That #domagick thing

Hey Pumpkins!

So, Andrieh Vitimus’s December #domagick challenge was an incredible experience.  I got so much out of it and feel that I grew as a person and did a lot of healing.  In life, there are many areas that we strive to effect change in, both in the magickal and the mundane.  But, when we do work that is based on healing our souls, on growing and becoming a more evolved person, everything else seems a tad meaningless.  It is the magnus opus- the great work.

December’s challenge was to do one meditative act, every day, for 20-30 minutes, and then blog about our experience.  In all of the areas of my life, it seemed that my love life was the area that needed the most attention.  We accept the love that we think we deserve, and in the past, I didn’t think I deserved much.  So, every day for a month, I looked myself in the mirror, sipped a “potion” of flowers and fruit, and said “I love you, Caroline.”  It was really hard!

What was harder though was the vulnerability that came with blogging my experiences.  This blog is also used for my business website.  Posting my imperfections would lead to a decline in page “likes”, as well as a decline in business.  Not only that, but I started becoming very ashamed that the gentleman that I have been seeing would find it, read it, and run away screaming. We’re both adults.  And adults have baggage.  I am okay being honest and open, but I also want to have more control over what I reveal and when.  Just as we are savouring getting to know each other, I don’t want to vomit all of my issues in his lap.   I believe that there is bravery in vulnerability, but there is also a time and place, sometimes safer than others.

I am not doing the #domagick challenge for January and February.  Because I started the December challenge so late, and needed a bit of time to recover, it didn’t make sense to start.  The February challenge is tied to the January challenge, and I am doing another personal challenge for February.   I am not sure if he has announced one for March, but most likely, I will start participating again.

However, when I do start participating again, I will not be using this website/ blog.  I will have another one set up, and will move all of the entries regarding December’s challenge over there.  I will be sharing those entries only where I feel confident to do so, which will be in two magick related groups, and on my Facebook “safe list”.

I also gained something else very valuable from this challenge.  I learned that yes, in fact, I CAN do ritual AND blog every day, all while working a full time job and running a business.

I would like to thank those of you who did follow me on this journey, and hope that you have equal interest in my next challenge.  And M, if you did in fact read those entries, thank you for not running away screaming.  Although you are literally on the other side of the world right now.  If you didn’t read them, and don’t know what I’m talking about, please disregard 🙂

#letstalk about mental illness

Today is #letstalk day, raising awareness for, and ending the stigma against mental illness. Though I am personally not a fan of the Bell Corporation, I do strongly believe in this cause. I have a degree in psychology, and myself suffer from depression and anxiety. I am so thankful to have a wonderful support system, including a kind and compassionate family doctor. My mental health is well managed by a combination of tarot, mindfulness meditation, talk therapy, exercise, diet, social support, snuggles from my dog, my connection with nature, my gods and ancestors, and yes, medication. Mental illness is real illness.  It’s important to have many tools in my kit to stay healthy.  Meds are not “happy pills”.  I am neither high nor addicted.  My brain eats up the good stuff faster than average, so I take a low dose of an ssri medication to slow that down.  I’m the same me that I always was.  I still feel a wide range of emotions.  I am still able to cry when I am sad, or feel angry at injustice.  I am just the me who sleeps 7-8 hours a night.  I am the me who can enjoy life and the things I love to do.  I’m the me who doesn’t feel compelled to argue about every little stupid thing on the internet.  I am the me with a better sense of humour.  I am the me who no longer struggles with feelings of suicide.  I am a better mother, better friend, better tarot reader, better lover, and overall better human being when I employ these tools in my coping kit. 
If you are struggling with mental illness, please know that there are methods to manage your illness, and there is no shame in asking for help.  Mental illness is real illness, and in most cases, is treatable.  If one method doesn’t work, try another.  Don’t make permanent decisions based on temporary emotions.
Here are some resources if you don’t know where to start.  These are local to London, Ontario, but google can give you services closer to you:
-your family doctor.  If you do not have a family doctor, google “London Ontario doctors accepting new patients” (or your own city and province).  You will get a list of qualified physicians in your area.  I wish that all doctors could be as amazing as mine, but I don’t think that she is accepting new patients right now.
-a friend.  Sometimes you don’t want to talk to a stranger.  But be aware that your friends may have not penciled in your crisis.  If one person doesn’t have availability right that second, it’s not personal.  Keep trying until you can find someone safe to talk to.  You are not alone.
-London Distress Line 519-667-6711
-Crisis Response 519-433-2023
-Sexual Assault Centre  519.438.2272
-Kids help phone 1-800-668-6868 This is for those under 18, but parents sometimes call to ask about their kids
-LGBT youth line  1.800.268.9688
-Daya counselling (offers geared to income)
-Therapists in London, Ontario
-cognitive behavioural therapy.  There are a wide range of books out there if you can’t get to a counsellor.  Cognitive behavioural therapy can be self lead, and includes a lot of homework and journaling.
Be well.

#domagick The L-Bomb: Day 23

Ritual was a soft place to land after a frustrating afternoon.  Nothing serious.  I can’t believe how close I am to the end.  I’m going to miss it, but the next challenge has already started.

I had my EVP on last night, and it started showing a list of ex boyfriend names, which, in itself is rather odd.  There was only one name though that really gave me a reaction-R.   Over a decade ago, we were together for about two and a half years.  He was probably my great love.  But, he didn’t love me back.  At the 6 month point, I was ready to drop the L-Bomb on him.  He told me that he was unable to feel love because of the trauma he had endured as a child.  It was unfair of him to not warn me of this before we started dating.  It was even more unfair that he continued after I confessed my feelings.  So here we were.  Me, desperate to be loved and him, unable to.  They say that we accept the love we think we deserve, and I chose someone who couldn’t love.  That speaks volumes about what I believed about myself.

At one point, we were seriously discussing marriage.  We were actually writing vows that didn’t include the L-Bomb, because he would never feel it towards me.  I was ready to marry and spend my life with someone who would never love me.  That’s hard core.

I’ve made significant progress since then, but I have still tolerated sub-standard treatment in the plight of love.  I am becoming better at drawing boundaries and sticking to them.  But once my own feelings start going, I’m historically somewhat helpless in enforcing boundaries.

I haven’t seen R since we broke up.  It broke me for years, but I am long over him.  However, I miss his son.  His son M was a year and a bit older than my daughter, and they were close.  I loved that kid like my own. He was always a shy kid, so it doesn’t surprise me that he doesn’t have Facebook.  I was able to find him through his step father’s profile.  He’s HUGE!  He has to be 6 and a half feet tall.  He’ll be 19 in March, and started college in September.  He has a girlfriend and they look adorable together.  Though I may never see him again, I am still so proud of him.

I talked yesterday about strengthening some connections with safe friends, but I think that my social life might be put on hold until after I quit the muggle job.  10 hour days, 60 hour weeks, and late night Thursdays leave me with not enough energy to function.  Though I am able to develop meaningful connections with my clients, it is still me caring for them.  All day every day of people in need is draining on its own.  Add to that the broken, under staffed and underpaid system, and it’s easy to see why my social life has withered.  Not much longer though.

#domagick The L-Bomb: Day 22

Yesterday’s post made me think about what it really is that I need.  It’s not necessarily romantic love.  It’s connection.  Throughout most of human history, we have lived in tribal communities who ate, slept and lived together.  This is a juxtaposition to our current lives of flaking on plans, and hiding behind computer screens.  I look at the poor choices that I’ve made in romantic relationships, but in the past, a combination of poor social skills and poor judgement has lead me to some really unhealthy friendship circles, too.   I was very close friends with a woman I cared about and called “sister”.  She decided that my choice to follow my doctor’s advice on weight loss for the sake of my long term health and quality of life was a personal attack on her.  Every thing that another person was struggling with, she had to make all about her.  She has this sickly co-dependent relationship with her partner, and has sacrificed absolutely everything for them.  This was not a safe person to connect with.  I’ve attempted to connect in the past with others who were gossipy, judgemental and overall just not good for me to be around.  It’s time I practiced better discernment.  I am attempting to reconnect with friends who I don’t see often enough.  Going out with other people is like exercising.  Before you go, you really don’t want to go.  But after you get there, you are so glad that you did.  I wish that I was closer with my own sisters.  We don’t hug.  We don’t say that we love each other.  My younger sister and I have talked about this, and are starting to get closer.  We fought as kids, but into adulthood, she has become my most trusted friend.  My older sister is making some poor quality life choices, and is not a safe person for me to connect with right now.  I see how my roommate is with her sister.  I’m a part of a Geek Girls group including two sisters who live together.  My roommate is a safe person to connect with, as is her sister.  They have agreed to welcome me as one of their own.  The Geek Girls are safe for me to connect with.  There are others too who are good choices.  Much tea needs to be poured.

I need to remember the Jim Rohn quote “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the post time with.”  As I am leaving my muggle job soon and embarking on a new journey towards self-employment and success, these words are truer than ever.

I connect with my muggle job clients as well.  I do my best to maintain professional boundaries.  But when you see someone every day, or most days, or even once a week, for some very personal care, it’s only human to connect with them.  I do my best to be absolutely present with them while I am providing care.  I listen to them, and I try to change the problems they are having with the system.  This is the biggest problem that I have in my muggle job- trying to fix the system.  I have a huge blog entry coming after this challenge about the state of health care in Ontario.  But when there is a problem and my clients are unhappy, I care enough to want to fix it.  This makes me unpopular with management.

I had a talk with the gentleman I’ve been seeing.  It’s been a balance because I want to protect myself from getting hurt and avoid being used, but I also don’t want to rush things into being artificial.  I want to savour getting to know each other.  So I talked with him today about my past, or at least the Coles notes version.  I’m okay taking my time to get to know him.  And he seems to enjoy getting to know me.  He has some upcoming obligations that are demanding on his time, as do I, and we see each other what we can.  He does see me as a person, and not just an object, and really, that’s as much as I need to know right now.  Both of our availabilities are going to vastly change in the next two months.  I am willing to allow things to grow organically til then.  I can feel connection without pressure.

#domagick The L-Bomb: Day 21

I feel like this challenge has just ripped the scab off.  Not sure how much healing as actually taken place.  Instead I’m just more self aware of just how damaged I am.  I am not sure that there’s coming back from this, or hope for me.  And if there is, I’m not sure that it will happen in the next 9 days.

Then I saw this:

It made me see that what I seek is meaningful human connection, and the only acceptable form in our society that I can seek this from is in romance.  But my disabilities and trauma prevent me from making meaningful connections.  So instead, I get used for sex.  It makes me feel that there is even less hope for me to get the connection and love that I, that all of us, are hardwired as humans to need.

#domagick The L-Bomb: Day 20

My dreams are on fire with insight it seams.

Last night I had a dream about the one guy I did date who had his shit together.  Here’s what happened in real life.  It was about 6 or 7 years ago.  I met him through social networking, and he pursued me hard for about a year and a half.  We finally met and there was instant chemistry.  He seemed to be really into me at first.  He’d come visit me, take me to lovely dinners.  Though I never expected or felt entitled, he was very generous.  I was going through some really crappy custody stuff, and he was incredibly helpful and supportive with researching legal stuff.  He had blogged about meeting someone special, but we were never really official.  I started to drop my guard around him.  I started to fall for him.  Things shifted and it then became all about me driving to him, as he was too busy with work.  At Samhain, he invited me to bring my dog to Toronto, because he wanted to bond with her.  My dog will bond with any person with a pulse, but it was sweet.  He bought treats and toys for her to have at his place.  He invited my daughter and I (I think she was 9 at the time) to go to the zoo with him on boxing day.  I normally keep my daughter quite separate from my dating life (or did when she was younger), so wanting to meet my kid was a huge freakin’ deal.  My daughter adored him, and they had a great time together.  As I was starting to drive home that night, my brakes failed in Toronto and I sailed through an intersection on Dufferin near the 401.  I was so lucky to react and apply the emergency break.  I was able to get to a safe place, and I called him to pick us up.  My daughter and I stayed at his place that night, we took the car to his mechanic, and he drove us back to London.  I then had my broken vehicle in Toronto, and I was in London.  His mechanic was impossible to deal with, and a month later had not even ordered the part.  I needed to go through him to talk to his mechanic.  But, he seemed to have completely lost interest in me.  It felt like he was just all about “the chase”, and once the chase was over, meh.  I was strung along for five months, never actually being able to call him my boyfriend.  In the end he chose another woman over me.  I was devastated.  He broke my heart.  After him I took a long break from dating, including a year of abstinence, which was broken when I started dating W.

We’ve recently become friends again, and are going to see the Viking museum exhibit at the ROM next month.  Just as friends.  I have zero romantic interest in him.  He can’t be trusted with my fragile heart.

So, I think this past pain is also adding to my push to want to lock down the current gentleman into a relationship, even though we’ve barely spent time together.  If it’s official, it’s harder to leave me, or so I tell myself.  I am really trying to take things slow, but that fear of heartbreak is never far behind.  It then also makes me think, if it’s not official, should I be seeing other people?  Should I have a back up?  I am really not in the mood to be strung along and left for someone thinner and prettier.  I’m far too demisexual to ever consider polyamory.  When I’m into someone, I am into just them.  It would feel very dishonest to be interested in this new gentleman and seeing other people while he is figuring out what he wants.

Why is it never what I want?  Why is it always on his terms?  Why do I never have power when it comes to my own relationship status?

#domagick The L-Bomb: Day 19

Trigger warnings for sexual violence and child abuse.  Not posting this one on the business page.

I had a dream last night that I was in WalMart with my most recent ex.  Usually, when I am dreaming about a store or shopping, it represents something that I need to obtain.  But, instead of shopping for what I wanted, or even browsing, I was screaming at D for all the crappy things he put me through- the two facedness, forcing me to support him, refusing to clean without an invitation, the lying, the cheating, promising he’d get a car and not, crashing my car and refusing to pay for damages, letting his kids treat me like garbage so much emotional labour.  I awoke about 5am, really upset and furious.  I realized that I am not in any way still in love with him, and probably never really was.  I was never even attracted to him in the first place.  I settled, sold myself out, and ignored my boundaries because of the need to feel loved.  And he betrayed me.  I am far angrier and upset about the betrayal than I am about him hurting me.  And of course, D was W 2.0, so all the betrayal I felt about W was funneled into D.  Really, the betrayal I’ve felt from dozens of men, from being objectified online, being stood up, being assaulted, or any number of shitty behaviours were all funnelled into the most recent betrayal.  I have been so focused on betrayal that I am not looking around at what I could have, shopping for a better option.  It’s also dawned on me that I really have a history of dating losers- no education, no car, live in squalor, unattractive, no goals, no ambition, because I thought it would be safer and easier.  But they end up betraying me anyways.  If I am going to get hurt, maybe I should be setting boundaries for, oh, I don’t know, someone I’m actually attracted to?  Someone who lives like an adult, has ambitions, a career and has cleaned their bathroom since Harper left office?   Not be pushing 50 and going to Jack’s every Tuesday for cheap tequila night with 20 and 30 year old friends?  If love is going to hurt, maybe I should enjoy myself in the process.  Maybe, someone who actually has their shit together will maybe appreciate me and treat me better.  Just a thought.

I fell back asleep, and had an awful nightmare that I had gone to a psychologist’s office, and he let me read my file.  It was every shitty thing that my mother had done to me.  As I read each page, sometimes documented in macaroni images by 3 year old me, I started having flashbacks in the dream.  My mother betrayed me.  She was supposed to protect me and instead she was my predator.  She was the first betrayal, and ultimately, the most devastating.  My longing to be loved is stemming from replacing that first betrayal with the love that was absent from the moment of my conception.  This is why I do the ritual.

I woke up this morning completely paralyzed with fear.  It was a good 45 minutes before I could move, and another 15 before I could get up and dressed.  I was too emotionally exhausted for ritual, so it didn’t get done until before bedtime.


#domagick The L-Bomb: Day 18

My first client of the day cancelled, so I have about 45 minutes to do ritual and blog.

Trigger warning related to sexual violence.  I will not be posting this one on the business page, but it’s not hard to find.  Again, if you believe that tarot readers should have an inhumanly perfect life and be all light and love 24/7, please don’t read this.

Saturday night I was watching season 2 of Outside Man- a BBC documentary series where Reggie Yates infiltrates subculture pockets to hear both sides of the story.  The last episode he entered the so called “Manosphere” of Men’s Rights Activists (MRAs), including sub-human sack of shit, and self-proclaimed pick up artist, and Roosh V.  He brags about raping women, and will say anything and do anything to convince women to have sex with him.  It was so triggering that I needed to take the next day off of work- three days after receiving a written warning at work for attendance.

I’ve been thinking a lot about not just consent, but emotional consent.  In the sitcom “How I Met Your Mother”, one character had a play book for methods of tricking women into having sex with them.  If and when discovered, the woman who was the target of his “play” would be angry and feel violated- usually slapping him in the face or throwing a drink at him.  I have been the victim of plays.  To be emotionally duped feels worse that a flat out rape.  It’s not just my body, but also a mind fuck.  There have been too many times when I thought I was consenting to one thing, and it turned out to not be the case.  Most of this was driven out of my desire, nay need, to feel loved.  As a demi-sexual, I need to feel an emotional connection to someone to feel sexually attracted to them.  I would meet someone and be absolutely clear that I was incapable of casual sex and that I was seeking something long term.  They would agree.  A physical relationship would develop, lasting from a night to several months, to discover that they had no intentions of ever committing or even caring about me.  The level of violation and pain that I felt would be far worse than physical assault- lasting months to years, usually only ceasing when replaced with the next one, who would undoubtedly do the exact same thing to me.  This cycle has occurred for most of my adult life.

I self-medicated with an entire bottle of wine, and a whole bag of chips, sobbing uncontrollably.  Keeping myself fat became a way to shield myself from predators.  Now that the fat is coming off, I feel vulnerable to rape and coercion with every pound I lose.

I think of the times that I had been assaulted.  How many of those times did I put myself in harms way of dangerous situations out of a need to be loved?  How many times did I fall victim to pick up artists while clouded by the poor judgement of my broken brain?  I felt an unbelievable amount of guilt and shame.

I think that’s driving my want to lock in a relationship with the gentleman I have been seeing.  I really like this guy, and though he continues to show signs of interest, I am so terrified that I am being used, that I have put myself in this situation again.

I say it’s been three months, November-January.  But really, it’s half way through November to half way through January.  So that’s two months.  And with how busy our schedules are, and how conflicting our schedules are, we really have probably only actually seen each other 8-10 times since reconnecting.  We barely know each other.  This is really the most mature man whom I’ve ever dated (which considering the man-children I’ve dated in the past, the bar is not high).  On one hand, I want this to develop naturally and feel comfortable with him before we actually form a relationship.  On the other hand, by deep fear of abandonment and being used is driving me to rush things.  Really, I need to chill the fuck out and enjoy myself.  Because aside from this fear of getting my fingers slammed in the car door, I am actually enjoying getting to know him.  I feel like I am such a naive schmuck for taking this kind of risk.  It traditionally has not played in my favour to be emotionally vulnerable.

#domagick The L-bomb Day 17

Ritual complete.  The L-bomb is a lot less itchy now.  I think that I may even believe myself when I say it.  I actually have a LOT to say about what is going on in my head, but have yet to find the time to write about it.  Tomorrow I host tarot meet up so won’t have a whole lot of blogging time either.  Or Wednesday.  Or Thursday.  Friday?  Maybe?  Hopefully before then.

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