52491588_10211348469341623_4571024274545967104_nPutting a name to myself has always been difficult for me because I have a habit of throwing the rules away before even opening the manual. Religion to me doesn’t have structure- doesn’t need it unless you do, and I don’t. So after growing up Baptist, having a brief stint in the Wiccan path, and jumping back onto the Baptist bandwagon, I finally found a community in college where I could explore what it was I actually believed.

Paganism and witchcraft has always settled well with my soul, but after the aforementioned stint with some Wiccan friends, I knew I didn’t want the structure that came with that kind of practice. You see, I’ve never done well with absolutes. (All the, “You have to cast a circle before-” “Always call the corners before-” “Don’t ever blow out a candle or-“) I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a lazy-ass witch. I don’t have a lot of time for the formalities and when I do, I’m too tired or low on spoons to do them. If that’s what helps you, then great! But for me, I’ve never felt like my gods needed- or wanted- the stress and anxiety that tends to follow me around when I try to follow the rules. (Perhaps that’s why Loki has taken such a liking to me. I prefer the chaos in my practice rather than the stuffy textbook must-do’s.)

So my practice became a big scrapbook of different traditions and beliefs that suited me the best, things that I liked and enjoyed and felt within my bones. For me, simply lighting some candles and welcoming my gods was enough to start the fun. I didn’t need a circle or the corners or the fancy crystals in each direction. Not to mention the fact that my memory is shit and I couldn’t have memorized all the fancy rhymes and phrases the books tell you to say aloud anyway.

As for my gods? I don’t really remember how they all found me. I don’t have cool stories about visions or dreams or crows following me around. Or if I do, I can’t remember them. I’ve been fascinated with mythology since I was able to read, so it’s no surprise that my practice would find it’s way in that direction. As much as I know a lot of Lokeans hate to hear it, I do believe Loki first came to me as a ‘god’ through Marvel. I’d heard of him before of course, read some of the stories. But I never really got interested until I was sucked into the nerd life that is comic books. (And let me get this out of the way now. No, I do not worship Tom Hiddleston, though I will freely admit that I do worship dat ass. No, I do not think Tom Hiddleston is Loki.) I think Tom’s interpretation was basically Loki’s way of poking me in the cheek to get my attention. Like, “hey bitch, I’m right here, look at me!” And quite frankly, I’ve never looked back. Hades and Persephone were less obvious. I’ve loved their story for as long as I’ve known about Greek mythology and it just seemed to fall into place. It just seemed right.

Sure, sometimes I’m a bit sad that I didn’t get a big reveal or a big sign to tell cool stories about. But you know, I don’t think I ever really needed one. All my life religion has been shoved in my face with people telling me what I had to believe and that if I didn’t, I’d suffer for it. So having that choice, being able to look for myself and see someone looking back? Well that was exactly what I needed and I don’t think I’d change it for the world.

So here I am today, still flailing around like I know what I’m doing while I pretend that, yes the wax was supposed to drip there and no it wasn’t a complete accident. I’m still learning, I don’t think I’ll ever really stop, but that’s the beauty of it all. Opinions and beliefs change and grow as you do and I think that’s wonderful. Taking that journey with my gods and my spirits and my beliefs is exciting and new, as long as I get to do it my way. And I hope with this blog, I’ll be able to help others find what works for them while still sharing what works for me.

So let’s stop bitchin’ and get to witchin’, my little fools.

– Val

©Valfreyja 2019

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