It’s a busy time of the year, with the promise that it’s only going to get busier, sometimes to the point that I have a growing frustration because I feel like a part of my spirituality gets put on the back burner. I’ve grown to be a practitioner of active meditation, mostly because it’s the most convenient, but I have to admit- I love inactive meditation, or focused meditations like writing, art, dancing...things that I’m not exactly having a lot of time for.
Busy mom is busy though- homeschool takes a lot of focus and dedication (and a whole lot of self discipline- let’s admit it- there are just some days I want to say “to heck with it” and give my daughter the day off! Sometimes I even do, though not often!) And a whole lot of planning. And busy student is busy as well. While I am now done with one program, (YAY!) I’m still in another program that’s very time consuming. Throw on top of that normal life stuff like cleaning, being a mom, preparing for Samhain and Halloween. I celebrate both- one is my spiritual practice, one is a secular day. All on top of building Liminal Raven Ministries.
Not that I would trade any of it. There are challenges, but after years of feeling rather worthless, bored and struggling to find meaning in my life, I welcome the busy-ness. However, the hardest part is that feeling of disconnect I get. It can become a struggle that can have simple solutions- sort of.
The first thing I try to do is stick with my daily devotionals. This is an easy way to feel as though I’m still connected, even just be a little. My own devotionals are something I keep in order to express gratitude, love and keep myself open. I start with filling a glass with water. I light a candle, and then speak some ritual words that I don’t vary from. A short, simply prayer that means a lot to mean, but isn’t hard to remember. Since I have two altars, one for the ancestors and one for The Morrigan, I do this twice (though different words) and then I make coffee. I always give a cup to The Morrigan, and then I sit and contemplate and have a conversation with her.
Here, it’s important to avoid complacency though. Just saying the words without intention or emotion is a disconnect. I do that sometimes, and it can take some effort to add intention if I’m burned out or distracted. I have to remind myself to stop, and take my time, pause for a moment and truly speak with intention. Sometimes I can sit down with my coffee, and skip the part where I converse with The Morrigan, and instead, jump right into working, or starting homeschool with my daughter. Sometimes this is unavoidable, but mostly, it’s just forgetfulness or laziness. It’s not going to put me behind to take 5 minutes to sit and converse, but it’s easy to forget that when stressed about life.
The other thing I try to do when I’m ungrounded is to make an effort to ground during my fires. Now, this has become really hard lately- it’s getting cold, and I’ve been having some issues that have prevented me from having as many fires as usual. So I do know I need an alternative- a hard thing to find when my fire rituals are a very specific magical skill set. I am unlucky in that I don’t have a fireplace any longer, and no matter how hard I try, the gas stove my house has for warmth is not the same.
This is when I need to remember my other tools. These are writing, painting, drawing and other forms of art, dancing and movement, singing, and even working out. I can even crochet or knit and turn that into a form of grounding meditation. I talked about this in another post, about how we sometimes struggle to relax, about the guilt we feel about self care and “frivolous” activities, so again, this is why this can be hard. I feel disconnected, and painting would help, but painting is a guilty pleasure, therefore I shouldn’t, and instead I can continue to feel disconnected...feels like an endless cycle that I am betting a lot of people can relate to.
The final other little thing I can do is talk to others when I’m disconnected, because it can connect me! Now, I’m what’s known as an introverted extrovert, or ambivert. I lean mostly introvert, but if I am comfortable with you, I almost guarantee you know it. If I’m not completely comfortable, but I like you, you’ll get glimpses of extroverted me. It’s like my secret identity. ;)
However, things like time, distance, availability, and social anxieties can get the best of me so that sometimes I just can’t reach out. The people I consider to be part of my pagan community are very far from me, and even with 8 sabbats and other events, I can usually only get to one or two of them a year. It can be lonely at times. But I also have a small, intimate group of friends that I know I can message anytime and talk to. And talking inspires, talking reconnects- one of my favorite things is listening and realizing that everyone is human, with human problems (aka so my problems aren’t anything special, they are normal problems!) and seeing the Divine in each of us. Our strengths, weaknesses and our lives reflect how the divine comes to us. There’s just something about seeing and feeling this that I love.
It’s why I created Liminal Raven Ministries. Because when I can also share what I see and feel of the gods, and of the spirits, and help others see it for themselves, it is worth so much in the end. One of my most recent discoveries is how much I enjoy the small pagan community around me on Instagram. Seeing the responses of #31DaysMorrigan has been so insightful, inspiring, and connecting. Sure, I’m very much aware that social media has a lot of downsides, and that not everything we see on social media is honest. Discernment, not just of our spiritual practices, but our social community as well is important. But without direct conversation, seeing others participate and share has been uplifting. So even when my social anxiety is high, I don’t feel as lonely as I did. I’m not alone, there are some awesome, badass witches, pagans, heathens and miscellaneous spiritual folks out there.
In fact, I’m sad it’s ending, but luckily it’s not completely ending. Sam (Bo) Thompson, who was also a contributor to Warrior Queen: Answering the Call of The Morrigan over Ravens Keep Forge (and also on Instagram) recently reached out to me to let me know they created a Beyond Samhain devotional. Another 30 days to The Morrigan, and this one is based on lore. It feels incredibly intense, yet perfect for the beginner on their path, and the “advanced”, who might need a reconnection. I encourage anyone working with The Morrigan to jump in! And honestly, how awesome is it that we have members of the community promoting, teaching and creating their own devotional activities to share!
Being disconnected, being busy and struggling and lacking time are legitimate things that can happen. It sucks, it’s hard, but know that it’s normal. It can from daily stress, overwork, burnout- like the Wheel of Fortune tarot card and the wheel of the year, everything comes in seasons. Sometimes it’s up, sometimes it’s down, but remember: this too shall pass. There are little things we can do to stay connected, and yeah, sometimes we have to work hard for just that little touch of grounding. The effort is worth it though. Spiritual practice is not, after all, passive. We have to work towards it. And disconnect is another opportunity for growth- would we change and grow if we are never challenged?
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