The Rowdy Goddess

An Ecstatic Vision of the Goddess, dancing in harmony with the Universe.

Archive for the tag “aging”

Not for Sissies

Growing old I love this picture.  It’s from a photography book published in the eighties or people of the older generation.  I have this as a poster in my downstairs bathroom and the caption reads, Growing Old is Not for Sissies.”  It’s in the bathroom because the room is decorated with all kinds of mermaids.  She is one.  Old, fit, pensive, and dripping wet.  I love to swim.  She is a mermaid in all her aged mystery, energy, and power.

“Growing old is not for sissies is a quote from the inimitable actress Bette Davis.  If you are not familiar with her work, she played strong women with great flair.  I’ve learned as I grow older, that I have to explain my allusions and references.  When I was younger, I could assume that almost anyone would know who Bette Davis was.  Now, I’m not so sure.  It was a weird and lonely realization that I am talking to generations who do not share my past, my cultural references, or what I used to think was common knowledge.  No matter, I’m not afraid to explain.  One of the other realizations I’ve had is that I’ve become like those oldsters when I was a kid,  telling long, boring stories with no particular point.  I’m not afraid to bore you with them because I’m enjoying my own stories.  Apparently talking to me and being my friend or acquaintance is not for sissies, either.

There are a lot of things in life not for sissies.  We need courage to be our authentic selves and to engage in life.  Wicca is not for sissies.  You probably judge me as wrong because Wicca has an underserved reputation as all love and light, being dubbed “fluffy-bunny.”  To be sure, there are people determined, in the name of Wicca, to turn a blind eye to the dark and negative, people who are afraid to confront their own stuff.  However, there are many more who are bravely engaged in the magic of change.

Many people believe Wicca is unrealistic and fluffy because of the ethical statement, As it harm none, do what you will.  On the surface it may seem to be an unrealistic “law.”  It’s not possible to harm none.  I think of the Rede as a guideline or a standard, but more than that, it is a call to be responsible for our actions, decisions, and indecision.  The gods that call us to their service demand much of us.  We must be courageous to walk this path of “making your own religion” because we have no set of commandments to tell us what to do.  We endure the consequences of our bad decisions and reap the bounty of our good ones.  It’s all part of the flow of universal life energy.

Think about all the things you pursue that you don’t want to or you think it’s too hard.  Either you have to or you want to with a passion, so you put on your big girl/boy clothes and get on with it.  You have moved out of your comfort zone and into the realm of accomplishment, bravery, and wisdom.  You are in a sissie-free zone.

My favorite Bette Davis movie is All About Eve where she says, “Fasten your Seatbelt, it’s going to be a bumpy night!”  She’s a Rowdy Goddess for sure.


We’re For Dogs

I know that’s a tag line for a pet food company delivered in the meltingly fluid voice of David Duchovny. I couldn’t agree more, though. We’re for other things, too, but we are definitely there for dogs.

My black lab mix Congo had a rough few weeks and I really thought this 14+ year old dog of my heart was on her last journey. She wasn’t on her last legs because she couldn’t stand. She was confused and unable to function. We took her to the vet who said it was likely to be an infection pressing on the nerves in her brain. It took a week for her to come back. Now she’s back. She’s elderly so there are still things going on. But my lovey dovey girl is back. Thank heavens we don’t make that transition yet. Thank you Gods and spirits for answering our prayers and petitions.

I do believe that our dogs are part of our soul groups. One of the reasons I drifted away from Christianity was because I was told (and it was preached) that animals did not have souls and we would not be reunited with them in Heaven (or Hell, for that matter. Lucky them). How can a Creator reject such diversity of species, a wonder of creative spirit. Paganism embraces these beings as soul-full and sacred. Our pets return with us again and again, just as we return.

I’ve spent the last two days watching the Westminster Dog Show along with a special on the history of Westminster which aired on CNBC. I love the dog show. I remember a couple of years ago, I watched the whole six hours. The announcers were carefully scripted about terminology and very informative about all the breeds. The judge of the best in show (I believe it was the woman who is in this year’s picture) chose a female hound. At the very end, she was interviewed and the last word on the show was, “There was just something special about that bitch.” On behalf of rowdy bitches both human and canine, I concur.
This year’s show was fabulous. The breeds are all wonderful and the dogs are just so fabulous. For a lot of them, you can really see their personalities. This year was, again, very special. I really liked the Puli, which looks like a big jumping, trotting mop. I rooted for the Sussex Spaniel.
Stump was forced to retire in 2004 when he got sick and nearly died. He survived and has been thriving as a beloved pet. he came out of retirement at ten years old for one last show. There were shots of him setting up on his hind legs, wagging his tale, and looking like a wise one, the fool.
Throughout the show, they reminded us both on the show and in advertisements that there are many wonderful dogs, both purebred and mutt to be adopted. Adopt through qualified breeders, through shelters and through rescue. Donate money if you can because Dogs rule. They’ve got it goin’ on.
Wag Wag Wag

I’m Not a Crone, Please leave me alone!

I’m not a Crone…Please leave me alone!!!

As soon as I hit the 50 birthday mark, people kept asking me when I was going to have a croning. I wasn’t ready for it. My body wasn’t signaling the end of a cycle at that time, if you know what I mean, though things were obviously slowing down.
I’m not against being a Crone. There are some really cool old broads who are not only admirable but also inspire awe with their creativity, vision, and ability to speak their minds. It’s just in the narrow triple thinking of M-M-C, this seems to signal the end; part of the downward slope to the old folks home. I’m not done yet. I’ve got things to do and more to explore.
It’s been pointed out to me that Crone is the initiation point, the threshold over which we step onto a new path and a new way of thinking, living and being. I’m feeling better about it and I may do the Crone ritual thing at some point. As long as it signals and symbolizes stepping over the threshold into diverse roles, aspects, and explorations. If it’s “crone till I’m prone,” then forget about it.

The Jubilee Years
One of the ways I prefer to think about is that this “F” decade of the fifties is a jubilee. A celebration of magic, accomplishment and “more-riches-to-come.” The Jubilee is 50th year/anniversary celebration rooted in ancient traditions of Judaism–the Sabbath and the sabbatical. All rooted in the number seven.
The Jubilee year is at the end of the seventh of seven year cycles (7X7=49). Seven being the magical number of spiritual work and wisdom. The Sabbath, seventh day, was a day of reflection, retooling and quiet interaction with the Divine. The seventh year was a time of sabbatical, another time of refreshment and reaquaintance with our Divine partner. This is the root of the modern academic practice of sabbatical leaves; a time to move out of the hurly burly of everyday teaching and committees and to peacefully delve in to the refreshing stream of scholarship. In ancient times, the Jubilee was marked with great celebrations; debts were forgiven and slaves were freed. It was and is a time of fresh starts and celebration of accomplishments.

My friend StoneLightWeaver and I had a Dragon Jubilee party for our 50th birthday. We were born in the Year of the Water Dragon, a potent symbol for both of us. I’ve been called “The Dragon Lady” by the students I’ve supervised. But it’s really about the jewelry I wear–it’s all about the jewelry!!

The Geezer Dance
And then there’s the point of view of my partner, Mouse. In the four years that I’ve known him, he’s talked about being old, growing old and aging. At first, I responded with platitudes like ‘you’re only as old as you act,’ and ‘you’re not growing old, you’re getting better.” One time he looked me straight in the eye and said, “Gail, if you tell them you’re old, they carry stuff for you!” So I dropped that line of talk, it wasn’t doing any good.
Of course all of this is all in great good humor. Mouse has a theory of the cycles of Sacred Masculine. Mostly pagans use “youth-lover-sage” or some variation of that. Mouse’s cycle of the Sage is this: Geezer, Codger, and Drooler. We haven’t figured out where old coot fits in, but it does somewhere. “Don’t fear the Geezer.”
He loves to dance. And he does a wonderful Geezer dance. Because at this age, who cares what we look like, we just enjoy the dance.

Dance on and enjoy every step. Whirl and twirl in the ecstasy of the Rowdy Goddess and Her consort The Geezer!

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