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Life, Loss, Retreat, and Realizations

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything, and today’s post will be wonky, to say the least. It’s more of a cathartic release from my soul than anything else, and I apologize in advance if you aren’t into this kind of stuff. I have always made a point to be transparent with you guys, and you deserve to know why I’ve been MIA.

Life and Loss

Life itself has kept me in a whirlwind. On June 7th, 2019 at 2:10 pm my grandfather took his last breaths. We knew it was coming, kinda. He had a tumor that grew very fast, and were assured by the hospital that he was strong enough for the surgery. He made it out of surgery fine, but then took a turn for the worst. He was in the hospital from May 16th, until that afternoon when my family had the hospital turn off life support.

It hurts. there is no elegant poetry to describe this loss- only two simple words that come from people ages 1+. It hurts. No, it FUCKING KILLS. It’s like I have a huge, raw, sore in my chest and everytime the wind blows it’s like someone is pouring salt into the wound. My grampa was a major part of my life- he was like a second dad. When my mom had a mental break down and left my siblings and I behind, my grandparents took her place- as well as they could take the place of our mother anyways. Grampa helped me learn to drive- he was so patient! My dad and mom helped, too, of course, but Grampa wasn’t scared and meek like mom or loud and impatient like dad. He was just Grampa. When I think of him I think of the smell of fresh cut grass, motor oil, sweat, and soil. He loved tending to his yard. He and my gram lived in a little trailer for so long, and when they moved into their second home with 2 acres of lawn, he was outside just about all day every day from May to September, always tending to one thing or another.

Some of my favorite childhood memories are of the woods behind that house. My brother and I spent all our time out there- or in the gazebo my grandparents loved. My grandmother took care of some kids in our class back then, so we’d all go out to the woods and would find fallen trees to make bridges over these huge ditches that snaked their way around their property (their house was at the bottom of a steep hill, so my dad rented an excavator and dug deep ditches for irrigation so their lawn wouldn’t be flooded. Oh Grampa loved that lawn! The only times he ever got really mad at my brother and I as kids was when we trampled through his yard when he had just laid seed – we wanted our ball back we didn’t know any better lol. The second time I saw him get really mad was when someone put their car in reverse instead of drive (or vice versa) and drove into his garden, breaking the pretty wooden bed he built with his own hands. I remember him chucking the broken wood and my gram scuttling after him shouting to calm down. He had heart problems – so it wasnt’ good for him to be so worked up. He was such a mellow man, so I couldn’t help but stand at the door and just gawk lol.

Grampa was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease a few years ago, and it progressed quickly. A combination of years of alcoholism and genetics, most like. (He quite drinking like 40 years ago). It crushed him, being stuck at home all the time. He was so social – he loved people. He was a jokester- he always had gag gifts that he’d use to make people laugh. I like to think that he is in the Summer Lands, playing pranks on his brother and mother now. Or maybe he’s hanging around on this plane, waiting until he has the strength or energy to play gags on us. Who knows? What I do know is that life is truly capable of shocking the shit out of you, even us witches with our tarot cards and divination tricks. I’m a clairvoyant, and I thought for sure he’d pull through. I had a vision of him with an eye patch – the tumor was on his forehead and they had to remove his right eye. But now I know that it was hopeful imagination, not a vision. I think back, and I’m sure the signs were there. I just refused to see them, refused to hear them. It’s almost been a month since he’s been gone and I’m still in a fog. I still feel like this is some dream or cruel prank. Even with the little urn on my shelf- well it’s hidden now because I couldn’t handle looking at it. I cry everyday. The pain hasn’t dulled at all- if anythign it’s only gotten worse. I’ve just gotten better at distracting myself.

Retreat

I said goodbye to my Grampa on June 6th, and on June 7th I went to Orange, CT to go to Morrigan’s Call Retreat. It was a weekend long retreat devoted to the Morrigan. I worked cloesly with Anu, the Great Mother. It was fun. It was tough because I had to take my son, and I cried on like 15 shoulders – many of which I didn’t know until that moment. But I received messages from the Oracle, a priestess channeling hte Morrigan that were powerful and haunting. I lay in bed at night and think about how that little priestess had the presence of a 10-foot tall warrior. I walked into the temple, and the energy was palpable. At one point I dropped to my knees, in reverence and awe and shock over the Queens words. I saw the priestess the next day, and she was petite and bubbly and her voice was different even. Her eyes too – as the Oracle she had an intense gaze that was like arrows, but the next day her eyes were gentle and soft. The Morrigan is a powerful deity. She is often referred to as a warrior, but I see her as a Mother. She is vicious when she has to be, but her intense presense is just because she’s Divine. She said what I needed to hear, and I feel her presence every day. In the wind, in the sunlight, in the rain – even in my child, when I’m crying over my grandfather and he tells me “Don’t cry, mama, you have me!”. It’s like the Goddess is whispering in his ear to tell me that because no matter how many times he’s said it, it still makes me smile and the tears slow.

Realizations

I realized that I’m stronger than I thought. I realized that I need to appreciate what, and who, I have all the more. I realized that balance means extremes of life and death – like my cousin is now pregnant – how ironic is that? I realized that Deity and magick are for every day – not just moments of despair or delight. I realized that I had no fucking clue what happens after death, but i know what I saw shortly after my Grampa passed, and I hope that it’s like that. I realize this is a weird post, but I hope you find some sort of, idk, something from it. If not, enjoy the pictures from my trip at least.

Bright Blessings to you and yours,

Amanda

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1 thought on “Life, Loss, Retreat, and Realizations”

  1. I am so sorry for the loss of your grandfather, and am so happy I got to meet you at the retreat! You are an empowering, amazing person. -Hugs, Nichole

    Liked by 1 person

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