Forward

“You know you are on the right track when you become uninterested in looking back.”

This quote came past on Tumblr recently, and I looked at my life and I looked at my choices and I realized that while I haven’t -not- been looking back at my past, the way I’ve been looking back has been mostly a looking back of acknowledgement, not the regretful “if only I’d done other things” kind of looking back or “wow I really miss [whatever].”

Where I am now, where I have been for most of the last year – this is not where I expected to be, ever, in . . . any way.

It’s hard to put into words how drastic the changes have been, to even comprehend it myself sometimes, though from the outside I am sure it’s obvious enough: massive religious/spiritual crisis/change of worldview, cross-country move on fairly short notice, left a physical social network I’d been part of for a decade or longer, left a long-term relationship – and that’s just what I’ve been relatively open about to non-pagans.

After some hints it would happen at some point, my career goals also got redirected hard this spring – yes, I am working in an architecture firm, oh the irony, but it became abundantly clear that pursuit of that career path needed to be ended, and left on the road like a rotting corpse. Gruesome imagery, I know, but that’s kind of what it felt like. (Ever since I started down the architecture path, now 14+ years ago, I had a feeling it was not quite right, but it was the closest thing I had, so I went with it. The new plan has me heading in a direction towards landscape restoration, and I can’t say that something more plant- and land-oriented came completely out of the blue – I’ve felt a tug towards that for many years.)

Everything major I thought was true about my life when the cracks started appearing about 2 years ago, when I started making some moves to GET some of the major change I needed, has changed. Even after my worldview got overhauled and I had to deal with “this sounds crazy but I know I’m still sane,” the changes were bigger than I was looking for or went places I couldn’t have even imagined. Despite how attached I was to all of what was true then, what I wanted to be true – I wouldn’t go back. The gulf is too big, and there’s no compelling reason to even try.

Some of what I am dealing with now is incredibly frustrating, infuriating, and confusing, but. Well. It’s all part of the package, part of the new normal, and I am so very grateful I have found people who understand that aspect of my life.

After so many years of looking at decisions I had made, in terms of college, and career choices, and relationship choices, and kicking myself hard over some of them (especially my college and first relationship and subsequent fallout), because I always felt that where I was wasn’t right, and it was obviously my poor life choices, it’s a little strange to be in a place where I’m really not interested in looking back any more.

I wrote the above last month sometime, sharing it elsewhere, but it turned out to be a really good lead-up to the actual end of the year look ahead to this next year.

I did a little divination on our anniversary to ask Loki what His plans were for me for the year ahead, and then ended up doing some more general readings myself on the 1st.

One of the most um, amusing things came from a very general “what does each quarter have in store” reading. The third quarter had a pretty strong “Yay! Great success! Badassery! All the good things!” feel to it, and then I looked at the fourth quarter, and I looked back at the third quarter and thought, “Third quarter looks like ‘you get to level up,'” and I am familiar enough with gaming to know what leveling up means. Ha. Ha ha.

The fourth quarter does, in fact, look like “and then you get BIGGER CHALLENGES! To meet with enthusiasm and aplomb!”

The first 6 months look like, well, challenges and things to be met and dealt with. So, um, business as usual. (It was all very non-specific, it really did read pretty much the way I am writing it here.)

I also did a spread based on the 12 astrological houses, to see what might be coming there. Mostly it looks good. There are some cards that have me really curious about what they really are meaning, and some I couldn’t make much sense of, period, which was kind of disturbing.

I’d been debating whether to do much “year ahead” divination, because I already have a pretty good sense of what things I need to work on – one of the things that Loki told me is related to getting my financial situation better taken care of, which is unsurprising – in the last 2 years, I have had about 6-7 months of paid work (I have a steady job now, and that looks unlikely to change), so I have a fair amount of debt to deal with.

I also have some things to focus on regarding my long-term career trajectory, because I am pretty much starting from scratch here, so I’m signed up for some inexpensive online courses related to basic gardening-related knowledge. I’m also looking into getting into more hands-on volunteer work related to this whole landscape restoration thing.

I’ve also been given some indications about some specific esoteric skills to work on, which I am really looking forward to, and finally without my previous hangups.

I did two tarot spreads using the 5-card spread in this post. I only intended to do one, but I got a nudge to do a second, using a different deck. The first one spoke about self-actualization as the possibility for abundance; the second about that one esoteric skill. I feel like the former may be a mix of both internal work as well as my eventual career work, since they are so closely tied, at least for me.

The amusing similarity between them is that they both indicated that what I need to get over is my belief that I can’t do these things.

Which I know HAS been in my way of making progress, on either topic. I keep avoiding trying deeper magical things, deeper trancework, etc., in part because I am scared it will work, and it will flip my shit out in a major way, and in part because I think sure, other people can do this, but not me.

Last weekend, I went to visit my parents at the place I grew up. I went out to talk to the land spirit, which is something I’ve done every visit since realizing spirits are Real. He’d communicated with me – out of the blue – at home a few weeks previously, asking when I’d be home again, and at that time I had no travel planned. Well, funny, plans change . . . in advance of my trip, I even got a notion about what to offer him, and what in part to ask him about.

So anyway, I went out, and poured him some tea (into a hollow in the ground), and sat down to see what was up, and he brought up the restoration work. And some of this psychic work. Yes, I’m getting it from all directions, I guess I should take it seriously, huh. I had also started to feel bothered by not knowing just how large his area of purview -was-, because I suspected it wasn’t limited to the bounds of my parents’ property – why would it be, the land doesn’t end at the fences? So he said some things about that.

After finding the thing he directed me to, I went back in and fairly soon got around to doing some divination on the conversation, because I was feeling cranky about it. I was kind of expecting those answers, in a way, I’ve heard them, or thought them myself, there was the previous notions about some of the topics – so I couldn’t possibly have heard the spirit correctly.

Well.

The runes (and cards) indicated otherwise.

The part about the restoration work, about it being important for me to do this, was really, really, really clear. I got really strong energetic feedback as I interpreted one of the runes in particular, and then I sat there feeling . . . a bit trapped, or doomed, or “oh gods this is all really real oh shit I need to do this” and had half a notion to hide under the table, and well then I decided that having a pissed off spirit starting to growl at you and be really. clear. this. is. im. port. ant. child. was perhaps a sign to stop being so dramatic and deal with it.

Also, yeah, okay, really not a “local” land spirit, much larger area of interest/oversight, and I am not sure “land spirit” is quite the right file any more, either.

Much later in the day, still having “want to hide; what is my life” feelings, I put my pajamas on and curled up in bed and shook for a little while – I’ve been getting this direction about my career for well over a year, from Loki, from Odin, from Loki Loki Loki, lots of hints and pointers and stuff, encouragement when I do things, things just conveniently coming up that are Relevant, but it’s been something I keep kinda sliding gently away from. Getting it again, so clearly, in another context (and also, very clearly, that this is to somehow work in tandem with whatever spirit work I am supposed to be getting into) really hit some mild panic button, and after I stopped shaking, I finally took a look at that.

I realized that it’s been the same basic fear that was behind a lot of my relationship/commitment fears: it didn’t work out in the past, why should I believe it can work this time? How can it possibly work? Look at my track record!

Yeah, well, this time I have a god pointing me here. Supporting me. (More than one, in fact.) And it’s a stupid fear anyway. I want to do this, it feels right, I am enthusiastic about it, I feel very very strongly in the rightness and necessity of this kind of work, and if the architecture thing didn’t work out, well, I always felt it wasn’t right anyway. And look at how things keep working out in the landscape direction whenever I make moves there!

Simply recognizing what the underlying fear was behind moving ahead seems to have knocked it down to the point I don’t feel avoidant about starting to do more work here.

So seeing that come up, again, in the tarot reading (the 10 of Swords – talking oneself into believing in failure – came up), and in the other one, related to my fears that I “can’t” do this specific esoteric thing, really drove the point home.

So I have some big things to work on this year. Some big, awesome possibilities coming up.

The morning of our anniversary, a chunk of cards fell out of my deck when I went to pull a single card, and the runes gave me 3 runes, not 1; between the two of them, I got some kind of answer about why Loki had pushed the marriage thing so strong and so fast the previous year – it was about pushing me through some major fears and breaking some boundaries down, so that I could go on to bigger things. “Seize the keys to my power,” something like that. I got weepy over it. It’s one of the kindest things anyone has ever done for me.

And jokes about the downsides of leveling up aside (bigger monsters!), I’m really looking forward to seeing where this all goes. It feels like it’s about damn time for some major progress.

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About Fjothr Lokakvan

More or less Northern Tradition polytheist.
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