Here in West Central Wisconsin the winter has been particularly long and extra cold. The Earth has slumbered beneath a blanket of snow and She has dreamed of burgeoning new growth of a Spring that at times seemed too far away. For those of us up here in the northern states, Spring doesn’t burst forth with a plethora of blossoms and greenery. That comes later in the season for us. Spring for us, means that the Mighty Mississippi begins to melt. The eagles come to feast upon fish that froze in the thick winter ice, and the ice fishing shacks are hauled away until next year when thick ice returns once more. The wild life begins rummaging about in search of tender greens that the melting snow has revealed, and the humans of the region are welcoming spring with a shedding of a few layers of clothing as we emerge from our homes to soak up some much needed fresh air and sunshine. Clearly the time of awakening and growth has come.
Thoughts of a garden pluck away in the back of my thoughts, as well as the anticipation of the chance to participate in the local community garden. My hunger to be in the woods, and connect with the spirits of this land through the trees as sap loosens and begins to flow through tree trunks once more, and shoots of green begin to creep up through the leaf litter to greet the growing sunshine. My hunger to learn of plant medicine, and edible wild foods plucks at my spirit as I look out to the bluffs, and towards the prairie.
In my world this season of growth and awakening has begun with a long overdue Initiation Ritual, and things have blossomed since. Already I feel a deepening connection to my spirituality. I find myself seeking to know more about the gods of my Viking ancestors and seeking out connections between the goddesses of the Norse traditions with the goddesses that I’ve always felt a connection with. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not attempting to skip and hop from pantheon to pantheon; but if there is a connection then there are ways in which I can build some deeper relationships with my ancestral connections while maintaining the connections I already have. I find myself looking for signs of what I should be doing next, and then as I’m riding with my sister to go see my mother two coyotes run across the highway in broad daylight. A sign to get moving. This is my time to “do the do,” and I hadn’t been. The next day, I smudged and did an impromptu house blessing, because I felt compelled to, and then an opportunity came…the sign I was looking for.
I’ve been chatting on and off with a Facebook friend who is a Master Herbalist and Naturopath. She offers a variety of educational opportunities through online correspondence and live courses, up to and including (insert my dreamy eyed longing here), a Master Herbalist Program that is the real deal. It’s my dream, but really at this point I’m excited at the thought of any herbalism education opportunities. I just can’t generally afford the formal programs. We had been talking about this conundrum, and had left it at…when the time was right, I would know and somehow find a way to make it happen. We none the less seem to have a connection that goes further than being Facebook friends.
A few hours after I did my smudging and blessing of the house, she sent me an Facebook message explaining that she was writing up a “want ad” in search of a couple of folks interested in working as intern assistants and thought that I might be interested in the opportunity as the exchange for the internship was credits towards course tuition. Well, you don’t have to smack me upside the head and tell me I’m a nettle lover to see where this is going. I submitted my letter of interest as soon as the want ads went public, and you are now looking at the Editorial/Personal Assistant at Green Wisdom! This to me is the most amazing opportunity to work with a wonderful wise woman, and be a part of something bigger than my own little circle of the world. It also gives me the opportunity to start pursuing a passion, that I can be truly proud of as a mother, as a woman, and as a pagan. I am ecstatic!!
Other opportunities have popped up as well. My beaded necklaces will be returning to the co-op where I used to work, and some new ideas for beading and jewelry have poked their heads through the stagnation of my own spiritual winter. This spring has growth in abundance, and blessings to be had if we are willing to reach for the sky as the eagles pick fish from the ice melt, and the rivers surge to life after this long season of slumber.