You’re probably wondering why I felt the need to write about a child’s toy. Seeing as I’m surrounded by them constantly, maybe the title leads you to think I am … Continue reading Hobby Horses
Before we start, I want to be honest. While kicking around the idea for this post in my head, the working title was “Keep Your Tribe, I Have My Witches”. It was a response to how the word “tribe” is used in popular culture.The more I thought about it the more uncomfortable I was with using that word. I don’t want to offend or insult anyone and I know the usage of that word does both. I don’t want to add to the appropriation.The word “village”, especially in connection with witchcraft lore, works just as well.
Aristotle said, “Man is by nature a social animal”. Our need for comradery and connectedness is genetic. We, as animals, need each other. But sometimes it’s not that easy. Connecting with others, especially the “wrong” type of others, hurts us more than it helps. Finding the right crowd, the right circle to surround yourself with is so very important. And one of the hardest things you will ever do.
While I pride myself on being a nice person, I am not gregarious by nature. Not only am I a homebody, I’m an introvert who struggles with social anxiety. Honestly, maybe I am a homebody because of those things. Either way, I am not a social creature.
I also am not a collector of people. I know people who pride themselves on collecting friendships, like dead butterflies pinned in shadow boxes. I am not like that. I don’t need a huge chorus of yes wo/men. I feel like this does two things. It either feeds into a cult of personality or it devalues the quality of the friendships. I don’t want a group of fans following me around, regurgitating everything I say. I’m not Jim Jones. I don’t need a fellowship.
What I have, and what I’m exceptionally grateful for, is this small little circle of people who love and cherish me the same way I love and cherish them. What this group lacks in numbers, they make up for in true honest emotion.
From a young age, I was taught by my mother that love comes with strings. Every relationship was a maze through spiderwebs of obligations. It wasn’t until I was in my twenties that I learned that friendship doesn’t come with prerequisites. You just love each other. You support each other. You want the best for each other. It is not a tit for tat set up. No one keeps score. You both strive to be the best you can be and help the other person when they can’t be.
I’m lucky enough to surround myself with magical ladies who inspire me constantly. These women are my support network, my therapist, my comedians, my teachers. They surround me with love and set my creativity on fire. It’s because of them I’ve dived into researching and truly living my Craft. From books to articles to tarot cards in the mail, they have helped me find my true self.
It’s also because of them and their belief in me, I’m writing again. Their support and never-ending cheerleading is a huge part of why this blog and my recent accomplishments have happened. With them at my side, I’ve been able to trust in my abilities and pursue something I’ve enjoyed since I was young.
So while you may have a village, I have my coven. And for me, a tight group of inspiring and motivated friends is all I need.
The internet is a weird thing.
At it’s core, its a bunch of zeros and ones, arranged together in sequence, making something out of nothing. I can’t really explain how it all works. It’s all way beyond my realm of understanding. What I do know about the internet though, is that it can bring people together.
Let’s start at the beginning.
Half a million years ago, you know when Myspace was popular, I was a brand new adult discovering the world of body acceptance. I had always been the “ugly fat” girl. My mother started me on the path and the kids at school picked it up and ran. I never had good feelings about my body or my looks. So after marrying my husband and having my first child, I realized, maybe that’s not who I was. Maybe , you know, I actually might be pretty. Somehow, I stumbled upon the world of online modeling. There was a site that was for plus size pin ups. I knew as soon as I saw the website and the ladies featured I wanted to be part of it. Luckily enough, after applying, I was accepted. And it was so much fun. It help bolstered my self love and helped me unveil my sexuality. More importantly, it gave me a wonderful group of lady friends. The type of friends I never really knew existed.
Friendships never were my strong point. When you’re raised by a paranoid narcissistic, you learn that the basic set up of the world is “Us vs THEM”. If you weren’t genetically related to us (and sometimes if you were), if you disagreed with us (and sometimes if you didn’t), if you did better than us (or if you did worse) you were in the THEM camp. This fucked up mentality stuck with me until I clicked with these wonder women online. We were all different, but we were all the same too. We disagreed on somethings, and agreed on others. We walked different paths with different steps, but were still able to hold hands. The feelings of love and support was new and amazing and, I’m not shitting you here, changed my life.
As it does, time moved on. We all did our own thing and Myspace died at the murderous hands of Facebook. Our group of friends faced real life challenges and adventures. Marriages, divorces, births, deaths, relocations, and stagnations. We drifted then found each other. We lived our lives. We shared our stories. We loved each other.
Recently, one of my close lady friends from that group passed away. We were never able to met in person and, as the good ole Southern phrase goes, hug each others neck. But we were close. She watched my babies become kids, I watched her kids become men. We laughed, we cried, we lived. We exchanged letters and stories, gifts for the kids. We swapped clothes. We were sisters. And it was and will forever be on the of most important relationships of my life.
So here’s to my favorite pirate mama. Way the wind always blow you to where you need to go. We’re going to meet again and when we do, I’m going to hug you for a good long while. Thank you for showing me and my scallawags a love we didnt know existed. You helped teach me that a true family is the one you make for yourself. You were a beautiful radiant star that blessed us all. You helped make me a better person. I will always hold you in my heart and take you with me on my travels.
Rest easy, beautiful. You are so loved.