I feel like a week has gone by, disconnected from the cyber world and anything else outside of my immediate bubble, I have held space for those who needed me to share my strength while finding my own renewal in the process of release.
The wake was yesterday, and I hadn't anticipated actually getting to physically see Joe there. I was told he would be cremated. And he will be, today, but I thought it was happening the day before, so I had images of seeing his urn and his picture there, not him, himself. That took me back. As I've said before, this is a new process for me, I have only been to 2 other wakes. One was my stepfather's mother who, out of the 3 kids, I was the only one who met her a couple of times, so he asked me to go, and I did, to support him. He asked me to go to the casket, and again I did, but I didn't stand too close, it was a strange notion being there.
The second wake was for my husband's friend, essentially like a brother, who was cremated before the wake due to the severity of his injuries. I didn't know him or ever had a chance to meet him, but I was there to support my husband.
Last night was different, having come to know Joe and have him be family, I was reminded of funny moments and shared them with the family, not to distract, but to share. It was good for us all to laugh. I was overcome by emotions going up to him, waiting, like a small child, for him to wake up. His spirit was clearly there, many of us physically felt him, I know I did, and I held space in my heart with gratitude that he was in the arms of the Goddess, and that his renewal would be in perfection. Though it was hard to watch my MIL, a very strong womyn, unsure of what would happen next.
I had overheard her (though I think she meant for me to overhear) talking to the people at the funeral home and making plans to come in next week to finalize her own services. It's not surprising, but I just wish she didn't have to do this alone. That's how she wants it though, and we all need to respect her process of life and grief and death, whether we agree with it or not.
I had class on Wednesday with Christopher, and while I wasn't feeling entirely grounded, I wanted to be there. I felt like I wouldn't be a distraction in my flight, but that I needed to feel that sense of community around me, and I was glad I did. The class itself was great, past life is a passion of mine and our journeys to these lifetimes was filled with much information that I am quite excited about delving further into the mysteries of that time and come away with the tools that are awaiting me.
I also had a very powerful journey earlier that day to my spirit guide and got some wonderful information relative to where we are now, information that has been on my mind and he made clarifications to the process. Someone once made this joke that I don't have a sense of linear time because I am so in tune with the spirit realm, which is may or may not be true, but I feel ultimately connected to the Source, and to the guides and devas all around, and I am open to their guidance.
I was reminded as I listened to everyone sharing their experiences that some are very new to this path. It is, after all, Witchcraft I. Christopher and I had spoken before I joined that it was unnecessary for me to come in at level 1, but the perpetual student in me likes to start from the beginning, something he and I share. There are a few of us who are clearly not beginners, but returning to the beginner's mind is something we each seem to either want or need for this moment, and it's nice to have that mix within the group.
One of the students made this remark at how clearly I am experienced in this work, and I didn't really say anything relative to that statement, but rather continued speaking about the topic at hand about community. It was a continuation of what he had brought up during class that I could completely relate to and it was nice to have a one-on-one conversation about community and how to foster it. It was so in the moment it was perfect.
I've heard remarks over the years at how "seasoned" I am. I don't know about that. I have worked hard to establish more than a spiritual practice, but a way of life, a way of being. I have worked hard to reprogram that aspect of myself that falls prey to the dysfunctional ways of being and thinking in this world. That's not to say I don't have plenty of moments of being completely connected to it, but I don't want to simply view things in life as being "better or worse". I'm finding the magickal in the "mundane" and learning from each experience.
A friend once asked if I was simply looking for the good in everything because I didn't want to face the bad.
It's not about good and bad. I don't identify with good and bad. I'm not trying to make a "bad" outcome "good". I'm trying to see more of the magick in the circumstances around me that I have convinced myself (or believed from others) were not magickal. It's not replacing, it's all awareness. And really, doesn't it always come down to the fundamental aspects of awareness anyway?
After class Christopher and I had a long conversation, which could have easily gone on longer had it not gotten so late and he had class the next day and I had the wake. But it was a marvelous conversation, one that I needed to have with someone on this path. We have said in the past that we have quite similar beliefs and ways of practice/teachings, etc, and after class I needed to be able to express this thought in my head that had been surfacing to get an opinion and viewpoint outside of myself but with someone who had a similar way of understanding my thought process as well as someone who I could trust.
The conversation proved to be perfect timing and exactly what I needed. We spoke about what I had clumsily discussed as being "alien" and he had identified more as "the other", which I much prefer. He understood, he got it, and I wasn't alone in that moment of being.
He could see my sense of being different and feeling that in certain times more than others, and he, too, has those feelings. Beyond the scope of "oh I'm so different', no, even further into being "the other" even within our own community. It's hard to explain without starting from the beginning.
He spoke about the Wheel, and how most people identify with the notion of up = good, down = bad (and funny timing because I had blogged about that earlier that day, the synchronicity was nice and made me smile), and then there's the center. He said I work from the center, so I don't always identify with the up and down realities that others express, thus the feeling of the "others". It's not to say I don't step out of the center, because I do, but it's not my primary area of focus. He shared a story that was quite helpful in his own experiences of stepping out of the center, and it was affirming to hear it, and warming to hold that space of trust between us to share these kinds of thoughts and feelings.
Tomorrow I'll be seeing him again for Celebrate Samhain. Drac and Nimue will both be joining me which will be nice since they both have not seen Christopher since Nimue's baby blessing... quite some time! Looking forward to celebrating and perhaps attending the Kitchen Witch Workshop, though I am really interested in attending the workshop on Chanting: The Art of Sound. Another passion of mine, I'd love to see what new perspective I can gain from this! Love chanting, love it!
Tonight, however, my brother in law is still in town with his girlfriend and they're treating us to an evening out for Halloween Haunted happenings! We'll be bringing Nimue along, hoping not to frighten her too much, but there are other activities that she'll be able to enjoy and partake in, even if I have to sit out a few things and do it on my own afterward that is fine, I don't want her to be too scared, but I also would like her to see it's all in good fun and, ultimately, silly. Though I'm not sure how convincing I will be in explaining that when I am so easily frightened!