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Moving Ahead for 2020

I came across something I wrote seven months ago. I wrote, “It is not my life path to heal wounds I did not cause.” And I stopped there. Perhaps because there truly was nothing left to say in that moment, or because I realized that putting that out into the world at that moment might not have been constructive. Regardless, that sentence hung out on the Notes app of my iPad for seven months untouched, unheeded, forgotten.

I came back to it tonight because I have, thanks to my good old Facebook timeline, run across photos of people and experiences I have missed, and still miss. I have made some choices that frankly ended some friendships, and perhaps I have been slow to see that, or perhaps I held out hope that those friendships were not gone. I knew that my choice to leave a community of which I’d been a part for thirty years would result in a number of people deciding that I just wasn’t their cup of tea, and although I may have thought I prepared myself for that, I have been feeling the loss a bit more keenly. This is not to say that I feel I made the wrong choice, or that I would go back to that community, but perhaps more that I haven’t really known how to grieve the loss.

This experience is definitely showing me that I did not err in my judgment. I can count on one hand the number of people who truly remained friends with me after my departure, and by that I mean those whose still take a moment to say hello or ask how I am in real time, and in real life (not the internets). I could not have remained where I was and attempted to repair damage that others in the group were unwilling to see. I could not have remained where I was and remained healthy, happy, and whole. I can only move forward, ever forward.

In the time since I left, happily, other friends have emerged. Some of these are brand new friends, and I am loving and cultivating these friendships like one would care for a seedling one has planted and nurtured as it became a plant. As was said in Frank Herbert’s Dune, “The beginning is the most delicate time.” Much like hardy annuals, older friendships that were not part of my former group have re-emerged, gotten closer, grown stronger. I was also able to begin a new coven, without oversight or commentary from my former cohorts, which was immensely freeing. I have signed a publishing contract and look forward to the my first (not self-published) book hitting the market in 2021. I have created new alliances and moved onward.

Real change is hard, and it can be painful. The rewards that this change brings far outweigh the losses, as difficult as they have been. I can now safely say that I have been able to create a life that matches up with my own expectations. I am calmer and more centered and less tired than I have been in a long time. I can see the shade being thrown at me by my former community in the form of de-friending and the occasional block on Facebook, in addition to the odd bit of gossip making its way back to me. However, the irony is that the shade throws light on where my true friends and my true calling have been all along.

I am happy to say that 2020 looks to be a year of greater joy, fellowship, and peace than I have felt in a long time.

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