grow from these times, with memories but no pain - well, that's an accomplishment, and one that I intend to use in my present as a means to secure a better future.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Red Artery and Blue Vein Dreaming

I dreamt that I was looking at myself in the mirror and that I could flex my muscles to make my veins and arteries more pronounced. Ordinarily I find the look of extruding veins to be gross but in the dream I was fascinated by them. I wore a tight fitting singlet and held my hands in fists clenched on either side of my head with my elbows at right angles in the traditional muscle pose and willed my blood to pump through my veins. My skin paled slightly then the road maps of red arteries and blue veins pulsed and expanded in my neck and arms with the throbbing pulse of blood evident as I looked on.

I paused and examined this detached biologist's manikin refected before me.

Then I ceased flexing and my reflection returned to being just me, in a singlet, before a mirror.

But, of course, I flexed again to ensure I was at the controls and was able to transform myself into this experiment, this living dummy. And the veins and arteries once again protruded at my will. And so it ended there...

Grandest of Ironing Dreams

I am ironing tonight, once again, and am taking this opportunity to transform the mundane into the extraordinary.

From the time of the first clothing, there were wrinkles. Social conditioning busied itself convincing us that wrinkles were *baaaad* and that they had to straighten up and fly straight. But how was this to be done? Why, the hot iron of course. But, oh! How tedious.

Fast forward to 1882 and the invention of the electric iron by Henry W. Seeley, which weighed almost 15 pounds (6.8 kg). Yes, things have changed, but how we still lament the need to iron.

But, is it the ironing we lament and resent as part of our weekly routine, or is it merely the lack of time to dedicate to this, a task that, in it's essence, reminds us of all we we have accomplished and all we are yet to achieve?

When you think about it, ironing can be extremely rewarding. It's rewards are immediately realised with the smoothing of those dastardly wrinkles that they may be forever banished - or at least until the next wash - unlike so many of our other daily chores. Clothing looks, feels and even smells wonderful as soon as it is ironed, and the accumulation of articles, replete in their crisp spender, is like a ream of fresh A4 pages on which we may chronicle the entirety of our present existence based on our heritage or the dreams that are still nagging for fulfillment in our lives. Yes, ironing is all that, yet we continue to insist that it is a chore.

And such is the way with so many things that we are now old and wise enough to revel in the joy of but yet we continue to consider them to be chores. Yes, we have to do them, repeatedly, week in, week out, but they are as rewarding as we make them. Having an excuse to plonk in front of the telly, albeit with an ironing board in between ourselves and the source of our pleasure, and stay put till then end of our selected televisual feast, is a treat that we still seem to struggle to acknowledge.

Ironing is not our enemy. Ironing is an ally that good time management will help us to reap the greatest rewards from. So, friends, grab your ironing boards and unite. We have the power to make the mundane extraordinary and the only thing standing in our way is a false sense of what we continue to believe that reality *should* be. Enjoy the results of your labour and know that in this isolated task we unite, members of a community that fervently believes that wrinkles are *baaaad* and that we, the lone rangers of the laundry, can rebel against in our daily adventures in what is the lives we lead despite our grandest of dreams.