Yesterday was my birthday. It marks the end of my 50th circuit around the sun. For those wondering how that translates into what today’s modern society calls our “age” – that makes me fifty. Yep, one of the “big” birthdays. But to be honest, I still feel like I did eight years ago. Currently, I am sick with a nagging and very robust cold — but I really feel the same way I did eight years ago. For the most part.
Eight years ago, I buckled up my belt, set my personal spiritual Path to the side, and started to look at other ways to walk my Path. The next thirty days would lead me to many doorways, but on October 30th – I set my feet on a path of Druidry, I had no fecking clue how I was going to get there. Just that what I had been reading and dreaming (in case you have not figured it out, dreams play a huge part in my spirituality). In time, I found myself being placed at the doorstep of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids again, and again. I eventually took the big step and started my Bardic Grade. And stumbled a whole lot. A whole lot.
Earlier this year, I took the time to go to the very first Gulf Coast Gathering, and opted to take my initiation into the Bardic Grade. I had already done the initiation solo, but being initiated with my fellow Bards at that moment changed my entire perspective. Two particular individuals were at that initiation, who I have a deep reverence for. Both had comments for me about my Path. Both have had a great influence over who I am and how I have approached my studies since that March evening. The solo ritual was life-changing as well, but the initiation at the Gathering was vastly different and to keep the the one portion of the entire initiation that makes it so magickal….that’s as far as I will pull the shroud back from the ceremony. The mystery is still key….
Its also reshaped some of my thinking as a solo Pagan – as a solo Druid. As I noted in the last blog post, being solo does not mean you have to be alone all the time. In fact, its always good to have some other Druids that you meet from time to time to just socialize with. That tiny socialization factor really does help – a whole lot more than one might imagine. A whole lot more than I had imagined.
So here I am at fifty years of age – starting my fifty-first circuit around the sun (to borrow from the Grateful Dead as I typically do). I feel no different than I have previously, but as with every single day, every single footstep, every single breath – I am changing. The individual I was ten seconds ago is a different person than I am now. That is part of what makes up the entire universe around us. We are all energy, energy that is constantly changing, constantly evolving, constantly dying off, constantly renewed with each moment. Interacting with all the other energies around us. In whatever forms those energies take.
So again, I sit back and look at who I am. I look at where I have come from. All the mistakes and mis-steps I have taken in my life. And all the most awesome steps in the right direction I have taken as well. Reflection is not just about learning from your mistakes, but also reveling in your successes as well. And that leads to the one question that everyone always seems to ask: what would you change about your past if you could?
Not one thing. Changing anything would change who I am now. And I really like who I am. Warts and all.