2016

I keep seeing dates things are going to happen in 2018, and thinking “Oh, that’s soon.” Then I realize I’ve skipped a year entirely, and 2017 is going to need to have her say.

Looking back:

I am deep in my Saturn Return in Sagittarius. I may have spent some of my harder nights obsessively googling “Saturn Return in Sagittarius.” One of the things I read mentioned that a Sagittarius Saturn Return might be good for finishing up an educational path left undone (after six years away, I finished my bachelor’s degree), or committing to a spiritual path (I completed the ceremony of confirmation to my path in May, on the exact day of alignment with my natal saturn, though I only noticed that later).

I graduated in June and had the summer OFF! I had plans! So many plans. Instead, chronic fatigue came with a vengeance and I spent most of the summer desperately fighting to stay upright. Which is also how I’d spent most of the winter, but at least then I didn’t feel like I was supposed to be having fun.

In early summer I got to experience several amazing visits from elders in my path, in mid summer I went to a beautiful retreat, and in late summer I was invited to do a healing ceremony with several experienced healers on my path. An entire ceremony just for me and my chronic fatigue/issues with mediumship. It was excruciating. To take up that much space – to have all these amazing people taking the time to focus on me.

And then it felt like they ripped out my insides (though no one was touching me). I have literally experienced only one thing that viscerally painful – childbirth. For a week after it felt like it hurt to even be looked at, and my chronic fatigue was as deep as ever.

Then…it wasn’t. Not like “I have enough energy that I am able to drag myself out of bed today,” because I’ve often had that. I was teaching 20 hours a week and taking 15 credits a quarter of hellishly difficult nursing prerequisites. But like “I have so much energy I want to go for a run.”

I’d go for a run. And not end up spending a week in bed afterwards.

One of the very deep beautiful lessons of seven years of CFS is that any ask on my energy became an automatic no. As the fatigue lifted and the asks came in, that no remained. And so for the first time in my memory, I had energy just for me. I hadn’t realized I’d been believing all my energy had to be for other people until I used it all up giving it away. Having it back is a very precious gift.

And I’ve had relapses. I’m in one right now (she types, at 1pm, barely awake for the first time in the day). But 3+ weeks of actual energy and a week of figuring out how I’ve gotten out of alignment with my mediumship and gotten gummed up with beings again is okay. I have hope again.

I suppose I had hope anyway, because we took out loans to send me back to school based on guidance, knowing full well I might end up too sick to ever work, much less work as a midwife, which is the path I’m on at the moment. But it was a small hope, and it’s grown.

“We”

David and I have spent a lot of this year unraveling our previous marriage. Knowing that no matter what came next, what had come before could not continue. We wrote our old agreement then canceled, tore, and burned it. Then we wrote a new interim agreement as a foundation for wherever we might go next.

And it really did have to be “wherever.” No attachment to staying together. Attachment to honoring our family, yes. We knew when we got pregnant it meant family forever and no part of that is being unwritten. But marriage? That had to be an open option.

So I spent a few months crying about that. Not so much about the future, but about the dreams I’d had when I got married. Where are my other babies? The ones I was going to have? The years of health and happiness I’d expected? The money I thought we’d make, the fun I thought we’d have? I had to mourn the person I thought I was and the marriage I thought I was having.

Now, grieving mostly behind me, I do honor the marriage I really had. The person I turned out to be under the stories my pride told.

And David and I are coming to the end of our interim period. There are still a few loose ends and two big ceremonies between now and when we will commit to the next shape our relationship is going to take. Against all odds, right now we are both excited to be with one another. As if this was all just a passage to coming present, meeting one another anew, and starting again. But also…maybe not. More improbable is how generally okay I feel about it. I’m no longer clinging to him for identity in the same way I was before.

Thank you, 2016

This year has been a strong one for me. I’ve often felt overwhelmed by the things I was being asked to do. Still, I am learning to trust my community, to accept (and sometimes even ask for) their help. As I get cleaner, everything gets better.

Next post I’ll look ahead to 2017, but today I am sitting with 2016. Grateful. Very grateful.