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Fierce, Sweet, Wise

Mercury retrograde is a time for introspection and examination. This MR, I decided to take this to heart, and experiment with deepening my practice. I know that sounds hoity toity and whatnot, but in reality what it means to me is that I’m looking at how to deal with my PTSD and how it affects my practice. Symptoms come and go, but when it’s bad, I have avoidance symptoms, particularly emotional numbing. If you’re unfamiliar with the terms, avoidance symptoms are the mind’s way of avoiding the emotions involved in the trauma; emotional numbing is exactly what it sounds like; you feel distance, not happy, not sad, just…nothing. It’s not “meh” either, because it’s not indifferent, unless you’d count “well I haven’t engaged in self-mutilation, that’s good, right?” as meh. Mild depression might be a better descriptor.

I have bouts of this off and on, some more severe than others. December 2014 was bad; I had two major deaths in the family that year. My grandmother I expected, because her dementia had been worsening for several years. My father – he had PTSD himself, and he disappeared a year before he died, so there was no goodbye, there was just him, gone who knows where, a stranger on the phone telling me that they had my Daddy at the morgue. So vacillating between depression, mourning, and emotional numbing is how I spent my holidays. Not that it was all bad – Loki’s been very patient with me. For all that people talk about Him, chaos, blah blah, He is a God Who understands grief. I get the impression that sometimes people think if you’re involved with a Deity that your life will be perfect and you’ll never have any problems. No one’s life is problem-free, and being involved with a God does mean that I have better tools to deal with my issues than I’d have on my own. I’m grateful for that.

And so all of that was still fresh in my mind when this Mercury retrograde rolled around, and when I looked at what I could or should do in terms of self-care, I decided to experiment with some different things, and one of them was a guided meditation called “Fierce, Sweet, Wise,” by David H. Wagner. The upshot of the meditation was to look at your life and examine which parts needed to be more fierce, sweet, or wise.

And as I’m sitting with the fierce portion, my writing comes up. You can’t be fierce when you’re numb.There are things I don’t write about not because they’re too private, not because they’re not relevant, I avoid them because they are emotionally charged.

And then we passed on to examining what in our lives deserves our sweetness? To be sweet is to be vulnerable. “You don’t have to fear being sweet, because you can be fierce when you need to defend yourself,” the instructor said, and the image of the doe came to me, as myself. She is fierce and sweet. And where is your sweetness? My heart chakra ached. It’s rooted in love. Do not tell Me otherwise, FREY’S daughter. Your sweetness is in your passion.

Finally, we came to wisdom. What parts of our lives need our wisdom? As I examined this part, all I could determine was that the only wisdom I have comes from love – the only knowing I have is that I know nothing, except love. And perhaps that is the only thing really worth knowing.

p.s. If this helps you or gives you ideas for your own reflections, great; I’d just like to add that there are no perfect people, Deities, or practices. Nobody embodies love all the time; sometimes even Freyja needs to cut a bitch.

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Lokean nun, writer, swamp witch. Heather is a Pagan monastic, writer, editor, and mother. She has written and edited for a variety of publications and social media, including science journals, romance novels, and technology blogs. She also holds degrees in education and speech-language pathology, and has a passion for historical linguistics.

Comments

  • SunRain MoonFire
    SunRain MoonFire Saturday, 07 February 2015

    Thank you!

  • Catherine Miles
    Catherine Miles Tuesday, 10 March 2015

    This is so perfect and spot on. Thank you so much for sharing it.
    You have given me hope, and I feel that he, Loki sort of drew me to this site to find this.
    Thank you again!

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