30 November 2014

No I am not Perfect

Never have I said I was perfect, not a bit, not a lot not even an inch of perfect is wrapped up in me, I am what I am and life is what it is. I come from a respectable family and on the outside it is all lollipops and fancy crocheted socks, on the inside it was hard, lonely and lacking in direction. All I knew as a kid was that I was starved for love, so I looked for it, I searched and found what I thought was an all consuming love, a heart that called to mine and eyes that I could not look in without getting totally lost in the dream of a life filled with love that was all for me.  I wanted nothing more in my life at the time, just the feeling that I had when I laid in those arms, strong, young and in my innocence and stupidity of youth I thought love would win all the battles and we would be together forever....I didn't much think past that, I was 16.

I sit here 30 years later, exactly, looking back on the train wreck that was my life.....hell no I am not even kind to myself in some of that; even though there is plenty of them that already tear a strip every so often from an already lashed back, no matter how many times people tell you the past is the past it is until it involves them........then they have memories like elephants and me I am never allowed to let it go and move forward......so let me just rip the fucken bandaid right off and expose the wound in its entirety......I tell my kids all the time guilt is an useless emotion that serves absolutely no purpose, feeling guilty and doing nothing about it is well useless, what growth comes from it? what release? in truth though I still drag that bitch around with me like a proverbial anchor around my foot. I let everyone down. I got married and didn't even know how to make automatic coffee, imagine that! boiling an egg well that was even worse. If I had written this blog a few years ago I would trash him right here, tell you that he was a horrible monster, truth is we were children playing at being adults, neither one of us had many skills at this home making thing, add to that parents that never let go to let us fall when it would have been a smaller bump than the end result crash with three kids involved. Now being an adult and a parent I can see that partly it was done out of love, but the result was not good.....maybe it was a way for them to make up the existence of a child that felt so out of place even in her own room that she ran to uncles and aunts, anyone that could see the hurt and loneliness, that offered a warm hug and a grandmother that just enveloped you in love......it is what it is and it was what it was.  I am not perfect.

Today I am faced with change, growth and stepping out of that old skin every day a bit at a time, one foot in front of the other....sometimes I look back and I think my life started when the other one ended, I do not recognize that person anymore, but every so often the fallout reaches my shores, I am once again reminded of who I was, what I walked away from and once again I am forced to feel the pain of the past, the moments that should be happy and I should cry tears of joy end up creating tears of pain and anguish for those that I lost along the way to reclaiming me, for their lack of understanding and inability to let go of the past and move forward and for what I know will come knocking at their doors for their judgments, my own flesh and blood; people wonder why I say that blood is only what we are forced into but it does not connect us, hearts do that, the will to want more, the love that is born out of purity not obligation.  Obligation is ego in disguise, do the right thing in the eyes of those watching so that you may receive a great pat on the head and smiles of acceptance....yea long as you are a good girl, guess I was born wearing the black cape already.

All of this at times makes me buckle under the pressure and the weight of everyone that still relies on me today....so I write and I bend wire, I create and I apply magic where the pains still surface, I send love to what I cannot fix, and I pray for their release as well as mine....and today well this is the ramblings of a hurt old witch, I grew and became the woman I should have always been but it was not at no cost.....this is my day to sit and remember and cry the cleansing tears of release.....we all need that sometimes.....sending love and a slanted half hurt smile to those that want them today.

24 November 2014

New Moon Blessings

A blank page stares at me, my fingers itching to write, my mind filled with so many thoughts that it is so very hard to formulate but one to start with, and the events of the last week or so roll around in there....the happiness, the celebration of course followed by the disappointment and finally the stages of grief, and yes I say grief, not grief from the death of a loved one but the kind of ripping pain you feel when someone that you are connected to in a most fundamental way let's you down so much. That kind of pain that is with you even when you tell yourself that you are lucky, you are rich in so many other ways, surrounded by love and those that just want to uplift you but yet your heart yearns for only that one moment of recognition from that person that withholds it, knowing you deserve all the love they should be showering on you, expecting each year to be different but age only shows that nothing changes. Maturity, understanding and love reserved for death beds and moments of reckoning with their own gods, amazing how facing their own mortality can have that affect on those kinds of frozen, concreted and bereft of feeling hearts? and although I am referring to one specific incidence in my family recently, I could be drawing attention to quite a few of extended relationships that my immediate family members deal with. It is what it is, a big saying around our home it just is what it is, it really is not personal, as odd and difficult as it may be for some to get the concept of how it could not be personal since you feel like you are personally being mistreated, seems ridiculous huh? well way I look at it is the way someone else treats you is based on their own inner workings, when you are sure in yourself of your own beliefs, who you are, your own moral compass and you feel it is directed properly, by far none of us are perfect and all we can strive for is to be good humans, good people then when you do that and someone still mistreats you it is their issue, their personal problem to deal with not yours.

Cut and dried huh? well it has taken years of us discussing these things back and forth and many blended spiritual practices and thoughts to come to this place where we can deal with the realities of our relationships and lives with each other openly, without the blow ups of the past, there are still tears and moments of anger but they are more within our control and about expressing feelings without shouting and screaming, more discussions that run late and deep into the night and bucketloads of black gold. These moments are the ones we reach for old faithful energy lifting things like our favorite movies....this weekend it was Practical Magic, it actually has been that movie quite often...no not because of the somewhat unbelievable Hollywood additions to the magical moments, for moments of magic that you would find unbelievable I have plenty of them in my own life ~ remind me someday to tell you about the year the snakes came to roost in our home ~ anyway I have always loved the movie because of the two sisters, their strength, devotion and love of each other and their family but especially each other, the love story was secondary to me.....but watching it this weekend with someone else that although they have watched it with me often they have never really watched it like they did this weekend, well even for me it was an eye opener......as one sisters life unravels and the other steps in to help suddenly they could see how the first spell was suddenly coming to life, starting to weave it's energy, this brought up the most interesting discussion that ran two days about energy, how it weaves into our lives and connects us....about how it is adverse to our lives and those of others when we try to hold on to that energy and not allow it flow, back and forth, completing its cycle. Amazing isn't it that to anyone in this world the way a light bulb works with the flow of energy ever constant never stopping is so well understood, hell we even as kids created those lights with potatoes but yet so many of us have trouble understanding that same concept in our own lives, in our communities and with our own families.

It has been a very difficult stretch in the last five to six years now, there has been so much growth, so many things clearer now to us, so many lessons explained in painstaking clarity. There was a time that everytime one lesson was done I would secretly think ok awesome this must mean the road ahead is clear now and it will be smooth sailing now.....then well you know the rest. I won't deny that those moments make it hard, even for me the eternal optimist, I get tired too....I have been asked many times how I do it, keep going, lift myself up time and time again, and I have said many times faith.....for me watching that movie this weekend partly through fresh eyes of one I love well I realized part of it is the sisterhood. I grew up as an only child, it was lonely, it was sad and there were many moments of wishing for a sister of some sort, someone to talk to, share my dreams and hopes with, but there wasn't. Aunts were great, but you could only tell them so much, cousins are wonderful but for me all were younger than me, other than male ones and well those I wasn't looking to share my dreams with much less too many words.....adolescent Portuguese males in the 80's in downtown Toronto were not necessarily all that liberating when it came to how they felt about women, of course not all of them but majority of them. What I longed for my entire life was sisterhood, community, a sense of belonging.....a place where I never doubted my role or my value to the greater whole, hell I created my own family that is blended and the lines are so blurred now that we revel in the fact that love reigns and bloodlines are irrelevant, and those that don't well I guess bloodlines are really irrelevant to them so how can I fault them for that decision? after all we all learn on our own what is truly important to them, I can't and I won't so on we go......

Facebook many times takes a ton of hits, many complain about its drama quotient, well yea its pretty bad at times I know! but in truth the internet and Facebook combined have given me the ability to find my extended family, my sisters and brothers too. In a society where so many of us feel alone at times, especially us solitary practitioners it has become a place to connect with those that are of like mind and at times we are lucky and find a part of us that was missing. For me that is what it has become. I cannot tell you how many times in the last almost 8 years on there ~ and yes I said 8 years!~ that I have held hands virtually with a sister and sent love to support her and her family....or that a brother has stopped to just chat with me when they may not have known that at that moment I needed a friend too, someone to just say hello how are you...amazing something like Facebook, a tool so many of us take for granted, has so very many times connected me with those all over the world that feel my heart when it breaks, just as I feel their spirits when they soar. Something changes in the heart of a solitary witch when she finds that community, or at least it does for this witch. It is as if the knowledge of the ancients opens before me, supported it seems so much easier to see that which was hidden in the shadows around me, and the shadow no longer holds the same fear of darkness, more of an understanding and clarity of purpose. In all things and people there is good and bad, it is our choice how we use it. I chose growth, so now I don't do the little happy dance thinking ok yea smooth sailing anymore, no, now I sit back and absorb, pondering the words and sniff at it, swirl it around in my chalice as you would fine cognac, I let the smoke from my altar billow and rise as the connections in the lesson form, as the magic shows me what I am to gather from this moment, what I am to let go of and what I am to carry forward....

Today as I lit my altar, as I have come to do everyday, I sat back and just enjoyed the constancy and flicker of the candles both different but yet the same, as the little one did his little morning ritual of sweeping the kitchen I enjoyed watching him and realizing this was his moment of connection with his one little magical tool, his own broom, it reinforced in me that I never want to not enjoy the simplest of moments with eyes closed and a heart that does not see ever again.....community, belonging, sisterhood, family best lessons ever and in my opinion you can never fully grasp its enormity in your life because love is ever changing, support is always shifting and there is always something to learn about those you love, when we stop doing that we start taking each other for granted, and that is never a good lesson.

As the US Thanksgiving approaches for the first time in our home we are going to celebrate it, we are going to sit and let each other know around our table what we are thankful for in our lives, and how very thankful we are for each other, for the food we eat, the roof over our heads and for all of you that share in our lives and in our hearts. I am extra thankful that hard times bring us closer now rather than tear us apart, for that alone I am ever grateful, this was really a wonderful New Moon for us, plans are made and bonds reaffirmed. 

Blessings all! I send out blessings and love to you all!

16 November 2014

Happy Anniversary Witch's Chamber!!

Today is the anniversary of the day I took back me, and I have spent this last year looking back on my life, going over bit by bit, moment by moment, analyzing my actions, who I was, who I became and how I did it.  I realized in all that time that I am pretty thankful that I walked onto this path.  I was headed down this road that well for me would have surely meant a death to my soul.  When I was first married at 16 I couldn't cook, I was timid and quiet most times and well there was no way I could ever plant anything it would surely die! I look back now and realize that although at that point I dabbled and played with what at the time I considered the occult, I had no idea what path I was headed down and how much it would change me, witchcraft in the shadows saved my life. I kept that part of me hidden and kept doing what everyone thought was the right thing for a girl like me, a good little Portuguese girl, well even by the cultures standards I was already not one of those, although I had not done any of the things that classified you as a bad girl for whatever reason that reputation had already attached itself to me in my early years.  Some said it was my dad, since he had been the dark horse all those years I had graciously inherited the title so I worked harder to please, to make them stop talking.....well that created the worst pattern in my life, the people pleasing one, that somehow ate up all of who I was meant to be.

Life has sucked at times, not to put down the word suck because there are times that sucking can be so good! but this time instead of sucking honeysuckle flowers it has sucked sour grapes, and that I am not into. There was a time that I would look at all that bad stuff and think well as long as I never set my heart up for breaking by expecting the best then I will never be hurt or disappointed when the best doesn't happen.....should work right? nope! that was the worst thing I did! My heart is just not built that way, as I have come to realize there is a little bit of me that always looks at the best first, even when it is a bad situation I find the good in it, so that means for all those years I lived conflicted in those thoughts, how did I figure it out for myself? simple! I put everyone else's needs first, not just my kids, or my family but everyone! I became not important, non existent and the last person I thought of in any matter.....I made myself a second class citizen. Not such an original tale is it? us women we do this to ourselves a ton! we put our parents first as we grow, our partners first when we are older, then come kids and they come first, our jobs, our friends and on and on, we prioritise ourselves right out of the whole entire picture and then one day we wake up and suddenly we see that we are lost......that was me when my father passed.....suddenly that rock solid plateau I could always rest on when I tried to clear some of my patterns and reached for growth was gone....I relied on that rock for so long I lost my balance and freefell, open for all kinds of manipulation from all sorts of people, all I wanted to do was quietly lick my wounds, hibernate, disappear.....anything but center stage where I was suddenly put.

Then the vultures came out, once again let me be clear I love vultures in the wild but when people take on the attributes of vultures well they are not so damn attractive are they? They attacked every part of me, there was nothing off limits.  My health was used to be something that somehow was my fault, my weakness and the way that I let my family down, the fact that I collapsed from overwork and went into a full SLE episode, had to have surgery to remove lumps from my breast, could barely walk or function outside of my home, I was now scum and not worth the time to talk to. It was a time of pointing out where in my life I had failed to live up to expectations, my protector gone I became free game, and I hung my head in shame, lost in a world of grief and pain. My saving grace was that thankfully I had already started my online world, my shop, my page and my gallery, it was my place to hide away from a world filled with pain, for which I took further heat....the whole thing about hiding behind a computer screen, well yea that is not me....I am who I am either online or live. Of course I met many that I love dearly and love me but hell there is a shitload of well what I have come to call plastics or plastic witches out there ~ there is that shit stirring of the cauldron again!~ So what did I do? well at first I buckled and let them ride over me, but then as the pressure in my personal life continued and my outlet was being ruled by pompous asses, I rose up and took back my presence, my life and who I am even online.....man what a bitch that made me to soooooo many people! both online and live!

I don't say much in my status' about it anymore but in truth they attack my page, me, and my shop all the time. They spread gossip and lies about things they don't know, tell people my products are not made by me, post about my cheap wire, oh let's not forget how they measure me on their witch scales to decide how truthfully witchy I am or not....hell I have even heard about how they decide and measure what they consider to be my failures in my life to decide how strong MY magic is. REALLY? yes really.......there is nothing that is ever hidden in the online world for long, people talk. These are the reasons I am so choosy about who I associate with, I do not share anyone on Witch's Chamber that I do not believe in, that I do not like their product or their energy, and trust me when I tell you I take flack for that. There are those that do not like this, those that have tried to control what I do on my own page, through threats of hurting the page, spreading more vileness or even have openly started stupid ass witch wars that I refuse to participate in. I REFUSE to be coerced into supporting anyone I do not believe in simply for MORE exposure! you either like me and my art or not! I will not pretend to be more than I am and will most certainly NOT pretend to be LESS! Most people who walk in our community know that these things happen, they realize that someone is always trying to gain the upper hand by underhanded methods, magic is a wonderful thing but it is an energy that will work in the way the practitioner asks of it, and trust me not all you meet work with it in a positive manner that benefits all those they touch, for that matter I am also a witch that will work freely both in the light and for lack of a better word dark, in balance, always in balance. 

My life is hard enough with all the challenges I face daily I have no time, patience or desire to deal with all the bullshit that comes associated with these plastics.  Today marks a year for me of standing up and reclaiming my independence and my strength, it marks a year of telling myself that I am better than that and I deserve better.  I have worked hard all year and run into more of the plastics from which I ran away from very quickly! they are still out there but my antennae are finally back fully in line and working so I listen to my messengers much better now.  I live authentically within my magic and mundane life and combine the two without division.  My magic is who I am, it lives and breathes with me and provides my faith for the life I am building, the dreams I have for my little business is that it will become easier to care for my family with my sales, my book that I am still working on, taking my art much further with wire and gems, my point being I have dreams and I finally ~even without that plateau my dad provided~ I am finally able to put in the time and dedication that I needed to all these years to being me, living authentically and magically.......I am able to do that because I finally realize that it was probably the most important thing I could have done for myself my entire life. 

I am able to do this not because I have had some amazing windfall, the money came through or I suddenly have no other obligations that I CAN put first, no all of those things remain the same, money is non existent! especially this week after home repairs!, I still have 6 kids to think of and one full time to care for, I still have a husband that requires time and caring especially now that he is semi retired, all those obligations and responsibilities that I love are still present BUT now I realize that unless I do that for myself I can never truly be happy within......

I guess I can say I found the happy spot inside of me, and it was ME all along! Imagine that! 
Onwards and Upwards! 

Blessings all!