Anniversary…and stuff

Can it really be December already? I seem to have lost all sense of the passage of time since Sassy’s death. It feels as though that’s something that happened so long ago, yet sometimes–because her presence in the house as a spirit cat is so palpable–as if it could never have happened at all and that entire set of memories must be false. It seems like I only just got Pumpkin, yet that was really two or three weeks ago, and it occurs to me that I haven’t posted here since then.

It has been a busy, yet quiet and introspective, few weeks. I’ve been oddly nonverbal when not at the office, and have spent most of my time spinning while listening to audiobooks, or dyeing wool in preparation for spinning, or wet felting cords and balls for a jewelry line I’m planning. A selection of my yarn has been on display at work the past two weeks, where it met with a gratifying reception and I sold several skeins–which was heartening, considering the paltry one sale I’ve had on Etsy since my new store opened. (But then, all of my work–whether yarn or jewelry–tends to sell much better in person than online.) In two weeks I’ll be at the Pic-a-dilly Flea Market here in Eugene, sharing a table with a couple of friends from work, and then my daughter will be here from Philly for two weeks.

We still have so much to do around the house to get ready for her visit–most notably, get something for her to sleep on (probably an air mattress; we really need a futon for the living room but aren’t ready to buy anything quite yet). We have done some re-arranging of the living room already though in the past few weeks and now have two matching wooden book cases, onto which we’ve relocated our respective God-husband shrines. Here’s what that side of the room looks like now:

And here’s my new Odin shrine:

Yes, that is a coyote face (in lieu of the much more expensive canid, wolf) above the center of the altar. To the left is my statue by Oberon Zell, which I’ve had for going on a decade now, along with some iron keys (a gift from Him) and a gris-gris bag. In the center in front of the bust is a scrap of wolf fur, two poppy pods (Papaver somniferum, grown myself two years ago), a wolf tooth, and a bear atlas bone. To the left is the Odin drinking horn I commissioned years ago back east, a stone bowl that serves as my mini Well stand-in (complete with Eye), the top of a deer skull with antlers, and some of my found feathers.
I’m pleased with this arrangement, though I’m sure it will continue to be rearranged a bit from time to time…He enjoys having me fiddle with it, I think.

This Sunday, the 4th, is the ninth anniversary of my sacred marriage vows to Him. For such a momentous anniversary (nine being , of course, the number most sacred to Him), this one is so far proving to be rather…well, not subdued, exactly, but relaxed. There are no commemorative tattoos this year (the next one I’m planning, after the new year, will be a cluster of three sassafras leaves, for my cat who is now something of a spirit-familiar), no huge and earthshaking vows, no dramatic rituals. There will be some quiet personal time with Him tomorrow, and after that an intensifying involvement with the Hunt, leading up to Yule. But this year there is, at last, no one to whom I need to prove how serious I am, no one against whom I need feel pulled to measure myself, no one around me who I need fear will feel threatened by who I am or what I do. These types of people have haunted me for so much of the past nine years–whether at a distance or in person–that it’s almost surreal to have them gone at last. I suspect they are still out there, actually, and the only difference is that I no longer care. What other people disapprove of or might feel threatened by, concerning my spiritual life, simply doesn’t concern me. As I get older, I find that I am becoming more of who I am, who I was always meant to be. It isn’t a huge dramatic change or transformation, merely a process of not fighting it as I once did, letting go of all of the self-doubts and inhibitions. I have been married to Odin for nine years now, and it has not been an easy path; it has involved sweeping life changes, harrowing loss, and more time spent tearing down and rebuilding my inner landscapes than I would have thought you could fit into an entire lifetime (and I’m sure I’m not done yet). But I can’t pretend to be an oppressed, long-suffering spirit worker, because I wouldn’t trade this for anything on earth (or elsewhere). I know who I am, what I am to Him, what we are together. Nothing else is relevant. I think I have finally learned to let other people go, to let their petty jealousies and competitiveness slide over me and go on with my own Work. Not an easy lesson, to be sure, but the alternative is to drive myself nuts agonizing over everyone and everything–and I’ve certainly had more than my fill of THAT.

Of course, I could always just sic the Hunt on them.

Just kidding, of course.

Maybe.

Hehe.

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10 thoughts on “Anniversary…and stuff”

  1. I find I haven’t been speaking much either these days. Definitely an introspective time. I like how you have built your shrines on your bookshelves. That drinking horn looks amazing. What is engraved on it exactly? I’d love to see a close up. Congratulations on your anniversary to Him. Do you have a lot of spiritual tattoos? I have meaningful tattoos but not any related to my path yet though I have contemplated different ones. Isn’t getting older great for that? Not caring what people think anymore? Or even feeling the need to share personal stuff to feel validated? A real knowing of who you are. Could you elaborate more on what you meant with your work with the Hunt or is that too personal to share?

    1. This time of year is always rather introspective for me–a time of pulling inward; it goes with the season, but this year I’m noticing it even more than usual. Nine is a number of completion, and I’m seeing a lot of things in my life come full circle this year…

      I absolutely love my drinking horn! I commissioned it from a very talented artist (who is also a fabulous mead maker) from a kindred back east. “Odin” is inscribed on it in runes, and it is also carved with all of the Elder Futhark runes individually–not in order, but scattered around the horn–along with several of Odin’s animals (wolf, raven, eagle, snake) and a few other symbols. If I have time and can remember, I will take some close up pictures and post them.

      I don’t have many tattoos, but they are all related to my path. The very first I got was my valknut nine years ago; it is on my back over the heart chakra, just about where the point of the spear would emerge. I also have a snake entwined about my left wrist with runes spelling out Bolverk, and my Wild Hunt tattoo on my left shoulder (a Gebo made out of bones, surmounted by a crown with its point shaped like ash leaves), and on my right arm the matching tattoo I got with my partner Jo (our initials in runes, entwined with roses and pansies, which are significant to my path and hers respectively).

      Growing older has actually been great for me in a lot of ways; it makes so many things more clear. It also has taken away a lot of the silly self-consciousness I had in my twenties and thirties.

      Re the Wild Hunt work, it involves some very deep trance work, some ritual, and also my role of being a Gate for the Hunt into this world, which is what the oath I took last fall was connected with. A lot of what I actually do for it IS too personal to talk about, but I do share snippets of it here and there when I am able; if you search my blog for “Wild Hunt” a few things may come up. I’m going to try to post some less personal stuff about the Hunt in general and my thoughts on it this year, too.

      1. I read your Odin/Yule post from last year after doing a search on the Wild Hunt tag. Great post that! I too believe Odin is the original Santa Claus. I think that’s where the germanic St. Nick figure originally evolved from. There’s some interesting articles out there on the link between Santa Claus and the amanita muscaria mushroom that further elaborate on this.

      2. No, it was the one from Dec. 28th last year. I read the article you highlighted though above. Holy moly! What an amazing story. You could still remember all that detail after all this time, it must’ve left an indelible mark. I had an interesting what I believe was Odin encounter a few years back if you’d ever like to hear it.

        That book sounds really interesting. I’ve put it on my list. Here’s another one if you don’t know about it: Toads and Toadstools by Adrian Morgan. Beautiful and fascinating.

        1. Well, I remembered the bare bones of it and fleshed it out, which is why I refer to it as a short story (although it has been published as an “article” by a couple of magazines). Though it’s very true that it did leave an indelible mark on me. 🙂 I’d love to hear about your Odin encounter!

          I’ll have to check that book out, too, thanks!

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