Halfway There – Between Darkness and Light
Dear Beautiful Friends,
I invite you to take a moment and gaze inward with some quiet breath. Where are you at right now? How have you survived winter? Are you in touch with your longings? Do you recognize your shadow side at play with your quest for light? If yes, you are exactly in synch with the season! If you feel a bit crabby, tired, wrung out, hemmed in, hungry for some change, you are riding the season just fine!!
February 2 – Imbolc, the Pagan holiday that recognizes and honors the stirrings of new life. Earth begins to cast off her dark cloak and respond to the arrival of light. We are at the halfway point between Winter and Spring, a time when the ewe’s milk comes in – signifying lambing season, a time of hope and relief, when fires were lit all over the farmlands to clear away old growth, and make way for planting. In our part of the world, the sap is slowly beginning to awaken dormant trees.The Celtic Pagans celebrated Brighid, the goddess of Poetry, Healing, Smithcraft, and Midwifery on this special day. The lengthening periods of light awakened her. Later, the Christians adapted this celebration to their St Brigid in a celebration of Candlemas for their time of purification.This year it also happens to be a Full Moon – the time when we symbolically release that which no longer serves our higher and greater good.
The forces of light and warmth begin to call us to new growth and healing, while the darkness and cold keep us hidden in our shadow self. On a personal level the goddess invites us to gaze into the tension between these two forces. Do we recognize that our shadow – just like the groundhog’s, can make us want to run back into our cave, resisting change and personal growth?
If anyone had asked me to choose a sacred time of year to receive a new hip – I most certainly would have chosen Feb 2 – Imbolc! As it happened, it was gifted to me as an opening due to cancellation. How the universe works – oh my!! I am thrilled to participate in the secrets of life, in such a special way, on this blessed date!
Imbolc comes at a time when we are often weary of the daily challenge of the long winter, and for the ancestors, it was more than just a weary time. It was a time when they were beginning to run low on foods and stock. Imbolc offers us a new view and promise of life. This has always been a time of year when my waning energy just comes alive with excitement and gratitude for the whisper of secret life that will soon be blossoming! This year in particular I can relate to so much of this on both a spiritual and a physical level!!
I have walked a long and gifted winter’s journey into my own darkness and pain. I regret none of it – not the grief, fear, accomplishments, pain and acceptance of my own fragility and vulnerability. This is a necessary path to travel in becoming a fearless warrior. How does one become authentic, if not by living with one’s truth? So many gifts have come to me and I have learned so much!
One of the greatest gifts was learning to walk slowly and listen. Oh the magical walks I took alone into the forest during the spring, summer and fall! These walks became my initiation, my spiritual/physical/mental journey into transformation. All of my life, I have always walked with a very fast energetic stroll, enjoying the “high” of vigorous movement. Recently, in my limping, crooked state, pain and and imbalance forced me to slow down, learn to relish one prayerful step at a time, and make a spiritual connection with nature. In doing so, I received a profound gesture of kindness: insight into my shadow side, self revelation and the healing energy of the trees. Snake, crow, chipmunk, deer, inchworm, velvet moss, spider, running stream, fluffy rock, majestic Pine and fallen leaf, became my teachers and healers. Once again, the lesson comes home to me: true healing comes from within. The use of Western medicine or alternative medicine is merely a tool of choice. Healing comes when we have the inspiration, courage, discipline and grace to listen, and the faith to open our eyes and heart, to gaze directly into our shadow side. I learned to see, and to let go of resistance. A new contemplative phase of my life opened it’s doors wide and welcoming! I learned it is not so much about doing as it is about receiving, and just being. We often try so hard to DO and to be in control, that we forget to to be. Being allows us to let go of resistance. Being teaches us to breathe and enjoy the process of life.
Let each of us continue to learn what it means to make each footstep a prayer, and feel that sacred connection to earth and the creatures we share it with. The ability to listen profoundly with all of our senses, and let go of chatter and worry, becomes noticeably heightened as we feel the threads that connect us, the way sunlight breaking thorough the clouds will reveal the intricate silken threads of the spider’s web. Deeper self awareness, and our connection with the subtle and the magical forces of nature is wildly empowering. I believe this kind of lesson and experience is essential when learning to face discouragement and fear. Acknowledging our shadow is essential for discovering the light! Each walk filled me with an almost unspeakable and breathtaking sense of acceptance and calm. This authentic process left me longing to do a lot more solitary immersion and meditation, but also ready to walk into the busy world, centered, with a greater sense of peace and contentment. There were so many other gifts and self revelations in walking this journey, and I am very grateful.
Now – I am ready to be reborn! I am ready for lambing season, the purification, and Smithcraft mending in my body and spirit! I am ready to experience the stirrings of new possibility! I am ready to honor the goddess of healing in welcoming the modern miracle of a new joint! By the time that exciting first day of Spring arrives, I will be well on my way with my mending process and ready to walk powerfully into a new season of my life!
Thank you so much for the many kind messages, and support. I am deeply grateful and touched. Knowing that I am being held in such care and support is heart warming, and a welcome gift! I humbly request from each of you, a little prayer, a lit candle and a thought of healing energy sent my way on February 2nd. I envision a very speedy recovery, but I also plan to enjoy being waited on hand and foot by my guys for a short time!
. So often I struggle with sharing my little corner of the world experiences. I tend to imagine myself as an insignificant minute shimmer in the grander scheme of things. Who am I in this grand scheme of things, this precious world, filled with both incredible beauty and unimaginable suffering? What could my one little hip surgery have to do with any of the major happenings in a world so overwrought with crisis, global change, and threats to our very existence? I am a part of this existence, as are you. We are each the ocean in a drop of water. We must all tell our stories of healing and beauty! There are so many bad stories – if you watch the news. We need to infuse our sacred community with beautiful, empowering stories! All the energies of these life experiences wash over and through us and connect our souls, our very beings to one another. I am grateful to those who took the time to chat with me about their own hip replacement experiences! We are earth and stardust, and every moment of our being alive is worth recognition and honor. So many of you have been through some kind of similar journey, either personally or with family and friends – I have so often been tremendously inspired and changed, by your shared experiences. May my thoughts and experiences resonate, inspire, or welcome a response from you!
Brightest Blessings and Much Love!
~ Emmy Your Wild Woman