Forty-two days. Ninety-four days. Two-hundred and sixty-two days.
Countdowns. There are all kinds of events that occur. Each one has meaning. Each one brings something into our lives. The three above? My trip to Ireland, the start of Pantheacon, and the start of Many Gods West. There are plenty of others to add to the mix as well. There’s the upcoming Gulf Coast Gathering (one-hundred and twenty-one days), and so many more things. And those are just the events that are known. There is always something right around the corner. In short, things happen.
Its been a short while since the surprise election of Donnie as President. Its done. There’s nothing left to do, except to brace one’s self for the coming four years. That, and prepare to fight on various aspects of legislation that his administration will attempt to pass. Essentially become the “loyal opposition.”But there are a lot of other things to handle as well.
Honoring and working with our respective Gods, Goddesses, Spirits of Place, Spirits of Ancestor, and one another continues on. For me, its time to get back to that focus. For that is what builds my inner and outer core, and gives me the anchor to be the strong support where others may have need of me. That means getting back to daily practice. That means continuing my studies. That means remembering those who have passed beyond the veil. That means continuing to find ways to support the Water Protectors at Standing Rock – and elsewhere. That means finding sympathetic magick to work. Yes, you are reading that correctly. I said working magick. That means spells, that means prayers, that means offerings, that means listening to the Gods to see what They may ask of you. The storm is here, we need to be ready to do what is asked of us.
Part of this aspect of sympathetic magick for me comes in the form of writing these blog posts. Writing off the top of my head is a fairly easy thing. I sit, I think, I type. I don’t write to be a BNP (Big Name Pagan), nor am I an especially gifted writer. I have always been aware of that. No, I write to share ideas and thoughts. I write to put my thoughts out in the open for others to read. My hope is that it starts people thinking about topics. My hope is that those thoughts turn into tangible action of some sort. My hope is that it starts the ball rolling for others.
I don’t write to tell people what they should or should not do. I don’t write to try and create definitions or labels that can be pinned on others. I do my very best not to create boundaries of “this is what this is”. Sometimes I am not successful at keeping that out of what I write. I’m human, after all. But I try my best. No, my desire has never been to have my name in lights or to be idolized by a group of folks. I’m just not built that way.
But one of the bigger things to have come out of this election cycle for me has been the issue of self-care. Its really difficult for me to be helpful, when my blood sugars are low and I have not eaten. Except that I am not always aware that I have not eaten in a while. I am getting better at noticing the mood swing, and the overt dizziness (hush!) that is associated with a crash in my glucose levels. And I am a terrible diabetic, in that I don’t always handle my medications the best way I should. Which means that I am needing to develop better habits where all of this is concerned. And that’s merely one area of self-care.
Before we can be the support that others may need, we have to make sure we are taken care of as well. Hydrate. Eat regularly. If you take medications, stay on the appropriate schedule. Take breaks. Meditate regularly. Pay your bills (as dumb as that sounds – its sometimes over-looked). When others come to you, you will need to have things taken care of for you, so that you can be the strong support that they will need.
Set small, attainable goals for yourself. For instance, with the holiday season coming up, make meal plans for the holidays. Include others. Don’t be disappointed if they turn you down. You still offered. Plan the meal. Make healthy choices. Make appropriate meal portions. Try something different for part of the meal. Make a goal to get outside and walk two miles every day. Or if you are a runner, get out and run. Turn it into a daily goal. Celebrate when you reach the milestones. If you know someone reaching those kind of personal milestones, celebrate with them.
Reach out to your local communities…even if there is some distance between you and them (physically or what-not). This is the time where we need each other more and more. This is where our connections with others will need to be strong and grow even stronger. I know there is always some kind of bickering that goes on within a local Pagan community…just sayin’. Put that to the side for a while. Focus on getting stronger, more intentioned (is that even a word?) communication and connection. We will need one another. You might not need others, but some of them may need you.
I am one of those folks that stands back and watches. I look for trouble to arrive, and when I spot it, I move to intervene. That’s the role I am most comfortable with. I also realize that I need to become more comfortable with other roles. Priest, leader, and the occasional role-model. None of those three things I am comfortable doing. But comfort no longer matters. Need surpasses any aspect of personal comfort. All I can hope is that I will do a decent job of fulfilling those roles.
Consider this: every single one of us will eventually have a role to fulfill during the storm. Some of those roles will not be comfortable or familiar. Where do you feel yourself being pushed? Are you resisting because of a lack of comfort or knowledge? Spend some time querying your Gods. Perhaps They may share with you some of the reasons why. Perhaps They might push you to someone more comfortable with those roles to help mentor you along. All of that matters now. More than it ever has before. And remember, the Gods don’t work on countdowns.
Just some food for thought…. #sayin’