Beltane – A New Definition ~ Pray ~ Love
For those who know me, you remember why I love Beltane so much. For those who don’t know me? Beltane is my birthday. Since choosing the pagan path, I’ve enjoyed and reveled in the spiritual celebration for renewing life that just happened to coincide with the anniversary of my birth. My father passed away on May 1, 2012 and all of that changed.
I didn’t feel much like celebrating after that. I canceled all birthday parties. I declined going to Beltane celebrations. I smiled and said thank you to birthday wishes and received cards and small presents with grace. Then I quickly made my exit to go bawl my eyes out in private.
Four years. That’s how long it took to heal from my father’s death. I held a lot of grief and anger at his passing – not that my life was ruined; not that there as this hole in my life where my father once occupied. I was angry and upset that I wasn’t there. How could I celebrate when I’d failed my duty as a daughter?
Yes, my friends, I hear your exasperated sigh. We’ll talk about invisible and assumed contracts later. Let’s just move along.
Here we are in 2016. My birthday is now a few days away. There *might* be a small party with only a few guests. I *might* wear my crown and graciously accept gifts that I really don’t deserve. I will definitely keep my tears of gratefulness out of public view. Why? There’s something else about being pagan that I forgot in my grief. The PAPAS rules:
Every Sabbat, including Beltane, is about survival. We celebrate overcoming hardships. We praise coming of age milestones even if they cause pain.We leave behind all that does not serve us or help our community. We brush off the frost and snow when adversity freezes our progress. We rise from the ashes anew when our worlds burn.
Forget the Chinese Zodiac for a moment. Leave behind Western astrology for a minute. This is my Phoenix Year. I’m getting ready to shine. I’m leaving behind all that doesn’t help me. I’m giving myself an attitude adjustment and taking off the “love and light” coloured glasses. I can’t fool myself anymore. This is my year to rise. This is my year to shake off the ashes. This is my year to walk confidently through the flames of that once burned me. Beltane isn’t just a party to, ahem, “reaffirm life” anymore. Not to me. Beltane is now my finish line, my proof that I’m alive and burning all that stands in my way.
Burn bright my friends.