Thursday, October 10, 2013

'Tis The Season Of The Witch

The entertainment industry goes in cycles of what its favorite "creature du jour" is.  First it was Vampires (sparkly and more traditional) with Dracula in his many forms up to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, The Vampire Diaries, Being Human and (gag) Twilight.  Zombies have had a long shambling run which isn't quite finished due to the popularity of the television show The Walking Dead.

Supernatural creatures and beings have always been popular.  People love to be scared and intrigued, drawn to the power and the fantasy of something otherworldly from our folk tales and nightmares.  People want to be vampires, ghosts, werewolves, shape changers and whatever else strikes their fancy.   People dress as zombies and participate in zombie walks, even the CDC (Center for Disease Control) has a page on how to prepare for the "Zombie Apocalypse" as a way to show people how to prepare for a natural disaster!

Now, for better or worse, it appears as if "it's the season of the Witch".  It started with Hansel and Gretal Witch Slayers, Snow White and the Huntsman, Mirror Mirror and Maleficent in the movies, Once Upon a Time, Witches of East End, Sleepy Hollow and American Horror Story - Coven on television.  

There have always been witches in movies and on TV with Bewitched, Tabitha, Buffy and Charmed to the classic Wizard of Oz to Disney's Snow White.  The new fascination with witches seems to be more intense and less innocent...the characters are darker, more powerful, scary and dangerous.

There is much discussion regarding this in the Pagan community.  Most of us really enjoy the movies and television shows.  They are taken for what they are, fantasy, entertainment and only a smattering of reality.  If real witchcraft were shown on television it wouldn't last long as it would be incredibly boring!  The problem with being the "creature du jour" is the perception of others towards witches and witchcraft.  I know it sounds silly, but it is a real concern.

People fear that which they do not understand.  The concern is that the dark nature of many of these programs combined with the historically incorrect view of Witches perpetuated by monotheist religion will cause problems for modern Pagans and Witches.  There are cases almost every month of Pagan homes and events being bombed, vandalized, picketed and communities trying to drive out store fronts that cater to Pagan needs.  Facebook recently was contacted by numerous Pagan organizations and convinced to remove two pages that were seriously advocating burning and killing Pagans and Witches.  Facebook had originally not considered these pages in violation of their "hate speech" guidelines!

There seems to be a very loud minority of people in the United States who have a twisted version of their religion and are convinced that anyone who does not agree with them is the spawn of the devil.  This combined with the hate filled rhetoric that floods the Internet and other media and the willingness of misguided individuals to act upon it is scary.

Another less dangerous yet worrisome result of Witches being popular is the influx of people who suddenly decide that they are a witch!  They will go out buy a pentagram, maybe read one book or look at an Internet site then go forth into the world with little knowledge, inflated attitude and ego causing more public misconception.  I personally feel that this is going to be the more serious problem.

  Perhaps some of the "want to be" witches will eventually make the commitment to learn, study and dedicate their life to this path.  With luck the others will only last as long as the Witch is the "creature du jour" and then quickly move on to the next big thing.

The Pagan community will always have to deal with religious extremists and public misconceptions.  They have always existed and always will.  You will be infuriated at their ignorance, ridicule and intolerance and saddened by their hatred.  Generally you are safe as long as they don't show up on your doorstep with torches and pitchforks.

The number of people in the world who classify themselves as Pagan (I'm using the term "Pagan" to mean every type of Pagan path, Wicca and Witchcraft practitioners etc.) is huge, much larger than most would imagine.  Wicca is the fastest growing religion in the world and has been for several years. The majority of Pagans and Witches are "in the broom closet", meaning they practice in secrecy mainly because of the of the public, their former churches and their families.  Those of us who are "out of the broom closet" try to educate either through Pagan Pride events, community outreach or by just answering questions when asked.


Le Petite Crone says:  Please, If you want to play at being a Witch wait for Halloween!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Mini Minion Rupert

For those of you who are regular readers you are familiar with my dogs - my "Mini-Minions" Rupert and Boomer.  

Boomer is a psychotic seven year old miniature Australian Shepherd.  He has a wicked sense of humor and is full of energy.  Boomer is really my beloved spouses dog, even though he gets quite frantic if he doesn't get enough attention from his favorite little Crone.  Rupert is my sweetie pup, he's a 10 1/2 year old English Bull Terrier.  He's blind, has one eye, a bad heart and is in the early stages of "doggie dementia" Canine Cognitive Dysfunction.  

It's been very hard watching my dear Rupert deteriorate through the years.  He's been such a solid little tank of love and devotion.  I'm not sure I could have gotten through my own physical difficulties without his cuddles and kisses.

One of the things you accept when you bring a dog into your life is knowing you will outlive them and that you have to watch them grow old, get sick and all the pain that goes with that.  I've have many dogs in my life, I've loved them all but Rupert has been special.

We noticed a few days ago that his remaining eye is turning red.  The pressure is so intense that it is hemorrhaging.  His vet told us that he is in excruciating pain and that his eye needs to be removed.  When his first eye was removed his heart stopped three times during the procedure.  He's much older now, and he has a bad heart.  

We have decided to take the risk and have his eye removed.  His surgery was suppose to be this morning but there was a county wide power outage.  I had a reprieve and have been able to spend a long quiet day cuddling with my mini minion.  We have watched the flames in the fireplace (well, I have anyway), we've shared some peanut butter and crackers and I've been able to tell him how much I love him.

Tomorrow will bring what it will bring.  I hope Rupert makes it through the surgery and once recovered he will no longer be in pain and I'll have more time with him.  If he doesn't make it through the surgery I know I've done all I can possibly do to give him a good life, one filled with love, play, walks, tennis balls, cuddles and cookies.

Please keep Rupert in your thoughts and prayers.

Le Petite Crone says:  Be strong and brave my sweetie pup!  I love you!

10/04/2013 - UPDATE:
Rupert update: We dropped him off at 8 AM, they called about 10 to say they were prepping him and so far so good. His vet called about 12:30 PM and said that he is all done and Rupert did fine. We are so relieved. I was very worried about him. He's bleeding much more than he should be, probably due to the pressure and all the pain meds he's been on for so he's got a pressure wrap on his head for the time being. But he's sitting up and listening to stuff..a good sign. We will be picking him up at 4 PM and will have to take him back on Monday. Not out of the woods, but much closer! Thank you all for your good energy and prayers....if you don't mind please keep them coming for a few more days. I'll keep posting updates...I know he's got lots of friends out there.
 Rupert update: It was a VERY rough night. Rupert was very upset, in pain, agitated..he ate a little food (had to hand feed) but wouldn't drink any water. He was breathing so hard and his heart was thumping so rapidly I was afraid he'd have a heart attack! We made up a nice bed in the ex-pen which we put in the corner of our bedroom (he can't fit in his regular kennel with "the cone"). I ended up laying in the ex-pen with him trying to keep him calm. We called the vet (thank goodness she gave us her home number) to see if we could give him more of the liquid pain meds (yes we could), plus a dose of his old pain meds. I finally got some water into him by using a syringe and squirting water into his mouth. He finally went to sleep about 3 AM and I crawled into bed fully dressed. The vet called this morning to check on him. We were out of his old pain meds so she is making the trip in on the weekend to get some for him. Hopefully today will be a bit better. No food yet this morning, a little water via syringe. He's sleeping on the couch next to me. He had his liquid pain meds and a dose of his old pain medication. He's had his morning antibiotic dose. Keep the good energy, thoughts and prayers coming. I do appreciate it!
Rupert update: Well the little tank must be getting better as he's cranky and uncooperative. He decided today that under no circumstance would he drink water. He didn't drink anything until about 8:30 PM this evening...then he drank and drank and drank. His eye is pooching out a bit and very purple and he was bleeding from his nose. Called the vet and she said that was normal, blood pools in the socket and will have to be reabsorbed and some of it will leak out of his nose...but she and I decided that it's best to keep him on his full pain meds even though it dopes him up a bit...that way he'll stay calmer. We'll wean him off the pain meds once the stitches are out. I'm very, very tired as he is taking ALL my attention. I try to leave the dreaded cone of shame off as much as I can so he'll be comfortable...but I have to watch him like a hawk in case he decides to scratch his eye. It's been a long day, but every day he's a little bit better. I can take him out on the leash and he's able to go up and down the stairs to the we don't have to carry him now...a big improvement...he is a pretty heavy little dude!
 Thank you, Le Petite Crone.

Friday, September 20, 2013

My Harvest, Looking To The Past

Autumn is once again here.  My favorite season.  For me it's a time to look back over the year, take stock of my "harvest" and contemplate what I have accomplished.  This year was one of illness, frustration, hard work on the path to regain my health, changes for family and new beginnings with a new son-in-law and very soon a new grandchild.  

This year also brought spiritual changes, insights, and new spiritual awakenings for some dear friends.  Because of this I found myself thinking back to the beginning.  I realized how some of my earliest memories and my relationship with my father shaped my beliefs and made me the Crone that I am today. 

When I was a young child, before I even started school, we lived in an old house.  I don't know how old it was, but to me it felt ancient.  I would sometimes wake at night, freezing cold, and see a strange woman walking through the room and then vanish.  You would think that a small child, awakened by a vision of an unknown woman in her room would be filled with fear, cry out or have nightmares.  I never did.  I remember more a sense of wonder and curiosity.  I knew the woman wasn't a dream because I was awake...she was real and she could disappear!  Wow, how amazing was that!

I asked my father about the woman and he told me to only talk to him about her.  He said "Your mom doesn't see her, only you and I do.".  I was, even at that age amazed that he believed me.  This began a life long connection with my father in a way that I don't think my brother or sister had or even knew about.  We would from that moment up until his death discuss what I now think of as spiritual things.  

My father use to have prophetic dreams about when someone in the family would die.  In his dream he would see an old country home with a beautiful yard.  Family members who had passed on would be in the yard preparing for an outside meal.  Planks were stretched over saw-horses loaded down with food.  Everyone was happy and enjoying each others company.  Around the yard was an old fashioned white picket fence.  Some members of the family were painting the fence.  Whenever someone was going to pass on, he would have this dream and that person would be in the gathering.  The person always died within two or three weeks.  I know this dream bothered him a great deal.  He would talk to me, asking if he should tell the person who was going to die about his dream or not.  As a child I knew he was just talking to himself, I just happened to be the one listening.  As I got older we had some amazing discussions regarding the ethics of "knowing".  He never told anyone about their impending death, he kept the knowledge to himself.

On one occasion he told my mother and grandmother about the dream and they did not believe him.  They made fun of his concerns over a silly dream.  After the person in question died they refused to talk to him about it and he never mentioned it again...except to me.  He would, in fact, make fun of spiritual things such as psychics, ghosts and divination.  I felt this was his way to avoid ridicule.  In our conversations however, his beliefs were quite different.  

My father was living with me and my husband when his mother passed away.  I was awakened by the phone call from his brother and took the message that my grandmother had passed.  I opened the door to the downstairs basement, where my father's bedroom was and he was standing, fully dressed at the bottom of the stairs.  He looked up and said "I know".  I just nodded.

We had discussions about Tarot and Runes as a tool to focus your intuition.  He didn't believe in them, in fact he thought that they were silly, yet I discovered after his death that he had been taking lessons on Tarot reading.  I believe that many of my father's spiritual beliefs were forged in the hell and fire of combat during World War II.  He was a U.S. Marine and fought in almost every campaign during the war in the Pacific.  He told me that you see and experience so much that is unexplainable during war and it shakes your beliefs to the core.  It was after the war that he started to have his dream, and see things.

I firmly believe that he had his "dream" about his own death.  The last time I saw my father alive he said "good-bye" when he left.  This was very unusual as he had never said that before.  His usual parting was "I'll see you later".  It left me unsettled and while stunned by his passing I was not surprised.

 As I grew older I hid my difference from everyone but my father, hid that I sensed things and saw things.  I hid that I didn't walk at all to the same drummer as all the other children.  I so desperately wanted to fit in.  It wasn't until early high school that the stress of pretending to be someone I wasn't got to be too much.  I purchased a set of Runes and haven't looked back since.  My beliefs have grown, changed and evolved.  As a Crone I've "come out of the broom closet" and am open about who and what I am.  My abilities have morphed, grown and become more focused.  I am who I am and I owe my father a huge debt of gratitude.  He was never comfortable with his "knowing", his spiritual side weighed heavily upon him.  He told me once that after the war his church held no answers for him and he wasn't sure where to look, but he was glad he always had me to talk to.  

I hope I helped him find some sense of peace.  I am so thankful for him because he helped me feel comfortable about myself.  I knew I was not alone.  He gave me the gift of normality and acceptance that I don't think I would have had without him.  He understood me even if he didn't understand himself.

Le Petite Crone says:  I love and miss you so much dad!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Unusual Posting....

I am going to do something a bit unusual for this posting - I want to direct you to another blog I think the message is important and should be read and shared.  Be aware that the blog I'm directing you to has graphic content.

I totally agree with the message in this blog - however I would like to ad that as a Pagan I see violence against women as a result of ALL radical, hard line, right wing, male dominated religions not just one.  

Any country that does not value women, educate and treat women as equal to men will have this problem.

I see a trend in this country by many to turn the clock back on gains women have made in society.  Religion, Government, the Supreme Court all seem eager to invade our vaginas and control what we can and can not do.

Here is the link - the posting is "The War AGAINST Women"

Le Petite Crone says:  Please read - share - discuss - pass on

Sunday, July 28, 2013

A Love Letter

I have been thinking lately about the direction my life is going.  As a Crone you do that a lot.  You realize that you have far more years behind you than in front of you.  This knowledge gives you pause and you find yourself thinking about all sorts of ideas and things that you might never think about normally.

With weddings and births coming up my thoughts have turned to family (see posting "Life, Changes and Everything - July 12th).  I recently sent an e-mail to my older brother (also a blogger - The Geezer's Guide to Life) that had an attachment of quite a number of photos of the Los Angeles area taken in the 1940's and 50's.  He responded, waxing poetic about his childhood in Southern California.  All these thoughts reminded me of my childhood and how our views of them are so very different.  While my brother loved his, I hated mine.

We grew up in a rural part of a state that has a predominate religion.  My parents were not "good members" of the church and that spilled over on us as children.  I'm not sure if this caused my brother any problems but it did me.  I can remember being excluded from classroom activities because I wasn't "good", having children tell me that they couldn't play with me, and while the rest of the class went across the street to a private home for bible reading I had to sit in the Principal's office.  I grew up with no friends, feeling excluded.  I know this is why I have such a distaste of  organized religion  and those who proselytize.

I am a middle child and unfortunately conform to that stereotype.  I am a mediator,  I compromise and I have always given up things that I want in order to maintain peace and harmony in the family.  I was a good girl, I took the classes my parents suggested rather than the classes I really wanted, I didn't go out but stayed home to help, I didn't go to dances or the prom as I knew it would cost too much money.  Like my brother I gave up hopes of college because I knew my parents could not afford it.

I was never ME!  I hid who I was, what I thought, what I believed, what I wanted.  Once I was on my own I married, had a child and divorced.  Then I spent everything, physical, monetarily, emotionally on my child.  While I have absolutely no regrets about this at all, I once again left "ME" behind in order to do the right thing.

I don't want anyone to think that I'm complaining because I'm not!  I realize now as a Crone that everything I did was my own choice.  As a child though, especially one who has a natural tendency to be quiet and compromise I honestly didn't think I did.

So, now we come down to the point of this posting.....a love letter.  

I love my husband (Himself). 

Dear Love,

You have given me the courage and support to be ME.  You may not like some of the things I do, you may not understand them, but you still have always been there for me and I can not express how great of a gift that is.

I know you may not approve of me getting tattoos (even if you secretly love them!), they are a rebellion against all that I was.  I am celebrating in ink and blood all that I had always wanted to be and have now become because of your love!  I never went to dances as a teenager, but now, because of your love, as a Crone, I belly dance with a sword balanced on my head.

I have the freedom to BE and I love the wild free woman that with your help I have become.  I can look into the mirror and see my silver hair and wrinkles and love who I am...all because you love me.  I only hope that my love has given you what you need in your life.

Le Petite Crone says:  You are never too old to write a love letter!



Friday, July 26, 2013

Sharp Pointy Things

I love sharp pointy things, I always have.  I have a love and passion for swords and knives.  I know my fascination for bladed weapons comes from my father.  He was a U.S. Marine and one of my most treasured mementos from him is his K-Bar fighting knife.  As a young girl (6 or 7 years old) I would sit for hours listening to him tell me his (sanitized) war experiences from the Pacific and Korea.  As I grew older the sanitized version slowly morphed into the more accurate stories.  Even as a child though, he didn't shield me from too much of the truth.  I knew knives and swords could kill, but they could also keep you safe.

  I loved to sit and watch my Dad sharpen all his knives.  To sharpen a knife by hand takes talent.  It's an art that very few people can really master.  My Dad had the touch, and he passed on his passion for a razor sharp blade to my Son who also has the touch.  I however am just passable, good enough to keep my kitchen knives usable but no more.  There is something mesmerising about the hiss and rasp of a blade lightly sliding along an oiled whet stone.  You enter into an almost magical trance, your fingers becoming one with the blade, you breath in time with your passes of the blade.  It's relaxing and energizing all at the same time.

As an adult I started collecting swords and knives, I even belly dance with a sword.  Many cultures around the world all  have their own version of a sword dance from the Orient to Africa, Scotland and the America's. 

A sword or knife seems magical to me as they contain all four elements: air, water, earth and fire.  All of the elements are forged into one life giving, life taking, symbolic, mystical creation.  Swords represent transition, power, leadership, rank and sovereignty.  The queen or king creates a knight by tapping him upon the shoulder with a sword.  Arthur was king with the help of the magical sword Excalibur!  Officers in almost every military carry swords as a symbol of rank.  Of course swords and knives are also quite phallic in nature and many believe that this is the only symbolic nature of blades.  The act of cutting or stabbing with a blade can also be looked at as a metaphor for the act of creation with the phallus and the blood.  You create death from life or save a life by creating death.

In alchemy the sword is a symbol of purification, the metaphorical sword cleanly piercing the spiritual soul of man. This symbolic action sacrifices physical bondage to release a path to ethereal or enlightened freedom.

In the the Celtic tradition the sword is associated with the god Nuada, the first king of Tuatha De Danann. In fact, Nuada's great sword is considered one of the four Celtic treasures (sword, stone, spear, and cauldron). Nuada was associated with the supernatural forces of the underwater realm.  Archaeologists have found many ancient Celtic swords under water. These may be offerings to Nuada made by the ancient Celts honoring him by passing their broadswords into the waters; effectively insuring that the power of Nuada would run through their own veins.

This is a very powerful statement as Celtic swords were considered to be an extension of their being. To release such an intensely personal, valuable and meaningful object was indeed an honor. Nuada was said to recognize this sacrifice and live long within the hearts of men who recognize his nobility with this sacrificial gesture.  Could this be the origin of the sword Excalibur being raised from the waters by The Lady of the Lake?

The swords of central and northern Africa are deeply symbolic of transition. The quillons (cross guard on the hilt) of swords were designed so that one side turns heavenward, the other side turns earthwards. This is symbolic of the powerful connection between sky and earth, and further solidifying the symbolism of life and death.

In China dreams of swords indicate birth gender. It is believed that dreaming of a woman drawing a sword from water indicates the birth of a son. Many swords together or dancing swords in a dream indicates the dreamer is experiencing a fear of limitation and or avoiding death issues

Many swords are given names in order to honor the spirit of the blade.  This holds true especially with the Samurai Sword.  There is something truly mystical about Samurai Swords.  A traditionally forged sword may take years to create and is priceless.  The ore is hand mined, sorted, purified (but only so much).  The ore melted in fire driven to just the right heat by hand pumped bellows.  The metal is formed, beaten, bent, and folded thousands of times.  

Two different qualities of metal are used in the sword, one softer and more flexible the other stiffer.  The sword must be strong yet able to bend.  When the sword is ready the straight blade is plunged into icy water, the different qualities of metals cooling and shrinking at different rates causing the blade to slowly bend into it's distinctive delicate curve.  If any step in the process was incorrect at any point the blade is defective and perhaps years of work will be for nothing.

The blacksmith was an honored profession in many cultures.  Here was a man who could harness the elements and create a thing of use and beauty.   His work was vital to the survival of the community or tribe.  What he did was akin to sorcery and you can see that reflected in folk tales, poems and images throughout time. 

 Knives weren't always created from metal - I am lucky enough to own two obsidian blades (both have new hilts).  These blades combine all of the elements as well - created in the volcanic depths of the earth, cooled by the air and rain then crafted by hand into weapons.

I often hold these blades and wonder who created them, where did the stone come from, what history have these beautiful creations seen?

I know it seems strange for an old Crone like myself to wax poetic over a weapon.  I am a creation of my upbringing and like a sword tempered by my age.  I can see and appreciate the beauty, history and mystical nature of swords and knives.  I love them!

Le Petite Crone says: En Garde!   

Friday, July 12, 2013

Life, Changes and Everything

  I've been remiss in posting to my blog.  No excuse, just life getting in the way and a large dose of being lazy.

There has been a great deal going on recently that has taken my attention as well as that of my beloved spouse "Himself".  Life on "The Peninsula" is interesting even when things are slow.

The weather has finally changed from Winter to Summer...well at least for what passes as summer here.  The days usually start out foggy, misty and cool and even if the sky turns that odd shade of blue we so seldom see it rarely gets above 70 degrees.  Himself and I finally removed the flannel sheets from our it must be Summer!

We have some major life changes happening to our family.  

We will be celebrating our daughter's wedding in August.  Himself gets to walk her down the aisle.  He is having all the appropriate fatherly pangs lamenting the loss of his little girl.  It's hard for a Dad to realize that he won't be the primary male in his baby's life anymore. 

Our son and his wife are expecting their first child in September.  This will be our fourth grandchild but the first grandchild by blood for Himself.  Another notch in his "Am I getting older?" belt I'm afraid.

You will survive My Love!  I promise!

Our other son and his family are thinking of moving to the mid-west.  This will take them much further away and make our being able to visit difficult.  We feel that we don't get to see them as often as we'd like as it is.

All of these things are normal life changes that everyone goes through at one time or another.  Marriages, births, leavings.  It's what life is made of.  The ceremony, celebration and acknowledgement of the change is what holds a family, community, and society together.  They are important and vital.

There are other changes that happen that are worth recognizing, acknowledging and  perhaps even celebrating.  The changing of the seasons, the cycle of life in my flock of crows, the change in my own body to crone.  Revelations and new found clarity in my spiritual path.  A friend discovering a vital new element in hers. 

It's taken me years to learn how to slow down and enjoy my life.  I still have to occasionally remind myself that it's OK to do so. 

Le Petite Crone says:  Don't let life get in the way of living!



Friday, May 10, 2013

Nine Months of Hell

I've been trying to publish a new blog for months now but it hasn't happened.  I was halfway through composing a post about the spiritual nature of the number three but I think it will have to wait for a while.

The past nine months have been perhaps the roughest of my life.  I've touched on some of my issues in previous blogs.

To recap my adventures in Hades....In September of last year my back which had been in bad shape for over twenty years became so bad that I finally gave in and decided that surgery was the answer.  I had my surgery in October (Samhain Thoughts - 10/17).  I had a horrible case of hives because of an allergic reaction to antibiotics.  Following my back surgery I had three months of physical therapy, plus a case or Norovirus (The Long Road Back - 11/27)Then I got bonked under my chin by my Loyal Mini-Minion Rupert (my blind Bull Terrier) which resulted in a concussion.  Many days of nausea, dizziness, poor concentration and just feeling bad followed.

My last posting (Spring - One Step Forward - Several Back - 3/24) I mentioned that my beloved spouse Himself and I had stomach problems (NOT Norovirus!).  My stomach pain started about two days after his.  While he started to feel somewhat better mine got worse.  Late on a Sunday night I decided that if I couldn't get a doctors appointment I'd go to the emergency room the next day.  I managed to get a doctors appointment which led to blood tests and x-rays.  Absolutely nothing showed up....I was totally normal (HA! fooled them!).  My doctor luckily had me see a different doctor the next morning.  He had me go in for a CT scan and asked me to wait at the hospital and he would get the results immediately.  I ended up in surgery a couple of hours later...despite no indications (such as a high white blood cell count or fever) I had a gangrenous and perforated appendix.  Huge quantities of antibiotics!  More hives!  Oh, Yippee!

 My hives started to fade and then I had almost 10 days of, shall we be polite "the runs"?  Once again to the doctor.....Taadaaa!  I had "C-Diff"  (Clostridium difficile). A bacterial infection caused by having massive amounts of antibiotics which kill off all your good bacteria leaving the Clostridium difficle bacteria free reign.  My doctor was up in the air about if she should hospitalize me or not.  She ended up having me get a saline IV to help with the bad dehydration along with a number of other tests...but no hospital.  The cure for C-Diff?  MORE antibiotics - more hives!  Oh, Yippee!

After nine months of one medical problem, issue, accident after another I was at my wits end.  I was near up.  "What Next???" was about all I could think.  Then I had an "ah-ha!" moment.

My evening ritual includes a mantra which I recite to the powers that be.  I thank them for all that I have, all that I am grateful for.  I had been saying "I don't want to be unhealthy" as a way to ask for good health.  A long time ago I realized that if I asked Himself something like "Don't forget to take out the trash" he evidently was only hearing "forget to take out the trash" as most people tend to block out "don't" and "no" and other negatives.    I realized that perhaps the "powers" were hearing "I want to be unhealthy" and they were more than happy to comply!  I've changed my thought process.  I now say "I am healthy", "I am happy", "I am fit" and "I have energy!"....and it's working.  The past few days I have felt better than I have since the middle of last year.  

I should have known better.  As a Crone I've done craft work for myself and others.  I am always VERY careful in creating a petition or request to deities, spirits or powers.  Any loophole is gleefully exploited and you can get unexpected and sometimes unwanted results.  A careful Crone is a happy Crone!

So I guess it comes down to the "Power of Positive Thinking" (which dates me!).  As a Crone I know that you DO manifest what you think.  In order to manifest what is best and right for you and your life you have to have focus and clarity.  My nine months of hell made me feel sorry for myself and lose that.  I like to think that someone heard my mantra and sent the "ah-ha!" as a smack to the head.  I find that "the powers that be" tend to do that for long as you listen.  I'm back on course, I've regained my focus and clarity.  I am thankful for the challenges that I've had because as always, they have been a powerful learning opportunity and have helped me.  I'm a better little old Crone.

Le Petite Crone says:   Be positive in your life!


Sunday, March 24, 2013

Spring - One Step Forward - Several Back

It's finally Spring!

Buds are opening into new green leaves, Alder catkins are littering the deck, Crocus, Daffodils, and Hyacinths are in bloom.  To quote my maternal Grandmother "Spring has come, the grass has riz, I wonder where the Robin is?"....they're  here too.  Spring is a time of change and renewal, going forward, emerging from your winter cocoon of wool, wood smoke and flannel sheets.  It's time, like the spring flowers to raise your face to the sun and enjoy the season.

Not so fast....

It's cold here on "The Peninsula" - we don't have flannel sheets however we still have our fleece sheets on the bed.  Our next step will be to go to simple flannel once it warms up a bit.  We are still huddling in front of our fire place.  Enjoying the outdoor wonders of Spring is out of the question.

I recently recovered from a dog caused concussion (my blind, one eyed Bull Terrier, Mini Minion Rupert launched himself up onto the couch hitting me under my chin, causing a mild concussion).  I was laid low with dizziness, headache, nausea, sore neck, swollen face, bruised chin and unable to chew for a couple of days.  Rupert was sorry, so was I!

Now my beloved spouse Himself and I both have what we thought was Norovirus, however it's lasted way too long (according to what we have read) to be that.  So we have a mystery ailment that has us doubled over, in pain, unable to eat much and just generally miserable.

Happy Spring!

On the world stage I do have to admit that even though I am a Pagan I find the new Pope charming and quite a breath of fresh air.  Time will tell if his humble nature is genuine.  I have no doubt that the Catholic Church will remain the archaic bastion that it has always been.  Pope Francis himself seems to be a step forward.

 On 6 February this year Kepari Leniata, a 20-year-old mother of two living in the highlands of Papua New Guinea, was accused of bewitching a six-year-old boy to death. Villagers stripped and bound her, then dragged her to a rubbish dump where she was tortured with hot irons until she confessed. The police arrived, but were held back by locals who doused Leniata in petrol and burned her alive. The UN human rights office explained that this was just the latest of numerous lynchings, each conforming to a pattern found in many parts of the developing world where witch-beliefs are strong and uncontained by law or authority.  A step back...

"Yana" a Syrian Pagan was  killed in late June of last year, Yana’s brother, who had become radicalized, informed the rebels that his sister was a Pagan.  They took her, tortured her, then her brother publicly denounced her as a whore and a witch.  After that, she was drug out onto the street, raped, and killed.  A step back...

On February 17, 2013 a segment was aired on the Fox network’s popular morning show, Fox and Friends.  The segment was hosted by Tucker Carlson, Alyson Camerota, and Clayton Morris.  The segment centered on the University of Missouri’s, MU Guide to Religions, and the fact that the guide includes Pagans/Wiccans.  In the first minute of the segment Mr Carlson states…“The bad side of Wiccanism is, it’s obviously a form of Witchcraft, but the upside is, you get a ton of holidays. 20% of all school holidays as described by the University of Missouri are Wiccan holidays. 20% of all!  Right, but you get 20 holidays now if you are a Wiccan. That’s the one to go with right? If you’re gonna pick one, go with the one that has the most holidays.  Except, any religion who’s most sacred day is Halloween, I just can’t take seriously."  I don't consider this as a step back because, well....consider the source.  The "newscaster" went from 20% to 20 (actually there were 8 holidays).  They didn't do their homework obviously (again consider the source) because Wicca is a Federally recognized religion.  If you are a follower of Wicca in the military and die in the service of your country you can officially have a pentagram on your headstone.  I also consider this in a way as a step forward as Fox and Friends Tucker Carlson issued an on air apology after the Pagan community launched a protest campaign of letters, e-mails and picketing the studio.  Not that the apology was sincere....but he gave it.

 So here I am, a tired, cold, sick old Crone...looking wistfully out her window at the magic of Spring wanting to get outside to tend my herbs and clean the yard.  I'm waiting for this years flock of baby crows, waiting for the sun to shine....wishing I felt better.  But even with the steps backwards that happen around the world there are enough steps forward for the Pagan community (whatever your path) that it does give me some hope. 

So happy Spring...enjoy the season.

Le Petite Crone says:  Rejoice in the steps going forward!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Random Bits & An Angry Rant

At the time I wrote my last blog posting (November 27, "The Long Road Back") I was still recovering from my October back surgery.  It's been a long few months for me.  I thought I'd share a few random thoughts and one angry rant that has been stewing about in my little Crone brain.

I have continued with my physical therapy and only have one more appointment then I will be finished.  I am happy to report that I am doing quite well.  I have returned to Belly Dancing and actually have more range of motion than I did prior to my surgery!  I think this is the best my back has felt in over twenty years.  We even have almost finished paying for the surgery!

I had several bouts of illness during my recovery.  Because my immune system was trashed by all the chemicals used in anesthesia I have caught every little bug that I came in contact  with.  This combined with the dark, dreary, rainy conditions on "the peninsula"  caused bouts of depression that I had to fight.  I normally enjoy our weather here.  The fog, rain and mist appeal to me but not this time.  I found myself not wanting to do anything, go anywhere, talk to anyone.  I wish that there was some way to erase the gene in my system that makes me prone to depression.  As I've aged I've learned the signs of an oncoming bout and while I can usually exercise or self talk myself out of depression this time it was just too much.

Christmas was just my beloved spouse Himself, my loyal mini-minions Rupert and Boomer and I.  We did have my step son and his wife, my step daughter and her friend from Germany come visit after the holidays.

I've finished with my "random bits" and now for my "Angry Rant"....... 

 Prior to the holidays I had found a wonderful source for greeting cards.  I purchased some "Mid Winter" cards and mailed these to several friends and relatives.  I was surprised by some of the reactions.  Most of my friends liked them but I had no direct comments from most.  However I had one acquaintance who has started to send me messages trying to save my soul, telling me to read the bible, accept Jesus etc.  I have another acquaintance who has stopped talking to me.  I actually find this quite amusing but also sad.

I have had the same beliefs since early pre-teens.  As I have aged, matured and studied  my beliefs, while basically the same, have matured, refined and become more focused.  I am the same person I have always been.  I am the same person who had long conversations with my father about my beliefs and was amazed that he shared a number of them.  I am the same person my acquaintances have known and accepted up until this point.

While I have never "flaunted" my beliefs, I've never really hidden them either.  Perhaps I am more open as a Crone than I have been in the past, I don't know.  I don't think anyone should be forced to hide who or what they are.  I can empathize with the LGBT community, I really can.  When people discover that I am an animist and polytheist there is usually acceptance or that look of pity, scorn, sympathy and sometimes even fear (break out the pitchforks, your crucifix, and lets start burning at the stake).  Get over it folks, not everyone has the same beliefs...that doesn't make one better than the other, one right or one wrong.  My faith is my faith, I don't try to force it on you.  I respect you and your faith as long as you don't preach to me or try to ram your beliefs down my throat.  I have as strong a belief in my faith as you do in yours, it has brought me comfort in times of need, joy into my life and inspiration and help when needed.

So, there you go....I may lose a few friends over this, I may face ridicule from others, but so be it.

Le Petite Crone says: