Continuing the weekly arguments that 2016 was not all bad, I’ve created a series of posts designed to exonerate the year. This is the twenty-second installment in that series.
A year ago this week I started the day job I’m working now. I say day job because I still consider my primary occupation to be Writer, though I’m not paying the bills with it. When I left the last job for this one my supervisor advised me not to let my next employer squash my dreams. She meant Writing. She was always supportive of my writing and encouraged me to write whenever I had down time in the office. Of all the activities employees might use to fill their down time while on the clock, she considered writing to be a superior choice. She celebrated with me every time I got published.
With support like that, why would one leave for a different job? I wrote in my journal: When the student is ready, the teacher appears. When the Priestess is ready, the Temple appears. When the leader is ready, the opportunity appears. My heart felt ready. I was royally ready in 2016.
A year ago this week my self-portraits included the shadow of my Self. I didn’t know it at the time but I was laying the groundwork (pun intended) for one of the maxims I used to call Sassyisms. A year later (this week) I wrote on it on a new Instagram post:
The full-body shadow is the Earth asking to touch all of you.
I was down with the full body press in 2016. I was full-bodied in 2016.
A year ago this week I was asked to describe how I greet strangers. I confessed,
Let them see Her in Me
Emanate strength and compassion
Truth – Truth – Truth
Grace – Humor – Approachable
By Her I meant the Divine Her. The feminine aspect of the Divine. The living embodiment of the Divine. The modern-day instrument some would call an archetype. The She of She is We. Of She is Me. If we explore beyond the symbolism and romance of the language there is an invitation to execute a willful act of belief that this timeless feminine essence is present and available and active in all women. This is the essence that is activated when we hear directives such “show up more fully” or “called to be more present.” It’s the power in the Girl Power. When women cheer each other on, this essence surges. When women boo each other, this essence wanes, yet it survives through eons. A year ago this week I wanted this essence be my primary offering. In 2016, I was a beneficent benefactor.
The rest of this week a year ago was spent celebrating a stack of birthdays in which I gathered loved ones close around thermal springs, fed them pizza and Belgian ale, and let them poke around in a head shop disguised as a Halloween costume rental store. I’m told that we (the global We) no longer call them “head shops” and that people who use this term are showing their age. I’ve got echoes of Grace Slick calling out feed your head creeping through my aged noggin right now. (More of that timeless essence, folks; what a voice. Penetration was her superpower.) On the journey back home I cradled the howlite talisman I bought from Mom and Pop Head and educated my stepchildren on the provenance of head shops specific to my generation. I was a psychedelic preceptor in 2016.
I don’t deny that 2016 was at times a buzz kill. But it wasn’t all bad. My stepdaughter said the song gave her chills. I saw them on her arm, prickling the tattoo of an owl she bought when she came of age. There were moments like these in 2016. I’m glad I didn’t miss out on them.