Thank Goddess Mabon is here and the space to pause, evaluate and begin to harvest is upon me.
This Mabon the theme of work is calling to me and while I feel work’s call I am taking the time to reflect upon all that I want to harvest as the wheel of the year turns.
The summer was so much more of a blessing and joy than I had ever imagined it could be. In fact, as the spring drew to a close I was panicked about the impending summer. One hormone addled night I begged my husband not to go back to work,
“I can’t do it, I can’t do it, I’ll go to work, you stay home!” I pleaded. I knew that I wouldn’t actually go back to work, because I had a then two month old and three year old at home, however I was in the midst of a three week intense postpartum depression/anxiety that I had no way of knowing would be lifted as quickly as it was. I had just walked through a traumatic birth and NICU stay and it looked as though this new baby that I had had a terribly rough and complicated pregnancy and traumatic birth with was becoming colicky. Of course it made sense that she would have colic, there so much stress surrounding her coming into the world, and while it made sense it didn’t make trying to cope with her intense unhappiness while I was in the pit of depression any easier . There was no way that I could conceive of getting up each day, not knowing when my husband would return (his hours are sporadic and long in the summer months) with a potentially sleepless night behind me to try to keep my poor three year old who had once been the centre of my world, happy, while I tended a miserable baby and coped with a soul crushing sense of dread and panic on the daily. When I would awaken with a panic at the prospect of the summer months ahead of me, the words “I just have to make it to September,” would go through my head, September marked Estrella’s six month birthday and I knew that from six months onwards babies became more and more fun, and September was the month of my beloved autumn season.
As I prepared the best I could for the inevitability of the months ahead I did what I do, I dove in to find support for my soul and my spirit while simultaneously making sure I wasn’t trying to force a change, years ago when I entered trauma healing therapy I found that surrendering to what is while walking towards truth and love worked much better than my iron hard will trying to force my inner state to shift.
I talked with my mentor and she prepared me Liam Neeson ‘Taken’ style, “Candise, this is not going to be fun, this will not be easy.” Okay, I breathed in and tried to suck it up. I remember calling people crying and saying “I just don’t have anything to look forward to.” I went to a homeopath and I made sure that I let my doctor know that I was pretty sure I had developed postpartum depression/anxiety. I am someone that works with both western and alternative medicine and I was not going to let something potentially dangerous go unwatched. Finally there were three things that I felt really shifted for me, they sound way too simple and I don’t think they are a recipe for change really, I believe it was just how Source was able to guide me where I needed to go. The first was an exercise that I did from the book Letting Go: The Pathway of Surrender, David Hawkins exercise was to help me get clear about what I wanted to intend and then I was to surrender it fully. He says to write it down and then let it go completely, to let go of even wanting it to happen, it reminded me of when I used to use a God Box. Here is what I intended and then let go of, letting go was very easy as my list seemed an impossible dream when I wrote it:
Estrella, Gracious and I sleep deep and peaceful and long.
Estrella gas is cleared (it lasted a year for Gracious so I felt doomed it would for Estrella too).
Estrella is calm, happy and easy.
I am full of energy and joy.
I can’t stress enough how impossible that list seemed, Estrella was never, ever happy, and I was drained, depressed and felt lower than I ever had. It was what I most wanted for the summer but I was sure it would never be. The second occurrence that sticks out to me, happened one day when I was in my prayer room, I gave my postpartum depression to the Holy Spirit, ****** I am going to qualify this before continuing on, reminding anyone who might read this that I had talked to my doctor at this point, I had a follow-up appointment made and I was willingly going to be monitored in the entirety of my postpartum, I in no way for myself or for anyone else advocate trying to take on something as serious as postpartum depression/anxiety with spiritual tools alone, there are many support areas, this is just what happened for me while I was already being supported.***** I didn’t feel happy or lighter after that meditation, but it has always stuck with me, I did feel something and I believe that the Holy Spirit entered as soon as I invited Her, the third occurrence, as cliched as it may sound is that I took a rock when I was on the shore of the Great Lakes, gave my postpartum depression to it, remembering what Carl Jung had said about the Ocean being deep enough to receive all our deepest wounds and unconscious and threw that rock into the Great Lake. Soon after we saw the homeopath again, I had the address to a postpartum support group ready to go, and then you wouldn’t believe what happened, Estrella went through a two week growth spurt where she did nothing but sleep all day and night. Alejandro had a lot of rain days and was called off of work so I caught up on my sleep and by the time the summer rolled around my colicky baby was the happiest baby I have ever seen and easy doesn’t come close to describing how peaceful caring for her is. We now refer to her as our little puppy dog, she is like a completely different baby as far as temperament is concerned.
Her gas cleared up and her and I started sleeping until 8 or 9 every morning, Gracious would come and join us in bed around our wake up time and we all had long, restful nights. As I began to get sleep and my baby became happy my postpartum lifted, I began to feel tapped in again and when my gut (no pun intended) began to nudge me in the direction of probiotics I contacted a friend and got into a gut healing regime that literally catapulted my energy and my happiness. By the end of June, the entire list of what I had hoped for had come to fruition.
The summer, the season that I like the least, was like a dream. The girls and I fell into this sweet rhythm, nature walk in the morning while the baby napped in the stroller and Gracious got exercise, long, long afternoon nap in the afternoon for Estrella while Gracious and I rested, tidied and played, followed by an evening nap that Alejandro often took the girls out for while I had some downtime, Women started asking me to do the Goddess Gatherings again, my writing abilities increased and more than anything, my spiritual life deepened and my joy quotient expanded further than it’s ever been.
I have always identified with the dark, the mystery, quiet, reflection, being able to integrate joy, peace and energy into the dark, quiet mystery that is my home has been such an amazingly surprising experience. What I am harvesting this Mabon is an awareness that the other half of me, the light, energized, active part of me feels good! I have avoided this side of myself for years because I had a proclivity for burn out, anxiety, over doing it and any extra light or energy easily tipped me over into a field of mania. I didn’t know how to channel the energy of being energized and I couldn’t reach joy because I buzzed past it into anxiety.
This past season though, I touched the peace in joy, the bliss in being energized and I was able to enter a new phase of life. That is what I am taking with me into the dark cycle of the year, peaceful joy, happy energy, and a playful zest for life that will support me as I willingly step into the mystery, into the quiet and stillness. Work is abounding for my husband right now, which is great for our pocket books as winter’s have been slow here the past few years, but tough on my Priestessing time, tonight is the first night in a week that I’ve had any continuous time to myself. I’m looking forward to more space to write, time to get out into our small community to attend singing bowls and yoga classes. There is a health show I will be entering to showcase my energy healing, there are Priestessy things on the horizon and I am happily awaiting them, until the time comes, when work is busy and I am at home for extra long hours with the girls, trying to decide on whether a shower or changing the sheets is of more importance because the hours of the day are almost done, I will continue to give thanks for the fact that I am in joy even during these long, domestic days.
At the centre, the balancing point of myself, that is where grace, love, joy and peace reside. When I am busy and life is frantic and when there is space and time, still in the middle lives my core essence, and the more I feed that essence, the more joy I can sustain throughout both the light and the dark phases of the wheel and of light the freer I am, because it is only when I am living from my core that I am living from the inside out, governed by Source rather than circumstance.
Mabon is an outer expression of this inner balancing point within each of us, what is Mabon holding steady at the core of your year for you? How were your summer months? What is on the autumnal horizon for you? How is your Mabon harvest going thus far? I’d love to hear from yo and until then, intend, surrender and allow and let’s watch together and see just how magical this Earth-walk can get.
Grace Be With You,
Priestess of Grace,
Candise Soaring Butterfly
The Autumn Equinox is a great day for me, it is a welcoming into the dark season, the season of mystery, spirits, introversion, dreaming, renewal and quiet.
The Autumn is my favourite season, the summer my least. By the end of summer I feel frazzled, burnt out, like I need to pull the shades on the sun and just sink into some crisp air and lay down on some falling leaves.
Energetically the Autumn Equinox, also referred to as Mabon, calls to me to pause and to reflect upon the bounty in my life, a practice that still does not come easily to me. The pause and reflection is my spiritual harvest, my time to weave a web of blessings and abundance actualized that will house and sustain me throughout the colder, more barren months.
While my least favourite season, the summer has it’s blessings that I appreciate. The light gets me out, it is a time that calls for me to be and to give my all, water calls to me in a visceral way and long nights offer me space to feel the openess and vastness of life. I am reminded of my Maiden self and called to step into my Mother as the summer progresses.
Practically we have been called to live a life where my husband is very active in his work during the summer months and not so much at all in the winter months, this has placed us in a position where we are actively living with the wheel of the year. As the frost begins to dissipate he prepares to be back to work, when the sun is beaming hot and long he works long and hot days, and as the Autumn season of magic and mystery begins to envelope us we prepare to welcome him back home for the winter months.
Equinoxes are days of balance, on Mabon we balance the light and the dark, we prepare to transition from the season of light into the season of darkness, Autumn will slowly blow us into the dark, getting darker and colder as it progresses. The dark and the cold have been biased against thanks to the patriarchy that has hailed all that is white, bright and masculine to be of superior elk.
Those of us that remember the Goddess, and many, many more of us do today than ever, remember the beauty of the unknown, we revel in the black stillness of the void and we embody the cool crusts of earth that cause life to freeze and be still.
Summer is an extreme as is Winter. The Equinoxes and the seasons that follow them, Autumn and Spring, are our transitions. Coming from fire into ice is a shock to the system, however, slowly cooling down and slowing down helps my spirit and my soul to settle into the depths of soul searching and spirit expansion that this next half of the year is bringing.
Typically my Autumn Equinox is exactly what most ceremonies call for, a time where I weigh out the balance of light and dark, lunar and solar aspects in my life. This year feels different, perhaps it’s the two eclipses that have just passed, perhaps it is being pregnant that has intensified everything, but, this year I feel as though the Universe did the balancing for me when I wasn’t aware, and it seems that instead a sifting is occurring.
I took a two week hiatus between eclipses from all of my writing, something I haven’t done in years. I still feel as though I am tentatively dipping a toe back in, because while my ego is screaming that I must create, a deeper part within me is calling me to be still and to fully receive what is in my life. My family and the role I play within it feels more sacred and important than ever.
As my daughter awoke to a magically transformed living room, Autumn gifts from Grandfather Autumn, toy and book rotation achieved I lit up at her joy. Later as we took our morning nature walk, this one all the more potent as it was the much anticipated first day of Autumn, I reflected on all that I wasn’t doing this Mabon, no ceremony, no video blog, barely time to write this, I felt momentarily as though my role as a Priestess was vanishing. When Gracious began to ask me about the changing leaves and what season came next and the words “and that’s the wheel of the year,” came out of my mouth a peace descended, this was where my teaching was meant to go this year.
I don’t know what the rest of the season will hold for me, what I do know is that the Goddess is bringing the fruit of my family to my cellar door, the love for my husband, the adoration towards my daughter, the anticipation for our new baby, these are all aspects that are sacred blessings that only I can tend to as a mother and a wife. I am the Goddess to my family and that role is as serious of one as any that I could ever undertake.
I wonder how the eclipses have been blessing or challenging you, is this Mabon different? Do you feel the energy at a heightened rate? What seeds are you cultivating? I would love to share in this magical evening of harvest with you if you feel called to comment.
Grace Be With You,
Priestess of Grace,
Candise Soaring Butterfly
The Autumn Equinox has always been a quiet time of reflection and introspection for me. It has brought about a calming and a settling down. Every year that I have honoured the Autumn Equinox this has been true….until this year.
Today has been such a wound up and to be honest, frustrating day. We have found our new home, it is exactly what we wanted, it is on the water, it is in the country and it is beautiful. The surprises of this place is that the water is down a steep cliff that I can’t walk to without my husband, that the place is furnished so we had to use an entire room to pack up the owner’s stuff that we won’t use, that the internet is ridiculously slow and expensive, that my phone doesn’t work out there, and that while we are out in the country there is relatively little for me and my two year old to do. Our house is on a highway and while there is a very empty park nearby and a playground at the next door apartment building, there isn’t much naturey places for us to walk and not many people come to visit. It is long days with just the two of us, my husband is up at 6 and generally not home until 7. This coupled with the upcoming winter months of heating and potential mice has made our country living an adjustment.
On top of these circumstances has been a sense of not being able to feel quite right in my gut. I have moments, I have hours when things feel great, when the beautiful, beautiful lake is enough, when the hummingbirds and the monarchs and my maiden and I being each other’s one and only is so quaintly sweet that I am at peace. Yet, there is an overriding sense of offness in my gut.
After spending an hour and a half on our back deck trying to figure out phone service and internet (mercury retrograde is so much fun isn’t it?) my Maiden was at her wits end and telling me that she didn’t like our new home. Heart breaking. I took her next door to play on the swings and breathed the water in, I paused, I prayed, I remembered that this day was about balance, I called my wise Grandmother who reminded me of the serenity prayer and I got back into today. There are a bunch of boring facts about the internet and the lady I am renting from that seemed insurmountable, (the internet is important to me as it is my means of sharing my writing which is a huge part of my Priestessing), there was the fact that it wasn’t looking like my family visits in the city were going to be as often as I imagined and that I was virtually stranded without a means of communicating with anyone, unless I stood in a very particular spot to use my phone and even that was tentative. It all felt out of my control. I paused, I repeated the serenity prayer, I repeated my favourite truth “God’s grace is my sufficiency” and I tried to be in the day.
Perhaps I was meant to let it all go. To let go of my writing, to really go off the grid and to be in solitary. That was one road I was preparing to take. As I settled into that idea, I remembered a reading that was done for me last night, one in which I was encouraged to connect to my guides and to ask them for help, I began talking to them today. I usually just go to Source or to the Holy Spirit, I decided to try to talk to my guides and I asked for them to find a solution for me. As I was remembering this my father called, I didn’t get the call because, well you know…..reception, but my husband did, my father had found a place in the city that was a ten minute walk from them, from the parks, from the green belt. I wasn’t even going to look but my husband suggested follow where we were led, so we packed into the car, drove into town and went to look. And it was beautiful, and it is in a four plex and the opposite of country living.
Now, I sit here, on the eve of the day that is all about balance and evaluation and I seek out what it is that I truly want. Is the beauty of nature, the solitude of the country and the slow days with my daughter what resonates? Is a cozy home, close to family and friends and places to visit in a small and sleepy town what resonates? Where will I best fit? I truly believe we can be happy anywhere, I truly believe that Goddess’ will can be played out in any and all circumstance. Do I believe that my Higher Power also knows what is the ultimate highest match for me? That’s the real question rising up right now. Can I let go and trust in an infinite power to guide me and to direct me?
I don’t like to move quickly, I don’t like having to make quick decisions, definitely not in the midst of a mercury retrograde, however, I do like to think that my Higher Power can guide me in a moment’s notice. The common denominator in this decision is that we are in a slower, quieter, smaller place with family nearer then where we had ever been had we not done our original big move from out West.
This post feels like a dump of stream of consciousness, I don’t know if it will move anyone, it was what I needed tonight, and the message that I am taking from this is that there is a movement that comes in life, a movement that comes slowly and a movement that comes quickly and that we don’t get to choose how fast the stream flows, we only get to choose whether or not we jump in and float, or whether we cling to the rocks and hope that it slows down. There are moments of floating and ease and there are moments of rushing. I need to know that the Power that I rely on is guiding that stream and that all that I need and all that makes me my most joyous is in that stream of life. For years I have struggled with prayer, meditation makes so much more sense and it is so easy to just be diffused in the light of Spirit, however, I am never at peace without a healthy prayer life and that is a big piece that is coming up for me right now. My prayer life is beginning to take root again like it used to be when I was a child, it is beginning to flourish and it is reminding me that in seeking and asking I am answered.
I am surprised to be coming face to face with my ego, with pride and with the ugly side of longing to be admired. I love the idea of being a country family off the grid, my daughter being wild and free. Moving into a small city, and into a four plex and just being a person in the city feels hard to my ego, beyond the fear of how I appear to others is a darker shadow that I am facing, a shadow from my early years, it is the shadow of feeling like a nobody, feeling invisible and as if my presence was inconsequential. Moving back into the city will be a major ego deflator for me. I am not surprised that lessons from my Maiden years are coming up, in my post on the Priestess page about today’s equinox I talk about the maiden phase of the moon that we are in and how she is asking us to tear down the social construct, and here I am trying to navigate what it is that I want and what I have been programmed to want.
Tonight, I sit with the shadow, I am feeling it, I am digging in, I am facing it and I am going to come out the other side of it with a firm grasp on what defines me, what defines my worth, and what truly matters to me. I wonder what shadow is coming to light for you this equinox? I wonder what is coming in to be balanced? What are you harvesting to come with you into the season of dark?
Grace Be With You
Priestess of Grace,
Candise Soaring Butterfly
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