No is a complete sentence

The Power of Mabon

Leaves There’s something about fall and the autumnal equinox in particular. Although most shudder to think about the season after, autumn provides reprieve from the summer’s heat, and the bounty of the harvest. It’s the first inkling to prepare, to stock up for winter, to pull out the long sleeved coats and reluctantly put away the sandals. Some start realizing what’s ahead when the shadows start to lengthen in August. Others wait until the first frost to scramble to get the furnace filled and find the cold weather gear.

I’m right in between. The modern conveniences of our time have let us wait until the harvest is nearly passed before rushing to prepare for the first snow. Most people need the leaves in full color and the complaints about darkening evenings in order to realize that yes, summer is on its way out, and winter lingers over the horizon.

Autumn is about transition, and being ever fluid to the changing forces of nature. While fall is consistent in its ability to change, being ever in tune to the shift in the earth, it is often unpredictable, with cold temperatures one day and summer heat the next. No sense taking the changes for granted. They will happen regardless.

It’s this alteration of nature that I align with. I myself am hot one day and cold the next, happy for fall’s arrival and dreading winter’s chill.

The dark is one of the most challenging aspects to deal with. It’s a silence like none other when the force of the night rests heavily on the day’s shoulders. When windows are closed and the leaves are off the trees, we’re protected by the house walls and the furnace heat, but the sounds are muffled by the windows. We’re exposed more to our neighbors with the leaves off the trees, and yet at the same time the wildlife is revealed more fully. It’s like nature is asking us to strip ourselves bare and protect us at the same time. It’s a lot to ask of creatures that are fragile in so many ways; physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Our underbelly gets revealed in the transition to winter, pulled away from comfort and relying on nature more than ever for survival. Without her resources, the trees and streams for shelter, without the food we’ve gathered in the cold cellar, we won’t be able to sustain the life throughout the cold season. And that’s the lesson she asks us to learn every year. She wants us to realize that in order to survive, we have to go to our roots and find the strength that lies deep within. We won’t get through the snow and the dark without it.

So this year as the equinox transitions from one season to the next, keep that in mind even as we have to rely less on nature for survival, we still need to learn those lessons and hold on tight to each other. We need to rejoice in the harvest and know that by hunkering down and bundling up, we will make it through to Gaia’s gift of the spring.

Blessed Be.

No is a complete sentence

The Body Doesn’t Lie

I fell off a horse two weeks ago. I’m fine, didn’t break anything, but landed hard and also had a concussion. Yesterday I went to see my acupuncturist for help. While I’m feeling good, I can tell things are still not quite right. I want my body to be normal again.

What I learned is that the body cannot lie. In every spot she worked on that was related to the fall, there would be a twitch, or pain, or stiffness. The responses were involuntary – I’m not one to make a big deal out of anything if I can avoid it.

There’s an amount of emotional trauma lingering too. Yes, I ride horses and know the risks that inherently come from riding them. This knowledge still can’t replace the fact that I have no memory of the fall and that is what bothers me most of all. And then I’m going through all the possibilities what could I have done to prevent the fall, and why didn’t I sit back more securely or do and emergency dismount, or have worked with the horse to the point where we could have done a one rein stop successfully. There wasn’t time, and I realize that. It was a situation that was unfortunately stacked up for failure from the beginning. Could I have made some better choices? Yes. I’m not afraid to get back on. I’m afraid that I’ll make wrong decisions again. I will be practicing every technique available to avoid such a fall again.

I’m relaying this story as it occurred to me this morning after my treatment that our bodies hold everything we do to them. Our emotions are held into the muscles and bones. We carry our pain in our bodies. It doesn’t go away easily; it takes a lot of patience and working through issues in order for our body to let go. It’s our protection, our body holds our memories. It can be a safe haven or a constant reminder of trauma. The choice is ours.

We deny these feelings, deny the tension that lives in ourselves. Ignore the aches and pains and fatigue that lingers. It’s normal, right? No. We have forgotten how to listen. Do you let go of all the hurt that has been holding you back for so long? It lives in your muscles, a constant reminder of what didn’t go right. Or perhaps we just can’t get past the wrongs that were done to us by others.

The body doesn’t lie. It doesn’t know how. Our bodies are an accurate representation, a map if you will, of our lives and what has gone before. It is our choice whether we are going to listen and do anything about it.

No is a complete sentence

Season Change

Who could help but welcome autumn and the promise of the winter snow?
Still there’s something sweet and wistful as I watch this lovely summer go
But the sun is sinking sooner and the weeds have won at last
With the berries on the bushes and the crickets in the grass
Oh summer’s almost over and I’m crying but I don’t know why
~Cheryl Wheeler

I love fall. Everything, from the cooler nights to the changing leaves to apple picking and seeking out the perfect pumpkin for the doorstep. To be honest, I started searching for signs of fall back in mid August with the browning of summer grasses and the angles of light changing on the horizon.

Autumn teaches us so many things.

  • We have to let go of one season to enjoy the other
  • We have to prepare for the winter journey ahead
  • We have to look inward to find the answers we seek
  • We have to hold the light inside to carry us though

May the fall bring you peace.