Saturday, December 31, 2011

In the Still of the Moment....

Merry Meet and Blessed New Year Family and Friends!

So here we stand, poised at the precipice of a New Year….2012. The Mayans believe this will mark the end of time as we know it.

And I don’t doubt this to be true, although not so much in its literal sense. I think there are profound changes taking place on an astral level that one can sense if they can allow themselves the time to be still and quiet their minds. There is a quickening in the vibration of the Universe. Many are feeling a pull toward a more spiritual existence. I, personally, feel a need to return to a much simpler, less stressful life, even if that means sacrificing the material pleasures that I’ve come to enjoy. After all is said and done, these hold no true value in the big flat screen, high definition, 3-D picture of things, but are merely illusions of happiness that satisfy a momentary desire. Surely they don’t represent a path to spiritual contentment.

The last three months of this year, while more prosperous, have been more stressful than I’d anticipated as well. I find myself experiencing life in glimpses, rather embracing those moments that should be savored. Still, I’ve been trying to appreciate these moments as they come, in smaller ways. Driving to work just as dawn is breaking and watch the sunrise in breathtaking colors that leave me whispering….”Oh God”, snuggling with my dog when I should be rushing to begin my day and dancing as often as I can muster the energy.

These are the kind of things that I never want to experience in a glimpse, but in a state of soul shaking, wide-eyed wonderment that fills my heart with more joy than anything money can buy. The promise that I make to myself in this New Year, should ya know, the Mayan prophesies actually fail to come to pass, is to embrace those moments every day that touch my soul.

For you, I wish more of those moments than you ever dreamed possible.

In Darkness, Light!


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Finding Myself

Merry Meet Family and Friends!

Ok, so where have I been?

Well, all I can say is that the Gods definitely have a sense of humor.

In the past 6 months, I have changed jobs 3 times.  How is that possible in this economy, you ask?  Magick!

I've recently taken a full-time job after having worked part-time for the past 8 years.  The best I can say is that the money is good and I'm gleaning some useful new skills.  The worst I can say is that I feel disconnected from those things that, up until now, I had enjoyed more than I ever realized.  

You see, I hadn't really been unhappy with my previous employment.  I actually enjoyed what I was doing, the hours worked well for myself and my family, and it paid well by today's standards.  So, why did I want to leave so badly?  Well, it was a family run business and the family in question operated at a level of dysfunctionality that created a constant exodus of well qualifed and hard working employees.  I had been looking for a job for the last two years and if you've been unemployed in this economy, you know that the job market has a word, pitiful.  I began doing magick to move things along... 

And move I did!  Not once, not twice, but three times!  However, none of them suited me and after the third time, which by the way, isn't always the "charm", I realized why.  I broke one of the cardinal rules of magick..."be specific!" and of common sense, "if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is".

You see, magick works very, very well.  At times, a little too well. If it weren't so, none of us would subject ourselves to the sideward glances and snickering encountered when one learns that we practice the fine art of Witchery.

Here are a few examples of just how well......

I have always loved Victorian homes.  I remembered wondering if I'd ever have the opportunity to own one.  Well, over this past Summer, we had a beloved friend who is a master carpenter, build us a storage shed in our backyard.  It's absolutely fabulous!  As I toiled in the Midsummer's heat, staining our new shed, our friend turned to me and said, "Wow, it looks just like a Victorian house!  And he was right! I'd gotten exactly what I asked for! I had just failed to mentioned that I wanted a Victorian home that I could, oh I don't know...actually live in!   I looked towards the heavens murmuring, "Seriously?!  You guys are just too funny!"

I also remembered thinking how much I'd love to own waterfront property.

And we were hit with Hurricane Irene....

Needless to say, it was less amusing the second time around!

So, you would think I would have learned something from all this?  Well, I believe I have...but as I mentioned the Gods definitely have a sense of humor, not to mention having job skills that include being detail oriented to degree that far exceeds anything the human mind might comprehend.  They are Gods, after all!

So recently, when I began, once again, working to find suitable employment, I felt confident that I was specific enough that I left nothing open to interpretation. 

I simply wanted a great job, that paid well, with great benefits, close to my home.

Well, I was thrilled when I was presented with a job offer from a company that has a reputation for excellence, offers great benefits, that almost always hires from within and with all the specifications I'd asked for!!!

However, as I reveled in my good fortune, I overlooked a few details that should have sent up red flags.  I was told at my interview that there had been "some problems".  My interpretation of this was that those problems had since been resolved and that I was walking into a better situation.  I had also been told that my boss could be "difficult".  Given that I've spent most of my life working in the field of medicine, I've learned that anyone who's job includes holding another's health and well-being in their hands, often possesses a Type A personality.   However, "difficult" should have a included, "intolerant of human error".   That being said, medicine is definitely a field where human error can have vast implications, so I didn't perceive this to be a deal breaker.   I also didn't realize that my coworker was crazier than a bag of rats, worked 10+ hour days and that when she need time off, I needed to do the same.  All this being said, it still wasn't the worst decision I've ever made. 

The worst decision I made was taking for granted those things that for me...are priceless.  Having the time to watch the birds in my birdfeeder, sit down to leisurely read a book or write, garden, spend time with my furry companions and sleep past 5 a.m.

Perhaps I'm being unreasonable.  I should be happy that I am gainfully employed in this economy...and I am.  I would just be happier if I had added two little words to my request....


In Darkness, Light!


Monday, August 29, 2011

Farewell, Irene!

Merry Meet Family and Friends!

Unless you live on another planet or in another country, you know that the United States east coast was hit by Hurricane Irene. It was a Category II hurricane that made land fall in North Carolina before making its way up the coast. By the time it hit us here in New Jersey, it was a Category I.

What one must realize is that we are not accustomed to our storms being large enough to be categorized. We get thunderstorms or an occasional tropical storm, which I personally find exhilarating, but nothing like this. The last hurricane I can remember was Hurricane Floyd in 1999, which seemed to pale by comparison.

I must confess, I was a little nervous, but felt certain we were well prepared. I had enough candles to light up the entire Village of Ridgewood on a good day, bottled water, flashlights, batteries, pet food, charged cell phones, ice filled coolers. I sat down with a nice glass of wine and waited for Lady Irene to make her entrance.

It began as gentle rain just before I went to bed and I considered the possibility that the media had probably hyped up the storm like they do every other “weather event”. I woke at about 1:30 a.m. to sound of driving rain and winds that were so strong I felt certain that our windows would implode.  And then we lost power. Now, I was no longer a little nervous…I was scared shitless! We all stayed awake until dawn.

As the sky began to lighten, making the situation feel a lot less ominous, my main concern was whether I’d be able to find the manual can opener so that we could feed the dogs and my French press, so that I wouldn’t die and/or become homicidal without my morning coffee. I manage to do both and neither with little effort.

I looked out the window, happy to see that there didn’t appear to be any more damage than one would find with your typical “bad” Jersey storm. There were a few tree branches in the yard, but nothing significant. The patio furniture and the potted plants on our deck were all relatively undisturbed. My rose bushes, that had been ferociously whipped around by the wind the night before, were perfectly secured to their trellises, and had beautiful buds just beginning to bloom. “Pfffttt, Hurricane Irene”, I thought to myself. I knew it was all “hype”.   Still, it was very windy and raining pretty hard, but I wasn’t worried. The worst seemed to be over and the meteorologists were reporting that by mid afternoon, the skies would clear and it would be a beautiful day!

I was peacefully sipping my coffee and thinking to myself that all we needed now was the power to go back on and Hurricane Irene would be a distant memory, when I glanced out our patio doors to see the backyard rapidly filling up with murky brown water! I screamed on the top of my lungs for my sleeping husband, as if he would be able to do something to stop it and watched as muddy water rose around our newly built shed and began swallowing most of our lawn! I was struck with an overwhelming sense of panic, but not for fear that our house would become flood ravaged.

You see, we have a fairly large, well established Koi pond in our yard. I’ve been caring for these fish for the past six or more years. These aren’t your common goldfish, but imported Japanese Koi, some of whom hatched in the pond and have grown to about a foot in length. And while I can’t say I feel the same way about them that I do my other pets, they are living beings and have brought both great joy and aggravation to my life….just like my kids!

That being said, over the years, I have had a recurrent nightmare of watching flood waters overtaking  the yard, flowing over the top of the Koi pond and seeing all the fish swim out into the muddy water, gasping for breath before dying on the grass. Oh.My.God! It’s awful!!!

I was in tears as I watched the water nearing my pond and realized that my nightmares were about to become a reality!

My mind was racing….there had to be something I could do, but what? I didn’t have anything large enough to hold all 22 fish and even if I did, how would I catch them all?!

Seeing how distraught I was, the kids did their best to comfort me, “get over it, Mom! They’re friggin’ fish!”

Still, I haven’t been practicing Witchcraft this long to back down from a challenge! And I certainly wasn’t going to stand by and just allow this to happen! There’s only “nothing” you can do, if you choose to do nothing!”

I ran out into the deluge and screamed on the top of my lungs, “Cut me a fucking break!!!”, which did absolutely nothing.

I ran back into the house and advised my husband that we needed to begin sandbagging the pond with the extra bags of mulch we had bought. He patiently explained that a few bags of mulch were not going to hold back that much water and that I needed to just “calm down”. Oh yeah, like that was really going to happen! I felt ill! And yes, I know they’re only fish…but they’re my fucking fish!!!

Then things got really weird…

I had recently downloaded a Ghost Hunting app on my IPod that comes with an EVP player. An EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomenon) device monitors voice transmissions from the other side. I had been listening to mine just before the flood hit and had forgotten to turn it off.  As I finally began to resign myself to the fact that my backyard was going to end up being the World’s largest Koi pond, I heard my EVP player say the word, “offering” and suddenly, I knew exactly what I needed to do!

I grabbed a bottle of Jamison Whiskey out of the liquor cabinet and ran down the steps to the backyard. The water was about 4 feet deep in most of the yard and had reached the bottom step of our deck, a mere foot or so from the pond. I poured three shots of Jamison into the muddy water.

I ran back in from the pouring rain, completely drenched and passed by my husband while holding a bottle of whiskey. My husband asked, “what the hell are you doing?” Without answering, I ran to the medicine cabinet and grabbed one of the lancets that my father in law had used to test his blood sugar and ran back outside. I’m certain my husband thought that surely I’d gone mad, but if he hasn’t figured that out after 25 years, whose fault is it?

I pierced my finger and watched as three tiny drops of my blood mingled with the rushing murky water.

Then, I held my breath and waited.

We did sustain some significant damage, although have been truly blessed in comparison to what others have lost. The flood waters stopped three inches from the pond and have since receded. The fishies are just fine!

In Darkness, Light!



My fishes are in there!!!!

Friday, August 19, 2011


Merry Meet Family and Friends!

So, a few days ago I went in for my annual mental health check. Yes, in addition to one's typical yearly visits to the gynecologist, the internist, the dentist and the, ophthalmologist I in fact, go for an annual chat with my psychiatrist. Just to, ya know, make certain that my level of insanity has been unchanged since the previous year.

Now, most people would be reluctant to admit they see a psychiatrist, but I view this as an investment in my mental health. Now I can imagine what some might be thinking, "mmmmmhmmm, she thinks she's a Witch, she sees a psychiatrist, yeah, she's crazier than a bag of rats!”

“You may be right, I may be crazy, but I just may be the lunatic you’re looking for.” ~ Billy Joel.

There had been some decidedly stressful life events that made seeking out a professional’s help absolutely crucial. As some of you know, I experienced the loss of my entire immediate family, my sister, mother and father, all within 15 months, followed by the adoption of my sister's child after she'd passed away. I had been in the process of working a full-time job and raising my own 5 year old daughter, when my sister's son, my nephew, who was a mere three months younger than my own child, came into our lives. This resulted in the parenting of functional twins while attempting to deal with seemingly insurmountable levels of grief. I began having panic attacks. Who wouldn’t?

If you don't think this sort of thing is enough to prompt a visit to a therapist, give it a try. However, I must warn you, it may stretch your perception of sanity to the brink of its endurance. Gratefully, I haven’t had a panic attack in quite some time, but my therapist likes to check on me every now and again to make sure I’m still a Witch. I think he’d be quite disappointed if he were to learn that I turned in my broom!

All this being said, indulge me a moment while I share a brief description of my psychiatrist...tall, dark and handsome with full pouty lips and a Russian accent. He’s a case for what Sigmund Freud described as “transference” waiting to happen, but I digress.

When I arrived at my appointment, he came out to retrieve me from the waiting room, promptly greeting me with, "how's our favorite Witch" and then, "I think about you at every Solstice!” mmmmmhmmmm…

You see, as with many people who were convinced that they knew me well enough not to expect any Earth-shattering revelations, I sort of blind-sided him during one of our sessions by revealing I was Wiccan. Since then, he’s been completely fascinated!

After a brief assessment to insure that my sanity was status quo, he began asking me about Wicca. He pondered whether a Wiccan and a Witch are one in the same and if not, what the differences were. When asked if I considered myself a Wiccan or a Witch, I replied both, which swiftly prompted him to begin scribbling in my chart. I shared that I’d been interviewed by the Philadelphia News about the whole Christine O’Donnell, “I’m not a Witch” fiasco which led to a discussion of the reasons why Wiccans/Witches were so annoyed by Ms, O’Donnell’s comments. I explained our ongoing struggle to try to differentiate ourselves and our practices from that of Satanism. He impressed me by pointing out that Satan was a Christian construct and very different from that of Wicca. Wicca, from what he knew of it, was a very peaceful, harmonious practice that focused on reverence for the Earth, celebrated the Solstices and followed the cycles of the Seasons and the Moon. I kind of knew already this, but I listened politely as he professionally explained the finer points of Wicca. I was still mentally imagining him at a Beltane festival.

Then he asked, “How do you spell this…Wicca?” as he typed it into his Blackberry. I was both bemused and enchanted as he began reading from Gavin and Yvonne Frost’s “Church and School of Wicca” website. “So why do you think it is that this Wicca is so often confused with Satanism?” he asked. I explained that it had a lot to do with media sensationalism. I then mentioned that, having personally known a few Satanists in my time, not even they actually worshipped Satan. Again with the scribbling?

He then asked a couple of questions that I wasn’t entirely comfortable answering. “Where and how often do you meet as a group and how many people are in your Coven?” Without trying to appear too elusive, I offered simply that we celebrated each Full Moon and that a Coven, in the traditional sense, consisted of thirteen members. He asked if there was some secret way to know another Witch when we met. I told him yes there was, but fell short of adding “but if I told you I’d have to kill you” and instead opted for the more sane, but slightly less truthful answer, “by their pentacle, of course!”

So, fifty-five minutes later I was pronounced sane for another year. On the way out, I mentioned that I was off to finish some masonry work that we were doing on our sunroom. He said, “Well, you are a woman of multiple talents!”

“As long as it’s not multiple personalities…it’s all good!” I replied. 

In Darkness, Light!


Saturday, August 6, 2011

Mysteries of the Mind...

Merry Meet Family and Friends!

So, yesterday I had a decidedly strange, frightening and yet, rewarding experience.

I had received an email a few weeks ago from a counselor at psychiatric facility in our area asking if I would be willing to provide Reiki to one of their patients. The patient, who is on medical disability, had limited resources and couldn't afford the customary fees for Reiki.

Now, I know that there's a line of reasoning about Reiki that suggests that there should be an energy exchange, usually in the form of monetary payment, for services rendered. However, I have always had a real problem charging for healing work and will always offer Reiki, free of charge, to those who are unable to afford the same. I know this may not be consistent with the practice of Reiki, but seriously folks, charging patients who are financially struggling for healing, especially given that I have absolutely no overhead, would be something that would keep me awake at night.

Speaking of things that keep me awake at night, this is where things begin to get a little...strange.

The night before I was to meet my patient, I felt an unease that I couldn't quite put my finger on. Yes, he is a permanent resident in a psychiatric facility and has a history of visual and auditory hallucinations, but that really wasn't a concern. I've interacted with psychiatric patients in the past, I was assured that he was nonviolent and that there would someone present during our session. I actually found the prospect of working with this client...fascinating. Yet, I found myself playing this encounter over in my mind, as I tossed and turned, unable to sleep.

Just as I began to dose off, a disturbing image popped into my mind...

Ok, it wasn't Pope Benedict that haunted my dreams, but seriously who can deny this is the face of evil.  What's even scarier, this guy is a major "Spiritual Leader?"  ::::shudder::::

No, the image was that of someone younger, with dark hair...but the eyes, the eyes were the same.  Almond-shaped, heavy lidded and demonic.

I was startled from my peaceful slumber by a totally unexpected "Holy Crap!" moment!  Pun obviously intended.  The image lingered with me for several minutes as I lay there trying to determine what, if anything, might have prompted it. Nothing obvious came to mind.  Still, I have been dealing with some stressful life decisions and so I chaulked it up to anxiety or just one of those weird things that happens as we're drifting off.  Yes, that must be it.  By the next morning, the incident was completely forgotten.

My patient, David, was a young man who has been schizophrenic since the age of 5.  He was very pleasant in a socially awkward kind of way. Upon our meeting, I asked him how he'd been feeling, what was troubling him and how I might be able to help. He explained that he was diagnosed with a schizophrenic disorder, that he was a very spiritual person who enjoyed meditation, yoga and who was interested in Witchcraft.  He went on to explain that he was experiencing hallucinations in which he saw the "ghost" of his father.  His father is still living, but they have had a very bad relationship. He reported hearing things and being unable to sleep because he felt that things were "poking" him.  I asked if he'd been actually practicing any Witchcraft and he told me he had been doing candle spells and some healing work on people.

Ok, so the man obviously has a significant psychiatric disorder, but that doesn't mean that he hasn't peaked the interest of some spiritual entities that may be taking advantage of his weakened mental state.  It is said that when you begin practicing Witchcraft, you gain the attention of those entities that are drawn to its energy.  I told David that "psychic attacks" while possible, are exceedingly rare.  I suggested he discuss these issues with his physicians to see if perhaps he was experiencing the unpleasant side effects of one of his medications. I further explained that he needed to learn to shield himself properly if he was going to continue to practice any type of Witchcraft.

Although, some practitioners prefer quiet, I enjoy having soft meditation music playing during my Reiki sessions. I find it prepares both myself and my patient for the experience.For me, it's kind of like the scent of incense when I first enter ritual space. Even before the Circle has been cast, I'm already there.

When I was ready to begin David's Reiki session, I asked him to lie down and make himself comfortable. I had my back to him as I fiddled with the volume on my IPod. When I turned toward him, I noticed that his eyes, which were piercing blue and almond shaped, were now completely rolled back in his head!  Suddenly, the image from my dream the night before came flooding back. My breath caught in my throat and I could feel another "Holy Crap" moment coming on! His eyes remained fixed in this position for the entire hour I was with him, even after he'd fallen asleep. I gotta tell ya, it was friggin' creepy!

When our session ended, he seemed much more calm and happier than when I'd arrived. This was more than enough of an "energy exchange" for me.  We chatted a little as I told him the areas that I'd focused on and shared that, in addition to the Reiki symbols I had used, that I'd also surrounded him with some banishing pentagrams, just in case he did have some uninvited guests hanging around.

Afterwards, David left the room and I spoke to his counselor about the possibility of bringing him some Cascaria.  Cascaria is a white chaulk made from powdered egg shells.  It is used in some practices such as Santeria and Voodoo to aid in protection. I was taught that it can be applied to the palms of the hands, the soles of the feet and the top of the head to ward off unwanted energies..

While I truly believe that David's problem is more psychological, than spiritual, I thought that perhaps this might act as a placebo, should he continue to be convinced that he was under some form of psychic attack.  His counselor agreed and thought this was a wonderful idea. 

David ran up to me as I was leaving and asked if I had a pentacle that he might buy from me.  I told him that I believed I did, but that it would be a gift.  He was very pleased!

When I arrived back home, I asked my husband to come out to the deck and to bring some white sage. Given my strange dream and even stranger encounter with David when we'd met, I felt that perhaps some extra precaution might be in order.  I truly felt that it would be best not to enter our home until I had thoroughly smudged myself.   Once inside, I proceeded to wash my hands with soap and consecrated water.  I believe it's always better to err on the side of caution and you know what they say......

In Darkness, Light!!!


Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Quirky Bunch...

We humans are a quirky bunch, aren’t we? Intelligent, yet savage. Yet, we fancy ourselves to be the most intelligent and most complex of all the species on this lovely place we call home. But are we really?

I watch a dance of nature unfolding outside my window. Rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, birds, all enjoying the same food source in peaceful cohabitation. They have learned, even without the benefit of our superior intellect, to coexist for the good of all.

So begs the question…what’s up with that?

Think for a moment about your closest relationship; your best friend, spouse, spiritual partner or significant other. I mean REALLY think about them. Can you honestly say you love every unique characteristic of that person? If you can say yes….good for you!!! Personally, I call bullshit! I would be willing to bet there is at least one aspect of that person’s character that you are not entirely thrilled with. I would even go as far as saying that there are friends in your inner circle that you may love, but also, may actually, from time to time, irritate you to an “un-friendly” degree. Alternatively, there are those that you find more consistently annoying, but still consider friends. I believe the correct term is “frenemies”. Despite this, we still feel blessed to have these people in our lives and we are as content to look past their “imperfections” as they are to look past our own. Given the complexity of our human nature, if we didn’t, our species may cease to exist.

But, I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, right? You are human, after all. Possessing all the intelligence bestowed on us by the Gods and/or creation?

I’m certain we’ve all been asked at one time or another, “Why do you still involve yourself with that person?” And if I'm to be honest, I’ve asked the same question of others. Obviously, not everyone is going to be as enamored with the same people we are and that includes those relationships that are the most significant to us.

Yet, when we truly care for someone, that question may come from a place of concern for their well-being. If the person seems to be caught in an unhealthy pattern of unhappiness based on their relationship, we may be frustrated because they are not seeing things from our perspective. And the fact of the matter is…they may not want to, they don’t have to and more importantly, it’s not our right to expect them to.

But, that’s what we do when we care, isn’t it? It’s one of our more appealing human attributes…empathy. However, there’s a fine line that exists between healthy concern and the desire to control and at times, that line might blur to the point of being indistinguishable.

The true nature of our concern lies in the intention. Why are we concerned and is there true reason for concern? Is the person in question in danger? Do they seem emotionally or physically unwell as a result of this relationship? If the answer is no, then one needs to examine their own motives and intentions, to determine what, if any, benefit will be reaped from the ending of that relationship. If there is any benefit at all, any given advice may be ill advised or divisive.

As humans, I believe we often find ourselves in the eternal quest for the “perfect” in our relationship/s, as well as in ourselves. Occasionally, we are convinced that we’ve found that perfection. Whether it’s a best friend or a soul mate, group dynamic, there’s one thing I can guarantee, even if it comes close, it isn’t. And if perfection in ourselves is unattainable, what right do we have to criticize the choices someone else makes about theirs?

I began to re-examine some of the more challenging relationships in my life; those that I once believed were over before they began. What I discovered about them and about myself was…enlightening. Those perceived “imperfections” were no more or less significant than my own and I began to see and appreciate the “something beautiful” in all of them.

Now consider the more challenging relationships in your life. Perhaps, you've ended them, finding their imperfections insurmountable. What beauty could you find if you looked past their flaws? If you find none exists….so be it. Personally, I call “bullshit”.

Now….shall I tell you what I find beautiful about you?

In Darkness, Light!


Saturday, April 30, 2011

Blame It On Grandma!

Blessed Beltane, my beloveds!

Today I am celebrating my carefully calculated, albeit not so delicately orchestrated....natal escape!  Yes, it's the day I came kicking and screaming, ass first, into the World!

My birth, however, was a lot like this past Easter. It almost didn't happen! 

You see, my parent's marriage began circling the drain long before it had even been consummated.  My mother, was the youngest of seven children, six girls and one boy, who came from a strict Italian upbringing.  My father, was a handsome, blond haired, blue eyed, bad boy, with a wild heart and temper to match!  Despite my Grandmother's dire prediction that no good could come of it, my Mother found him irresistible!  When they secretly eloped at 19 years old, story has it, that my little Italian Grandma took a broom to him! 

For the first 14 years of their marriage, my parents remained childless. The doctors discovered that my mother had a condition that made the possibility of her conceiving highly unlikely. Sad, but probably not the worst case scenario under the circumstances.

The doctors were even more shocked than my parents, when at 33 years old, my mother became pregnant.  Despite their less than a perfect union, they happily welcomed my sister, Leslie into the World.   Still, their joy was tempered with a warning that, due to my mother's age and her difficulties conceiving, they should be thankful to have one child.

If my parent's relationship improved after my sister's arrival, it was fleeting at best. And if my sister's birth came as surprise, can you imagine my Mother's reaction when, 14 years later, at the tender age of 41 years, she found herself, once again, pregnant!  Back in the day, this gave the term "advanced maternal age, a whole new meaning!

My Mother was in a state of complete and utter...denial!  She consulted two different doctors and took 4 pregnancy tests before she accepted the fact that she was going to have another child!   And I can't really say I blame her! Thankfully, abortion was still illegal at the time or I might not be here to tell the tale!   My father, on the other hand, was beyond ecstatic!  You see, he had mellowed with age and looked forward to the "blessed event". 

And so, on Beltane, more years ago that I am willing to admit...a Witch was born!

Talk about wielding a wicked broom!  Way to go, Grandma!

In Darkness, Light!


Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Easter That Almost Wasn't...

So, I guess I don't have to remind you that today is Easter Sunday.  I, on the other hand, actually did need to be reminded.

For the past 16 years, Easter, for me, has been a formality.  I've celebrated it, not because I rejoice in Christ's resurrection, but as a courtesy to those in my family who do.  Please don't misunderstand, I am happy for Christ having risen.  And I'm happy for all those that are happy that Christ has risen.   I simply don't follow in the same footsteps as those that rejoice.

When I was a child, Easter was indeed a major holiday.  Almost as grand as Christmas...or at least, to my child's mind, it felt that way.  My Mother would take me for a new Easter outfit every year.  I'd wait with the same breathless anticipation of the Easter Bunny as I'd had for Santa Claus. The evening before, we would sit at the kitchen table dying eggs and on Easter morning, I would wake to a basket overflowing with jelly beans, chocolate eggs and a huge chocolate rabbit. But, when it was time for the Easter Sunday Mass, it would be my Aunt Mary that would take me to church rather than my parents.  I really don't remember my parents attending any type of formal religious services unless someone married or died.   And while I may have sat patiently through the Mass as a child, it wasn't until I was much older that I actually understood the meaning behind the celebration.

Sure, I enjoy celebrating the Christian holidays. I've always loved the warm fuzzy feeling that the "Spirit of the Season" brings. Given that Christ is one of the Deities I honor, and that I have Christian family, I will still celebrate his birth, but that doesn't mean I feel the need to celebrate all the holidays in his honor. I honor him more often, along with my other Deities, with devotions and offerings on my altar.

In light of my father in law's recent passing, there didn't seem to be a reason for a formal Easter celebration this year.  Our Christian family members are scattered too far and wide for us to celebrate together. Our kid's are currently "undeclared" in terms of their religious beliefs, or at least for holidays where there are no actual gifts involved, and have long since outgrown the Easter Bunny. Although, they so bemoaned the tragedy that is their lives without their Easter baskets, that we broke down and bought them each a chocolate bunny.

I must confess that, while at least for me Easter seemed more of an afterthought this year, we will be celebrating it.  We will celebrate in honor of my father-in-law, Mike and all those who find hope and strength in their faith.  And while Christ might suggest that a celebration in his honor belongs to everyone, I believe, I've finally reconciled that I no longer consider Easter one of mine. 

On March 21st, we celebrated the Pagan holiday of Ostara or the Spring Equinox.  It is also a celebration of the return of the sun and is a time of rebirth.  And although the outfit I wore was not picked out for me by my Mom, it was the one she saw me come into the World wearing!

Easter Blessings!


Friday, April 22, 2011

Splendor in the Grass!

Merry Meet Family and Friends!

"The grass is alway greener on the other side".

My Mom used to say this often when we were growing up.  It's the adage often used during our moments of self-doubt. Whether we are questioning our accomplishments, the choices we've made or the relationships in our lives, what we are doing, in actuality, is holding them up for comparison to see how they well measure up to that of others. At times, this self doubt may be the catalyst for change that motivates us to strive for better. At others, it's the fire of envy that consumes us to the point that we recklessly pursue something that exists only in our imaginations. Unfortunately, we often don't recognize this until we're looking back on what we've left behind.

We've all experienced periods of uncertainty. We wouldn't be human if we didn't. I know I have, probably more times than I can count. But during those times, I've tried to practice the art of mindful stillness, rather than rushing head long into the fire of self-doubt.

The last several months have posed quite a challenge for me.  I recognize this as being part of my initiation process.  Challenging? Yes.  Unexpected?  Well, perhaps enlightening might be a better word.

That greener grass I've gazed longing upon? Well, for as much as it might have appeared to be so, upon closer inspection, it was actually astro turf!   Still, there really is no way to fully appreciate those things we have, without actually comparing them to what we perceive might be better. 

Better? Perhaps.  Or is it merely....astro turf?

We all wear different masks.  We change them in order to suit our situation. Some might consider this "shapeshifting".   At what point does the "shape" become a dramatic break in character and the "shift", a sacrifice of one's integrity in order to get ahead. Make no mistake, the truly wise will see through the blatantly disingenuous.

Weeping for some one's plight without empathy for their pain does not translate into compassion. Even the most mediocre actor can master tears. True greatness of spirit comes from sharing and acknowledging one's pain and offering comfort from your own heart. To offer any less is bound to ring hollow, even to ears that are desperately seeking solace.

Working "in the light" as a matter of convenience does not make one a "lightworker".  Healing is a gift when shared freely with those in need, not merely those that are deemed worthy.  A true "lightworker" has the ability to put aside their ego in order to elevate others to their higher potential.  They recognize the purpose and meaning in all things.  One cannot elevate the spirits of those that they are walking upon.

Personal prejudice has no place in sacred space.  If your group dynamics seems to be more of revolving door rather than a Circle, perhaps it's time to reconsider your place there. While there is always a certain amount of culling involved, if the exodus involves a specific type of person or gender, it may reflect an underlying hostility being carried over from the mundane. 

Trust and respect are cultivated through patience, love and with the passage of time.  They allow us to be strong when things are at their worst and yet, humble in our in our strength.  Trust, honor and respect are not granted based on who we are or what we believe we deserve, but what we've done to deserve them.

"Forgive and forget".  Ah yes, another of my Mother's "pearls of wisdom".  The two have never been meant to be used interchangably. To attempt to forget is to negate those memories that our psyches deem too painful to revisit and yet, there are is lessons held within those painful memories that may protect us from repeating our mistakes.  Forgiveness is the act of moving past one's pain to allow for healing, not denying what that pain has taught us.

And the moral of the story..

If it doesn't isn't grass!

In Darkness, Light!


Friday, April 15, 2011

Fine Tuning the Stereo...

Merry Meet Once Again Family and Friends!

Declaring one's self a Wiccan or Witch doesn't grant carte blanche in terms of acceptance in today's society. And there's a reason for that...

The Wicked Witch of the West! No, not really. The portrayal of the "Wicked Witch" goes as far back as the Bible, but she's a benchmark example of what many of us grew up believing a Witch was supposed to look like and how they were believed to behave. But it doesn't stop there...

Yes, Witches/Wiccans have a fairly substantial stereotype to overcome in order to gain the same acceptance offered freely to other religions.

Mrs. Patrick Stewart fought 10 years simply to have the right to display the pentacle, the symbol of our beliefs, on her husband, Sgt. Patrick Stewart's headstone. Sgt. Stewart was killed in Afganistan. Love your Freedom, Thank a Vet? Mrs. Stewart didn't want thanks. She simply wanted her husband to be honored in the same manner as those who fought and died along side him.

How many of you who practice Wicca or who consider yourselves Witches are actually "open" about your beliefs? Many of us are, but there are far more who aren't. We can't afford to be. And it's not merely a matter of societal pressures, but often, a battle for acceptance that is being fought within our own families as well.

Why? Why does a religion whose basic tenet is, "harm none, do as ye will", have to struggle so hard to gain acceptance? Fear...well, actually fear based on misperceptions. And let's face it, take a good look at some of these images. Why would anyone go out of their way to learn more about what being a modern day Witch actually means, when they have had these images ingrained in their psyches since childhood? Even the most open-minded among us, upon hearing the word, "Witch", conjure up these images, rather than this...

Yeah, that's me.

However, if you are a tourist, visiting Salem, Massachusetts, the perception of what a Witch is supposed to look like is exactly what you might expect to see. In Salem, the "Halloween Capital of the World" being a Witch is business. You may not see someone dressed as the stereotypical Witch, but I suspect you'd be disappointed if there weren't those playing the part. In Salem, a city rich in Witchcraft's history, being a Witch is perfectly acceptable. That is not to suggest that there are no actual Witches in Salem.

I absolutely love Salem and all those that work so hard to make it the lovely and magickal place it is!

However, many of us, dare I say, most of us, are not in the business of Witchcraft. Being a Wiccan/Witch is an expression of our spirituality. It's a religious and/or magickal path, not a career path. It's the way in which we connect with and honor our Gods, not pay our mortgages. We reside in average communities, living "mundane" lives, for as much as any Witch can consider their lives "mundane" in the traditional sense of the word. Unlike Salem, for most of us, being a Witch is not a means of promoting tourism or stimulating the economy.

Personally speaking, I don't know if I will ever gain acceptance living in a place where prejudices arise based what side of town you live on or how long you've been a resident. And, I certainly don't expect to see businesses sprouting up because Ridgewood has it's own "UnOfficial Witch"...and I wouldn't want them too.

Wife, Mother, Surgical Coordinator, Reiki Practitioner...Witch! Tourist Attraction...not so much!

In Darkness, Light!


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

One Witch's, "Violent Torpedo of Truth"

So, I woke up this morning to this video and I wanted to drown myself in my coffee.

Apparently, a group of Salem Witches gathered to perform a "magickal intervention" to prevent Charlie Sheen from using certain words that are "sacred" to the Craft, those being "Goddess", "Warlock" and "High Priest".

So my question is, when did the "Craft" acquire the exclusive rights to the words, "Goddess", "Warlock" or "High Priest?" Those words have been used for centuries and are quite common place. If you've read J.K. Rolling's "Harry Potter" or have seen the movies, you've obviously heard the word "Warlock", haven't you? Or perhaps you've seen Jennifer Lopez advertising Gillette's Venus Razor with their slogan, "Bring Out the Inner Goddess in You". If you're a Country music fan, than you already know that Conway Twitty is the "High Priest" of Country Music! I actually didn't know this, but apparently it's true! What can I say, the World's a twisted place!

And what's up with the resurgence of the word, "Warlock". I can't begin to count how many times over the years, I've been asked, "so is a Warlock a male Witch?" In some Christian and Scottish traditions the word "Warlock" was the term used for a male Witch. However, the English version of the word "Warlock" actually meant "oath breaker" or "deceiver". I can only imagine that the word was dropped when referring to Witches because of its negative connotations. A male Witch was simply..well, a Witch.

I know quite a few well respected occult practitioners that refer to themselves as Warlocks. Charlie Sheen is obviously not one of them. So, it begs the question, if you are a male, who is open about your occult practices, what is the purpose of using the word, "Warlock?" I mean, the male part is obvious, isn't it? As far as the Witch part is concerned, well...a rose by any other name...

All this being said, I want to explain a little about the video for those who might be unfamiliar. What the Witches in the video are doing is referred to as "casting a circle". A "circle" is a protective place of power. It is the sacred space wherein one establishes their connection to the Gods. It is often considered to be "Between the Worlds" and is "a place that is not a place and a time that is not a time". What they are attempting to do is a "binding" which simply means that they will prevent Charlie Sheen from using words that, at least to these particular Witches, are considered "sacred".


So, while we're on the subject of Charlie Sheen violating the "sacred", how bout' those video cameras in ritual space? Shouldn't a place where you are at one with the Gods, be held as sacred? At a time that is not a time, in a place that is not a place, there should be no place or time for watches, cellphones or video cameras. Or at least, this is the way I was taught. And while there may be no hard and fast rules, perhaps there should be.

So, Charlie Sheen presumably used the "sacred" words? Whose words? If you're a practicing Wiccan, perhaps there are words that you consider "sacred", but I'm fairly certain these are not them!

Charlie Sheen may enjoy making a public spectacle of himself. With all due respect to the Salem Witches however, we Wiccans/Witches have enough to do to be taken seriously without riding on the coattails of Charlie's Sheen's "Violent Torpedo of Truth".

Some have speculated that Charlie Sheen has lost his mind. Perhaps he is a little crazy. I suspect Charlie knows exactly what he's doing.

You know the old saying, "Any publicity is good publicity?" In some case, it doesn't always apply.

Consider the Salem Witch Trials. N'uff said.

In Darkness, Light!


Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Curse of Midas

Merry Meet and Blessings Family and Friends!

So, if you've seen the video in my last blog entry, you know that there was a conference held at Harvard entitled the "Social Transformation by the Power of God Conference". Apparently, there are some people that consider Witchcraft and the practitioners thereof, to be a..."contemporary menace to society".

The video, which has been posted on several internet sites, gets funnier every time I've seen it! I especially like the part where Dr. Pat Francis, wails, "we bleed the blood of Jesus over every altar of false religion".

False religion? By who's estimation? Have these people actually done any research into our religion? Or do they simply enjoy working themselves up into a tizzy of hatred and intolerance in the name of Jesus Christ? I wonder what Jesus would say? Perhaps, I'll have to ask him myself, given that, along with the other Deities on my "altar of false religion", I also have a crucifix.

Many of the Witches who viewed this video rallied a response to block the intent of this conference. That's not necessarily a bad idea. One of the worst things one can do is to assume that the negativity that's being generated here won't be effective because you don't believe it will. Quite frankly, I've seen some pretty nasty things happen to those who arrogantly decide that they, "don't believe in that stuff". Obviously, if Harvard hosted an entire conference devoted to ridding the World of us, we must have provided some fairly convincing evidence as to the power of Witchcraft. I mean, I would hate to think that an institution as prestigious as Harvard would be hosting a bunch of right wing fanatics who've taken up the cross against a religion whose basic tenet is, "An it harm none, do as ye will".

Personally, I felt no pressing need to protect myself from Dr. Francis and her merry band of witch hunters. I certainly didn't feel the need to protect myself from the "Power of Christ". No, I was more concerned by the hatred being bred by these self-appointed "Apostles", who are intent on ridding society of it's "menaces".

And how about those "generational curses" that Dr. Francis and her colleagues are convinced are the result of the practice of Witchcraft. Perhaps they should "bleed the blood of Jesus" over the altars of those who inflict the generational curses that follow sexually abused children into adulthood...anxiety/depression, Post-traumatic stress disorders, suicide attempts, substance abuse, self-mutilation...just to name a few. Children born to sexually abused parents are at increased risk of being physically, emotionally and/or sexually abused.

"Inter-generational transmission of physical abuse is thought to develop as a result of patterning parental behavior experienced as a child; that is, a child who experiences physical abuse as a child is at risk to repeat this behavior as an adult (Zuravin, McMillin, DePanfilis, & Risley-Curtiss, 1996)."

Perhaps those of us who practice the fine art of Witchery should hold a conference to illuminate the real menaces to society, those who hide behind Christ while violating the innocent.

Hey, Dr. Francis...obviously not everything that Christians "touch" turns to gold.

Oh, by the way...we're still here.

In Darkness, Light


Proud to be a pentacle wearin, Witchcraft practicin' Menace to Society!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

It's Funny Until...

Merry Meet Family and Friends!

So, this morning I signed on to AOL and the first thing that was displayed on my "Welcome" screen was an article about a woman who was fired from her job as a TSA (Transportation Security Administration) agent because she was Wiccan. Apparently, the woman was well respected and had a flawless employment record, until her co-workers learned she was a Witch. Afterwards, she was subject to harassment and claims that she had cast "hexes" upon her co-workers. The article read as follows:

"She was in the top 10 percent in Albany at catching weapons on the X-ray machine. She passed her skills test on the first try. She caught a woman on her way to Vietnam with $30,000 in cash. And she didn't mind working with the passengers -- her training as a massage therapist kept her from being squeamish, as some officers were, about patting down elderly and special-needs passengers.


Obviously, a glowing Personnel record was not enough to prevent her from being fired or from being harassed in the workplace because of her religion.

If you're a practicing Wiccan and open about your beliefs, at some point you're going to encounter the typical decades old jokes, "Where did you park your broom?", "Where's your pointy hat?", "How come you're not green?" or "Are you a good Witch or a bad Witch?"

Comments such as these have probably been circulating since Gerald Gardner introduced Wicca to the general population and are merely some of the petty nuisances that come with the territory. Most of us simply brush them off as a byproduct of ignorance, not necessarily in the derogatory sense, but in that there are still those who are woefully misinformed about the religion of Wicca. However, if this is the extent of the negativity you experience, consider yourself...blessed.

I can't say that I've ever been subjected to the degree of harassment experienced by my Wiccan counterpart. Aside from some friendly teasing by acquaintances, most people have been very respectful.

Occasionally however, I will participate in our community's blog. Many a time the discussion will be purposely steered away of the topic at hand and directed toward my being Wiccan. Recently, the following comment was posted:

"Maybe we should pour a bucket of water on Tracy to see if she melts".

On the surface, this appears to be nothing more than another tired attempt at humor and that's the manner in which it was perceived. However, upon further consideration, I realized that it had much darker implications in that it encourages others, that may be unstable and living within my own community, toward acts of physical aggression. I'm certain that was not the manner in which it was intended, but then again the poster obviously hadn't bothered to think that far before typing.

That said, can you ever imagine walking up to a Christian co-worker and saying, "Hey, how's that second coming going for ya? Hope you haven't been holding your breath!" or "Let's drop a penny on the floor to see how many Jews go for it". It's bigoted and disrespectful and anyone with even a minute amount of common sense wouldn't dream of behaving this way.

Yet, as Wiccans, this is the kind we encounter routinely. We've been more than a little patient...if not a little bored.

So what about this woman's situation made it different than anyone else who has been dismissed from their job or discriminated against in the workplace. Surely not every one's case makes headlines. If she had been practicing a mainstream religion, it would have probably been handled internally, without the need for media involvement. The only thing that made her situation newsworthy is that she's Wiccan and the circumstances of her firing involved allegations of Witchcraft. Oh..those crazy Wiccans!

So, I wonder, how does such a controversial group manage to remain under the radar? Common sense would suggest that if all the rumors you've heard about us and our practices were true, it would be almost impossible for us to avoid attention, and yet, most us do so every day with very little effort on our parts.

I know! Perhaps it's that Witchcraft thing! Maybe the reason why we aren't constantly the focus of media attention is because we've cast a "hex" or two to remain out of the limelight. If you believe that, you might find the truth even more shocking.

Most of us follow a version of the same basic tenets taught by most of the mainstream religions and live our lives accordingly. We are successful at our jobs, at raising our children and are active and productive members of our communities. Despite this, at times our livelihoods are placed in jeopardy, our parenting skills may be called into question, along with our sanity. Our ability to live our lives and express ourselves openly, with the same respect thats given to those of different faiths is compromised, simply because we choose to follow an alternative religious path.

Today, as I listened to the radio, I heard a beautiful advertisement by that declared, "It's time to pray! Find a prayer meeting in your area!". On Friday evenings I often hear, "Sundown begins at 5:45 p.m. Good Shabas and Shabbat Shalom!".

Seriously, can you ever imagine ever hearing, "Blessings of the Full Moon! Come join us for our public Esbat! Don't forget your robe!?"

I wonder if I can get air time?

In Darkness, Light!


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Change. Spelled, "M-a-g-i-c-k"

Merry Meet and Blessed Equinox Family and Friends!

So, the following question was posed on Facebook, "Do you use the words, "magick" or "magic" and why?" It's a fine question!

Aleister Crowley added the "k" to the traditional spelling of the word "magic" to differentiate it from stage magic, i.e. pulling rabbits out of asses, (ooops, outside voice) I meant, hats...card tricks, sawing women in get the point.

Aleister defined "Magick" as it pertains to the occult arts as, "the Science and Art of causing change to occur in conformity with Will" and so do I.

I have to say that some of the answers to the Facebook query were not at all what I'd expected.

Many of posters said that they used the traditional spelling of the word, when referring to the practice of Witchcraft, in order to avoid, "drawing attention to myself". Really? Wait...What?! To say the least, I was a tad confused.

I believe part of the problem I have in wrapping my mind around this line of reasoning comes from my own conditioning. I kind of eased my way out of the "broom closet" almost as an afterthought. Most people had known me for years before learning that I did things...well, a little differently. I have been very fortunate in that I have had the support of family, friends, co-workers and employers who are open-minded and non judgemental.

That being said, I'm still not getting the whole, "to avoid drawing attention to myself" rational.

Seriously, how often do we use the word, "magic" in our mundane lives when we're referring its traditional meaning? I would think that if someone mentions the word, spelling notwithstanding, it's going to draw a little attention. It's just that kind of word.

"I'm going to do a little magic/Magick".

There are only a couple of possibilities, really. You are either a professional entertainer or a Witch. If you're a professional entertainer,'d more than likely welcome the attention. As a Witch...well, as a Rule of Thumb, it's not always a good idea to use the word where it might know, those funny looks we get when it's realized that we're not exactly referring to pulling rabbits out of aaa...hats.

Despite how far many of us have come in terms of acceptance of our beliefs, the majority of us are still, "in the broom closet". How we spell the word that defines our practice isn't going to change how the person behind the door is perceived.

"the Science and Art of causing change to occur in conformity with Will" ~ Aleister Crowley

Shouldn't we really be asking...

"Will change occur with conformity?"

In Darkness, Light!


Saturday, January 15, 2011

Witch...are you?

Merry Meet Family and Friends!

There are few things I find quite as distasteful, not to mention embarrassing to the Wiccan/Pagan community, than the use of the word, "Witch" for the sole purpose of its shock value. I'm not referring to the overzealous, adolescent Harry Potter or Charmed fan or even the neophyte, who is filled with passion for their new found path. No, I'm referring to those self-proclaimed "serious" practitioners who toss around the title for no other reason than the anticipated reaction.

More amusing, but no less adolescent, is that these same individuals will often allude to their magickal prowess, offering veiled suggestions as to what they may be capable of, should by word or deed, you happen to bruise their delicate egos.

If this at all sounds too familiar (no pun intended) may I suggest finding a more suitable place to put your broom until you have a better understanding of and more respect for, the Craft....and just to be clear, I'm not referring to the movie.

I'm a Wiccan, specifically British Tradition Gardnerian, who practices Witchcraft...with a little rootwork thrown in for good measure. I consider myself a Witch. However, this is NOT what one learns about me upon first we meet. When discussing my beliefs with anyone whom is not Pagan, but whom I perceive to be open-minded, I prefer to use the term, "Wiccan". It's not that I'm opposed to referring to myself as a "Witch". I've used the word often with great fondness. Unfortunately, at times there is nothing that slams an open mind shut quicker than hearing the word spoken aloud.

I believe that if we are ever going to change the way we are perceived, we first need the opportunity to educate. If someone recoils in fear (or laughter) when you say, "I'm a Witch", chances are they are going to hear very little of what you say afterwards.

Many Wiccans have chosen to drop the word "Witch" when describing themselves simply because of the stigma associated with it. Personally, I see no need to change the way I define myself in order to make others feel more at ease, nor do I feel the need to wield the word like a sword to convince myself of my own abilities. Those who can, do....without unnecessary pretention.

Despite the degree of acceptance the Wiccan religion has attained, there are still people in third World countries being beheaded for the practice of Witchcraft. That's not to suggest that this might actually happen here any time soon, but there's a nut born every minute whose intentions are a lot scarier than anything I might conjure up! Case in point, the Westboro Baptist Church...nuff' said.

The Pagan community has struggled for years to be taken seriously. Every time an article is written, a documentary or horror flick is filmed, whenever someone claiming to be Wiccan or a Witch portrays themselves in an unfavorable light, it reflects on the entire community as a whole.

A truly knowledgeable and proficient occultist doesn't need to play the "Witch" card as a means of control over a bad relationship, to rebel against one's parents or to intimidate their coworkers. This might also include boasting about whom might be on the receiving end of your next Full Moon's spellcasting. In fact, if you've been wielding a "Witch's Blade" anywhere outside a properly cast Circle, I would suggest you find an alternate use for your other magickal tools as well. I hear a cauldron makes a lovely planter.

In Darkness, Light!


Sunday, January 2, 2011

A New Year's "Pffft"

Happy 2011 Family and Friends!

I suspect I'm supposed to be writing something about the New Year's beginning or last year's ending. Pffft!

Years begin..other's end. Some of those things that we wish wouldn't follow us into the New Year are going to, whether we want them to are not. Some are bad memories, relationships or unresolved issues that had no intention of leaving us behind merely because the year did. Some of those things are a process of learning or of grieving and require the passage of time before we can let them go. They were not meant to be interrupted.

There are some things however, that we really don't need to drag along into the New Year, do we? There's a reason for the adage, "out with the old, in with the new". It's sorta like cleaning out your closets. There are things that no longer fit the person we've become and instead of letting it go, we hang on by means of some emotional attachment.

Still, we may find new pleasure in things that we'd forgotten...those classics that withstand the test of time. Some will be worth revisiting, while others are just taking up the space better utilized by that which serves to enrich the person we've become.

Personally, I intend to continue with what worked best for me last year. I will find inspiration where the wind takes me, passion in that which draws me to the flame, allow the waters of knowledge to flow through me and trust in the Earth to keep me grounded. I will find pleasure in all those things that nurture my Spirit.

I will *try* to meditate more, learn as many new things present themselves, dance as long as I'm breathing and say I love you as often as I can.

In Darkness, Light!