Before we get to the meat and potatoes here, I should inform people who I had a regular, American thanksgiving. It was good. We spent the day at TH’s aunt’s house. We got to Skype with her son who is living in Japan as a teacher. (I think he’s teaching English, but he may be teaching Japanese? I’m not sure. His major was Japanese something-or-other.) However, I don’t really see the point of the holiday aside from getting together with your family and eating a turkey. I don’t find it very spiritual and I don’t find it much use aside from eating turkey. It’s the only time of year that I eat turkey.
Also, this thanksgiving polytheist… thing fell in my lap… today.
This morning, I awoke from a very odd dream. I don’t normally dream about my OTHERS™. Or, if I do this on a regular basis, I never recall them. When I do wake up with them in my memory banks, there tends to be a large reason behind it, usually a warning of some kind. What was even more fascinating was that I dreamed of Hekate for the first time.
I was at her altar in my home, but it was outside. Or maybe, there was no roof above the alcove I have her table in. (And that makes sense since I want to try and find a scarf with stars on it, as pictured in this image of Nut to tack to my ceiling.) Anyway, I was kneeling in front of it and I was being incredibly formal as I made offerings. I couldn’t see the offerings, but it was definitely me, kneeling, and formally giving her offerings of some kind or another. I was also speaking formal words, possibly some of the ones I’ve been reading about in Hekate: Liminal Rites by Sorita D’Este. Again, I don’t remember what words I was speaking or what I was offering, but the dream was important.
I’m pretty sure Hekate was trying to tell me something. I figured I would do something big and bad ass for her on the new moon.
Today, however, is the first of the month of Sf-Bdt according to my Kemetic calendar. This is also the first of the new season of Peret, or winter. I knew I was going to do something in commemoration of this. Since I’m not huge on festivals and big-huge things, I try to at least bake something at the start of the new month and I’ll go a little more extra on things when it’s the start of a new season. But over all, I’m really not a huge ritual, celebration person. I like being the low-key, lay person I’m pretending to be. Of course, it’s funny how you assume or figure things will end up in one way but they really end up in another. Today was about giving thanks for the things that I do have.
You see, things haven’t been very well over here. On Friday, I go back to being unemployed and I’m pretty sure I can’t file for unemployment benefits because I’m only a temporary employee. After this, I don’t know where money is going to be coming from. We receive TH’s miniscule weekly allotment from his unemployment, but even with me trimming the fat on certain bills, it’s not enough to pay for everything. I figure that if I could get cash assistance from the state in the tune of, say, three hundred dollars, we should be able to survive… as long as we also get food assistance. So, suffice it to say that I’ve been wicked depressed and moody. It’s at the point where I’m cleaning like a fiend, taking non-cleaning out on my family members (even though it’s not their fault that they didn’t do something, but I feel like it is because I’m angry at the world), and rearranging my entire house to boot. Well, parts of my house. I’m sobbing internally at the thought that I won’t be able to buy anyone anything for Christmas, again.
Since my daily rune pull today was othala, I decided to take this as a sign that I should be thankful for what I do have.
Sure, I don’t have a job or won’t in the near future, but I have to have faith that I will be provided for by the universe. As easy as it is for me to slip into a deep, black depression over all of this, I really can’t. I have a four-year-old and a twenty-four year old who relies on me. I have cleaning and laundry to do. I have the ability to ask for help from numerous people and I will receive something. I still have some money in savings so maybe Christmas and bills won’t go completely to shit. My car is still functioning even if she’s not at tip-top shape. So, while I’m liable to be miserable and depressed again in the upcoming week or two, TODAY, there’s no fucking room.
And I’m thankful for that, too.
To get the party started, I went to my local Goodwill and purchased some items.
I had actually gone in there with the intention of finding a small, but wider bowl for Hekate. She was going to get pomegranates when I did the thing for her, but I was hoping to have a bowl that had a wider lip than the one I have. No dice on that, obviously. The wooden bowl was purchased for Papa Legba. At a future point, I’m hoping to paint it red and get a black paint-pen to inscribe his veve into the middle. Since I can’t afford a real calabash bowl, like they do in Haiti, but I can afford the fifty cents this bowl cost me… Yeah. He was all for it. The two glass tumblers are for Hetharu and Sekhmet. They’ve recently requested oils for offerings. Right now, they’ve got regular old extra virgin olive oil, but I think they really want scented ones. The picture was for Hekate. She likes plants, right?
Before I went home, I decided to stop at the grocery store. I had AN ITCH and I couldn’t go home. So, in a half-daze, I wandered around the grocery store and picked up cheap items for tonight’s dinner and for any of my OTHERS™. The only one who didn’t cost me anything, oddly enough, was Papa Legba. (Although, he almost talked me into another red candle in a glass holder. ALMOST.) Hekate sent me to the fruit section for a pomegranate and then I went zooming down to flowers. They had a pretty little bouquet on special for five dollars. I was shocked by her choice, though; oranges? I think it’s a last lingering feels regarding the end of the autumn, but who knows what’s going through a person’s head when they– OH. You know. I read something about her getting lilies from someone as an offering and guess what kind of flower is in the bouquet? I get it.
The next step was to notice that I was being trolled by the land spirit.
It’s the full moon tonight and that was when I decided I would leave my monthly offerings for the land spirit. I didn’t take a picture because I didn’t leave them until it was cold and dark outside. But, later, I went out and did leave a diced apple and some kumquats for the land spirit. Tomorrow before work, I’m going to leave a slice of bread and the big fucking rock I plucked up from one of my local cemeteries. I also talked, briefly, with the land spirit today about how things are going really badly in my life (again). I got the overwhelming feeling from it that I needed to stop worrying so damn much. I guess I’m getting it from all over: the gods, the lwa, and the universe will provide, so knock it off. It was nice to talk with it, though, since I always think that winter = land spirit communication being remote. INCORRECT, SIR.
So, after a lot of cleaning and generally annoying labor, I went around and began baking. If nothing else, when I celebrate a new month, I will bake something for Hetharu. However, I got the feeling that my baking was more in line with a Certain Other Feminine Deity than the one living with Sekhmet. I’m just getting trolled by all the female deities… Of course, I have to admit to everyone here that I’m not surprised. I know that Aset’s statue was in that dream I had about Mut a while back, so I was kind of expecting it. I’m just… I hope she likes small offerings in my kitchen. I’ve been putting her off for a while and she’s been patiently waiting. Apparently, patience has run out. And I’m pretty sure that she’s here in the FOREVER WAY, like Sekhmet. So, this should be weird and interesting. And it explains so much shit…
But that’s a post for a different day.
So, after I did my baking chores, I went around and started making my thanksgiving dinner. Of course, it was small and tiny. I can’t afford big and expansive. And besides, that’s kind of the point, to me, in a thanksgiving meal. It’s my family sitting down and enjoying what I make. It’s the three of us lauding my cooking abilities (of which are good, okay, but I always wait to see how people react when I cook, all nervous like, because what if I kill someone by accident?). It’s the three of us arguing over who gets the last dollop of milk in a cup. It’s the three of us being a family.
And of course, before we all sat down, all of my OTHERS™ were summoned to their respective places.
So, that, ladies and gentleman, is how a polytheist can get down with the giving of thanks.