Like I mentioned previously, I stayed in the room that was serving as a shrine to Skadi for the weekend.
I suspected I might meet Her, at least briefly, because shrine room, with open hours for worship, Norse goddess, me with a lot of Norse activity in my life – it seemed like a thing that was likely. Plus there was the way that when I asked on the event’s FB page if there was someone looking to share a room, the first person to reply was the shrine keeper (we’d previously “met” a bit via reading each other’s blogs, but still). When things work out really conveniently, I start getting suspicious about whether Someone’s hands are helping work things out.
Partway through Friday of the conference, I went to the room to lie down and rest briefly – I’d woken up far too early in the day and was exhausted. The room felt pretty nice (it was a really nice space to be in the whole weekend), and I wondered if I was feeling something kind of active in the space. Maybe Her presence, a bit? And as I often do, once I was relaxing, I reached out to Loki to just kind of touch base and say “hi,” and He responded, but He responded with, “No . . . it’s Her time” and kind of “waved” to my other side, and I noticed a very soft presence, and She said something, very softly, like, “I can help you – if you want/if you’ll trust Me.”
I didn’t really respond then. I don’t always do well with surprises, or meeting new people, and I was really, really not up to trying for a more in-depth, detailed conversation – I usually want runes or cards for that, and I was too exhausted. I also wanted a little time to think, though of course I wanted to ask for details.
I think I felt Her as a warm presence later that night when I laid down to sleep (or maybe that was the next night; I lost track).
So Saturday, I went up to the room during the lunch break to drop some things off before going to get food; I had every intention of coming back after lunch to inquire what She was offering, and what She wanted from me. But instead I got this constant kind of insistent feeling that no, I needed to get the conversation done FIRST – I don’t know if that was Her, or Loki, I couldn’t pinpoint the source, just that it was there, and constant, and when I said, “I can come BACK after lunch” I felt a sort of resistance to that, so I decided I would survive just fine if I had the talk first.
I felt prompted to pull some cards from my Thoth deck first – which was pretty odd, usually Norse Powers (lots of other spirits, too) go for runes (although Loki likes to pick other decks from time to time). That gave me a sense of some of the things She was suggesting She could help me with, some of which seem to be pretty strongly psychological/emotional (which the Thoth deck is -great- at indicating).
Then I asked what did She want from me?
WELL the first word that came to mind was “obedience” which I kind of made a face over, because . . . okay, sure, within reason. I’m willing to work with others, but. That’s something that needs clarification.
Then the runes came out. Nothing came across as “jump to follow orders;” in fact generally, it sounded very similar to what many, many other gods and spirits have said, like “focus,” and “try to find joy in the process” and “be committed to the process” and things like that (I need a Bingo card for spirit messages).
The conversation process was energetically pretty tough – I’ve found that first conversations via divination with Powers often are (later conversations certainly can be, too, especially if it’s more Them communicating to/through me/the runes rather than me doing a more intellectual/intuitive reading, but I think the first times can be particularly rough).
The most surprising thing about the whole encounter was how friendly She felt towards me, by which I mean affectionate in a really particular way. Most initial encounters I’ve had with spirits have been “friendly” as opposed to “hostile” or even “indifferent,” but usually it feels more collegial or Teacher-to-student . . . at any rate, a little more distant than what I was feeling here.
At one point She straight up said She was offering me friendship, and was asking for the same in return – and to try and not let any mythic enmity get in the way.
One of the non-Bingoish things She said was something about wanting me to take more joy in living – and there was a concept of exuberance, or something like that, that came across. (Another thing it reminded me of, though perhaps not quite to that intensity, is the “Great Shout” concept from the Riddlemaster of Hed novels.) While I have had many Others bring up a need to “focus on joy,” it has never with that particular intensity or tone to it.
At another point, I got an image of Her pulling a sword and holding it up, smiling, with an eager feel and a sense of “Let’s go slay some [inner] demons! It will be fun!!” the way others might say “Let’s go to the park and feed some ducks!” (If this can be done in that way, as fun, it would be a really welcome change from an awful lot of other inner work I’ve done.)
As nothing She said alarmed me, and I felt positively inclined towards Her, I indicated I’d give it all a try.
She’s been around a little every day since then, which has also been surprising. Usually, new spirits give some sense of “we’ll communicate occasionally” or maybe indicate a desire for a weekly at most series of interactions, at least to start.
I do quite like Her, though I’m struggling a bit with the “friendship” model, as well as Her clear affection for me; this is something I find challenging sometimes with human beings, too, and I’ve not had any gods approach me like this – romantically, or like a family-member, yes, but this is different.
So far, She feels like Someone who is used to getting Her way, and for the most part, She seems very straightforward and blunt, not in a rude way, but more pragmatic. That’s also a nice change from . . . just about every other deity EVER along with plenty of other spirits. She’s also come across as more boisterous, generally, than most other deities have been, and encouraging of really taking enjoyment from physicality/movement. I don’t have a lot of stamina right now for sustained, intense movement, but I really miss it – and it feels good to get a little nudge to just enjoy the sensation of movement while I’m bicycling, for example.
During one conversation on the topic of the “friendship” approach to the relationship, and how I wasn’t sure how to do that with a deity, I told Her that one of the things I’ve found frustrating with deities is talking to Them about – well, anything, because I almost always feel They’ve got some sort of agenda in Their responses, I can’t just talk to Them, I end up with weird vague answers, or to-do items, or advice about things I don’t want advice about right now. Her response seemed to be along the lines of I could talk to Her as a friend, and not have to worry about that kind of thing. I’m not sure how the things She mentioned as “can help me with” will fit into this, but I guess I’ll find out.
So I am looking forward to how this goes, but in some ways, I feel more out of my depth than usual.