Make no mistake: working between the worlds takes a lot out of you.
After liminal ritual work, taking the proper self-care steps is vital.
What are “the proper self-care steps”? Well, that depends on you.
I live with depression, ADHD, and various addictive and disordered tendencies (by that I mean things like disordered eating, disordered sleep, serial obsession, and hyper focus). I’m comfortable with solitude, and require it regularly to recharge my batteries. I live alone, in a relatively isolated community where I don’t have a solid support network close by. I have lazybones Mars in slothful Taurus.
My post-ritual self-care needs to take all of those things into account.
For me, if self-care is not properly administered after ritual work, depression can set in.
Monday the 22nd of February saw a luminous Virgo Full Moon and the midway point of my three-day Devoted to Sovereignty Moon Lights ritual.
That’s three full days of raising energy, holding space, and living in the liminal.
This work is vital and draining. It consumes me insidiously, taking much more energy than I appear to be expending.
After three days, the lights were all burned out on the altar… and in me.
And you guys – I goofed.
I tried to go back to work too soon.
Overcompensating for the luxuriant Mars in Taurus tendencies, I gave myself a good old Saturnine kick in the pants. “Back to work, swine!” I might as well have barked at myself as I reeled into the office.
It didn’t work.
What do you do when you’ve goofed? What do you do when you’ve backslid out of balance?
Here are some things I do:
- Drink plenty of water! And eat grounding, nourishing food as best I can.
- Feel the feelings. Acknowledge what is happening, and face it. As Louis CK says, “let the sadness hit you like a truck.”
- Journal the fuck out of it. This helps me, a lunar Gemini, to both open the floodgate of feelings and to process the resulting deluge. In classic ADHD Gemini fashion, I do this in my Bullet Journal, DIVINA journal, and sketchbook, on my watercolor pad and big cork board, and in my dream journal (lots of insights to be found there, my dreaming darlings). There’s no wrong way to journal the fuck out of your feelings.
- Embrace solitude. I will confess — this one is the easiest one for me. I require solitude to recharge and enjoy my own company immensely. But often I see others putting off solitude by turning to their phones, surrounding themselves with people, binge watching Netflix, and/or getting really fucked up. The truth is that sometimes we need to be alone with our thoughts and feelings. This is where the commitment to healing happens. This is where communion with our spirit occurs. This is where it all begins.
- Cultivate gratitude. An attitude of gratitude brings in the rush of good feelings to fill the void left by the sad feelings that have, thank you Louis for the turn of phrase, hit me like a truck. Gratitude prevents me from curling into the fetal position, thus closing the sadness into myself and prolonging the experience. Gratitude opens me up, lifts my chin and my spirits, reminds me to smile and breathe.
- Take a bath. Or a shower, or a swim, or a dip. Water is the great cleanser, and if I’m having trouble getting in touch with or releasing the feelings, water can usually help. Plus, bath magic is so easy and fun! Especially if you, like me, still have your childhood rubber ducky. Squeak squeak!
- Return to the practice. There are a number of sacred practices in which I regularly engage. They include meditation, divination, active imagination, cultivating calmness, communing with my spirit guides, physically exercising, and reclaiming self, power, and position.
- Commit to healing. Healing is a lifelong process, and there is always some old wound or other being cracked open. Pain oozes or stabs out, and while an initial reaction may be to run and hide or push it back down in a panic – ouch! this does not feel good! mayday! mayday! – it’s far better in the long run to face and embrace the opportunity to reveal, heal, and transform the source of pain, whatever it may be.
Commitment to healing is the big one for me right now.
For clarity, medicine, and sacred support on this never-ending healing journey, I’m turning to the cards and a new Heart Hurt Healing tea blend I’ve whipped up.
Are you also in this kind of a broken-open ouchy-feels where’s-my-Bandaid place?
Let’s be perpetually healing people together!
DANCE A CHICKEN SOUPY DANCE
Sending you an infinite wave of good vibes, wherever you are.