Its mid-November here in Texas. Typically, the weather has already taken a turn for the colder at this point. This year is no different, although the weather folks are calling for temps around 80F during this weekend. The leaves have already started to change colors, thanks to two nights of near freezing temps just a few days ago. Wish as we might, the Wheel turns – and the cold nights of Winter will be upon us. Granted, it does not snow often in Texas – and when it does, its usually never deeper than a few inches. I can easily remember winters in Kaiserslautern, Germany where the snows were a foot or more.
I do miss the German mountains and forests quite a bit. I vividly remember long walks through forested area that was two-hundred yards away from my apartment’s front door in Vogelweh housing. The woods were thick with trees, and no matter the time of year or day, you had to strain your hearing to make out the sounds of cars on 270. Just on the other side of the trees was the little town of Hohenecken, which has grown significantly since my time there in the 1990s. The places I remember walking are now gone, having been replaced with family homes. But that’s the change of the Wheel. Time has moved on from my memories of that period of my life. Even I have changed since that time. I no longer wear the uniform of a United States military member (USAF). My hair is far longer – and turning grey at the edges. I carry my weight much differently – and there’s more of it now. The Wheel turns.
Like any person, my time here in this Lifetime is finite. My body will continually be ravaged by a disease that will eventually take my life (Diabetes Type II). How long that will be is a real unknown. I take the medications that my doctor prescribes to help slow the progression of the disease. Today, I will start on a needle injection of Victoza. I have a SEVERE fear of needles. Even giving blood requires a major gritting of my teeth to accomplish. However, oral medications are now at the max dosage levels, and my disease is once again raising its BGL to undesired levels on a regular basis. The Wheel turns. Much like an individual trying to survive the ravages of a strong Winter, I must make the choice of how hard I want to fight. And I have a strong desire to continue to live. I’m 48 years old now. I have a lot more to give to my community, my family, and so much more to experience myself. The Wheel turns. And I turn with it.
Every Summer, I take a vacation of an extended period. This past Summer was an extremely magical trip to Glacier National Park in Montana. Not only was the scenery completely amazing, but the feel of the Gods and the Kami were EVERYWHERE. For me, I did not even have to experience this through a quiet meditative state. I could feel them everywhere I walked. No matter the number of people around me or the commotion that they made. In contrast, a trip to Medicine Wheel in Wyoming – it was a side trip on the way back home from Montana – revealed a very quiet, serene location where very few people were. In fact, we were the only people at the site for nearly an hour before another group of visitors arrived. The stillness of the area, the majestic view, all the offerings left by others at the Wheel…really slammed the presence of the Gods down on your shoulders. Even spoken whispers seemed to be a violation of the presence you could feel. I have never been to either place until this Summer. This next Summer, I will make a return trip to Medicine Wheel – with tobacco as an offering – and my own prayers for the Gods.
There’s so much more for me to experience, and so much more that the Gods are wanting me to do. When I started this year, I was content with my little podcast “From the Edge of the Circle”…but the Gods kept pressing me to help showcase other perspectives, other ways of seeing the world around us, other ways of seeing through the veil. And I started “Upon a Pagan Path” to do just that. I am sad to see my little podcast disappear under the waves of the vast ocean of the internet. However, the Wheel Turns…and carries me forward. What experiences are the Gods pointing me towards? I have no idea, but I am excited and open about those experiences – and looking forward to sharing those moments with others. The Wheel Turns…