I was a part of a ritual recently in my craft and there were so many people who had the most beautiful and connected experience. I mean, they spoke of their experience after this ritual and I became at odds with myself because my experience was not even remotely similar.
I didn’t feel connected.
I felt like I was going through the motions.
Maybe it was because I felt rushed to get it together beforehand or maybe it was because I didn’t take enough time to connect to the energetic current of the correspondences that I was using? I contemplated this heavily as the afternoon turned into night and I just felt off. I tried to ground, center, and rebalance myself before bed and I couldn’t sleep. I felt nauseated. Not in control. Like something was coming up and out of my body and I couldn’t control it.
Ugly was coming for me.
I am in the middle of the mundane workday the next day after this ritual. I can’t focus and my mind is a cesspool of endless chatter about not feeling well or right. Something is not right. Is it because the ring I offered during the ritual is still buried in the salt on my altar and I haven’t buried it yet? Is it because I have lost my way? Where did my connection to the Universe go? Why can I not get grounded and focus? I am a witch. I am a powerful witch at that. I get up from my desk, light my working candle, and plop down on a pillow. I grab my headphones from the altar and put on a guided meditation. I feel sick because I can’t shake this feeling that I am obviously losing it. Before I can think about it any further, I have tears streaming out of my face and I am gasping for air. Ugly crying. I AM UGLY CRYING. ALONE. ON THE FLOOR! AT 2 PM ON A MONDAY! This continued for a bit. I did not try to stop it. I did not force it to stop. For a witch who mentors and teaches others, I wanted to understand the lesson in this because there is no way that this volatile experience of weeping, the purging of small oceans from my eyes, did not have a lesson associated.
Introspection, contemplation, and conscious awareness has taught me that the Universe does not speak in words. She speaks in symbols; she speaks in ways that require awareness or I cannot fully grasp the messages from the multitude of ways she is trying to communicate with me. For some reason I am having a hard time with my awareness after this ritual that has left me out of control and feeling like I am having a psychotic break. I am being weak with this flooding of the floor and massacre of tissues. What would my witch mentees think? If I cannot be strong and keep it together, how can I be wise for them? How can I help them grow if I am still lying on the floor? WAIT. Did I just tell myself I am being weak? Where did I learn that from? Where did I learn that having full on, raw, powerful emotions and crying is weakness? Where did I learn this? Who taught me that being tough and emotionless was the way to be? Am I going crazy right now? I look on my altar, the pile of salt covering this ring that I offered to Hekate. I pull the ring out of the salt, slip on the nearest flip flops I can find, and rush out into the backyard – I must give it to her now. I need it out of my house and out of my life.
Dig a deeper hole
It’s cold outside. In the northern hemisphere, everything is dying. It is a bit windy. I feel desperate to understand my own feelings and I know this ring has a lot to do with it somehow. I am digging. With my bare hands, in the cold, in my yard, in what was my tiny vegetable garden during this past spring and summer. My face did that thing again. The whole flooding thing. I stop digging and placed my hands on the ground next to the tiny hole I dug. Sitting here, in the cold, frozen toes and fingers, it dawns on me that I have been programmed since childhood that tears are weakness. Tears and emotions and attachments that bring on ugly crying, that is weakness. That is losing control. That is unacceptable. That is crazy. It is the voice of my mother. It is the voice of my ex-husband. It is the voice of people who left me to fend for myself after committing to forever with me by way of birth canal or a document. It is the voice of my shadow beckoning me to play by her rules so I can maintain some sense of control in my own life. What she means is that she is ready to protect me, to fight until the bitter end, to drive my life for me so I can be safe inside myself. She needs to sit down. Put the sword down. I am going to slay this one from a place of truth and healing. I put the ring in the hole and covered it with dirt.
One would think that I would be wise enough to come inside, wash my hands, maybe splash some water on my face. I did make my way back inside. I closed the door. Walked to my bedroom, grabbed my pillow, and screamed into it. When I was finished, I wiped my face with my dirty hands, took my pillow to the laundry room and put it in the washing machine. I went to wash my hands and was forced to look at myself in the mirror over the sink. Dirt streaks on my face. Hair a mess. Bloodshot eyes. Sniffling. For the first time in a very long time I saw myself in the mirror and didn’t avert my gaze. In all this ugliness, I am beautiful. The dirt, the tears, the screaming, the symbolic death rite of the thing that has held me hostage in my ways of moving in this life from a place of fear instead of a place of bliss and wonder. A place of now. I buried it and I refuse it. I refuse anything but healing from the things I have buried as I unearth them and face them. I refuse anything to enter my sacred space that doesn’t allow healing or growth. Refuse it.
Sit with it
I would like to offer a disclaimer here that I know healing has some ugly to it. From psychological theories to Witch to Revelation – it is a truth. Maybe no one told me in a way that I could truly understand because the experience of it is different from hearing the words ‘Healing is going to be ugly and it will make you uncomfortable in a world that makes you uncomfortable anyway’. Fear, anger, sadness, anxiety, joy, happiness, contentment, passion are all feelings and there is not a single feeling listed here that does not carry with it a lesson and a message. I must sit with them all in order to learn the lesson and hear the message because it comes from the Universe. As within, so without. This is not easy and keeps showing up for me because I still have more to learn. Healing is a continuous process of digging deeper and taking away more meaning. It has layers. It is magic. It is witchcraft. To sit with it and allow it to simply be. To accept it as a part of the journey. Being uncomfortable is going to allow you to move in life in your truth. Yours alone. I see you.
Revelations of a Witch. RAW. When I chose the logo for this site, it was quick. I liked the design. I like the way the characters were. It was only after I bought it that I realized the differences in the lettering were indicative of RAW. It is a layer. It is a message. I don’t believe in coincidences. I believe that Revelations of a Witch is meant to be raw truth, even in the ugly parts. It is meant to be the creative outlet for the things that I have buried to be unearthed from within my own inner temple. To be open to the raw lessons. To be vulnerable by sharing the experiences even if it helps only me. It is not weakness. The ocean from my eyes is a cleansing rite after the ritual I experienced and full submersion in the experience was raw and necessary. Be RAW. Be Real. Heal.
I contemplated this article after speaking with a dear friend. After speaking to her about it and advising that I was writing an article on this, my mentor advised that she was also writing an article on the aftermath of rituals. I was not actually alone in the things I felt after the ritual! If she was writing an article on it, she was either in the midst of this same experience or had been contacted by many of her students and I no longer felt alone. I felt empowered. I felt a raw, unadulterated need to deliver my own article into the world. We are all connected, and we are not alone. This is apparent in how Hekate, the Anima Mundi, has brought us together and created synchronicities in the way we moved today. I see and honor her. I see and honor my mentees. I see and honor myself. I see and honor you. I hold space for all of it.
A candle (to light your way) and a key (to unlock the door to your truth),
2 thoughts on “When Ugly Strikes”
My dearest Mentor, this was beautiful. One hour of ritual and so many are experiencing turmoil. What you have discovered about yourself and your honest, almost brutal, description of your spiritual growth – is powerful. As your Mentee I am grateful you shared this. Thank you for teaching us through your experiences.