Memories Of A Witch
Author: Lady Abigail
It had been a peculiar and strange-feeling day. Not just that it was particularly hot and muggy even for January in Texas, but the entire day I had felt strangely aware, like waiting for someone to jump out of the bushes and yell, “Boo!” I kept hearing my name being spoken, as if someone was calling me from a long distance away. Just the echoes of voices and sounds I had not heard for some time.
All through the day I kept ignoring the inner voices I had been taught as a child to respect. Of course I recognized the signs and foretellings all around me, but refused to pay them heed. At this time in my life I was trying to play my role according to the narrow minded rules placed down by others. I wanted to be what everyone believed I should be. I would be the perfect wife and mom. I attended all the PTA meetings; I was the soccer, baseball, and football mom, as well as the Cub Scout and Brownie leader. I wanted to be the ideal wife – cleaning, cooking, and looking, or acting, perfect. I was trying to be the 1980s rendition of June Cleaver. I behaved outwardly only how those around me expected me to behave.
I was absolutely, completely, and unquestionably the most wretchedly miserable and secretly unhappy person on earth.
That night, I put the children into bed and tidied up the house for the next fun-filled day. I had tried to keep myself as busy as possible all day long. I did not want to deal with this, with anything that would make me less than normal. You had to be normal to be perfect, right? I was not going to allow myself to even think about what was going on around me. Still I could not rid myself of the uncomfortable séance.
I made myself a cup of herbal tea from some of the many herbs I kept hidden in a wood box in my bedroom. I turned on some soft music and set alight a pale blue candle. I wasn’t working magick, of course. I didn’t do that. That wouldn’t be normal. I was just going to try to relax, the best way I knew how.
After some time of, not meditation, but just emptying the thoughts of the day, I decided I could go to bed. The truth was, I had trouble quieting the voices in my head so I could sleep. I also knew all it would have taken to quiet them was to hear them, but I couldn’t allow that. That wasn’t normal and I was going to be perfectly normal, because that was the way it had to be. Normal.
Soon, I had entered a less-than-restful sleep. My mind was racing within the many images of my life and people. My past, my present and the future. A future that was lost within darkness, void of truth. I had to look deep to recognize who and what I was within that future. I didn’t like what I saw. It caused me such overwhelming grief that I sat up in my bed as I felt tears running down my face.
I wiped the tears from my eyes and looked over toward the alarm clock to see what time it was. Standing at the end of the bed was my Great Grandmother. I was not frightened, or in shock; my Great Grandmother had visited me many times within my dreams and thoughts. But this time was different; she didn’t look the same. She had a translucent glow all around her; I had never seen that before. She reached out and placed her hand in my hand as she told me she would soon be crossing the veil into the worlds unseen by most. I remember thinking, “NO! I will not accept this.” Not that I was having a conversation with my Great Grandmother, but that she was going to leave me. She was going to die. Then, as if she were looking into my very soul, she said in a gentle but firm voice, “I will always be with you. But you must learn to see and be open to hear.” She smiled and I could feel her love touch me. As I reached for her, she was gone. It would be a while before I would understand all that was going to mean in my life
The next day, I went about my life as normally as possible. I only allowed my mind to flash across the events of the night. If I didn’t think about it, didn’t accept it, then it would pass and only be a very bad dream. Other people had dreams that meant nothing and this was going to be one of those times for me as well.
I think it was about six o’clock that next evening when the phone rang. It was already dark outside and a cool breeze was blowing through the curtains over the kitchen sink. I think I must have jumped from the ringing because I hit a glass on the kitchen counter and knocked it onto the floor, where it shattered. My husband answered the phone and I could hear him talking to someone. “Yes, I understand. I will tell her. Thank you.” I heard the phone as he hung it back up and I sank onto the floor and began to pick up the broken pieces of glass.
It seemed very quiet at that moment. I could hear my heart beating along with my husband’s footsteps across the wooden floor. I don’t know why, when he stopped walking, my heart didn’t stop beating. I don’t remember what words were spoken as he explained the phone call. I was busy picking up the broken glass from the floor. I didn’t want the kids to get cut. I cleaned the floor of the broken glass, then the kitchen table, then the dishes, then, while standing staring into the darkness of the night, I saw my reflection in the window glass above the kitchen sink. I didn’t recognize who I was. I was only an image of who others wanted to see. I had lost my Great Grandmother, my best friend, and my teacher. I would be dammed if I was going to lose anything else, including myself.
I don’t think I even tried to go to bed that night. I remember being curled up on the couch. I watched each star as it slowly crossed the sky above our house. Then, the gentle glow of the morning sun quietly pulled the stars from the sky and it was a new day. It was a new day of new beginnings. I had made some decisions in my life. None of them were going to be easily executed or be quick fixes. I had made some selfish mistakes, taken some of what I believed were easy outs. Sure, it was because of how others wanted me to behave or act or be, but the truth is, I was wrong not to just be who I was meant to be. I was no longer going to wear the mask I had allowed society to place on me. I was embarking on a new beginning for myself. I recognized I might lose the so-called normal, whatever that was.
My Great Grandmother was a Witch, one of the wise ones. She never considered herself as being born a Witch, or that she had came from so many generations of Witches that the number was simply unknown; magick was just part of her and it was her life. She was a strong and kind soul of many lives. She was of mixed traditions: Native American, French, Southern, and Cajun, to name a few. She was raised in a time when those who could not believe, would try to stop the powers they feared, a time when, with heart and love, anything was possible within the forces of the Earth and Nature.
She was born into a world that was beginning to forget the wonders hidden within every element of nature. A world that scoffed and made fun of those who were different and those of the Old World. At times, it could be a very dangerous world for those born of magick, because such things were considered wrong and somehow evil. What some would, in fear and ignorance, call sinful.
She knew potions and charms, how to heal the sick with herbs and soothe a broken heart with a cup of tea sweetened with a listening heart. She could see what others could not see, or would not see.
For most of my life, I would be with my Great Grandmother. She was the one who raised me and the one who loved me. Her face was careworn from years of life and could only give a glimpse of the knowledge she held from worlds long since past. She was a small gentle woman with long, thick, silver-gray hair which she kept wrapped into a French knot on her head. When she passed, her hair was still better than waist length. My Great Grandmother could most often be seen wearing a long skirt covered with a crisp, clean, white apron. She wore a bonnet whenever she worked outdoors in the sun and was truly from another time.
My Great Grandmother taught me to trust my intuitions, that first impression or feeling you receive from the powers within all things and yourself. She taught me to watch the signs of nature, to see beyond what others see, and trust my own heart, even when others would ridicule.
But there was a time that I closed my eyes to all of this. Knowing the truth, I still decided that I was just going to be like everyone else. Nothing special. Normal. What a shame, I missed so much time lost in trying to be something I was not. It took my Great Grandmother’s passing to remind me of who and what I was. I always knew, but I tried to hide, tried to forget the ageless knowledge I had been taught to understand. And, a part of me always knew, that never works. I’m sure the saying, “To thine own self be true” must have been said first by a Witch.
My Great Grandmother was respectfully called Mamma Fields, by those who knew and loved her. Occasionally, when someone was visiting or passing through, they would call her Mrs. Fields. That was a sure sign they were not from our area or were looking for the Wise Woman for some kind of help or healing.
She was born in the month of August. I believe on the 28th. To the best of anyone’s knowledge, in the year of our Lady, 1890. Yet, some say she may have been a few years older. She passed from within this world in January of 1983, at the age of ninety-three years. Ninety-three being the best guess anyone could get out of her. My Great Grandmother believed that age is within you and should never be ruled by what others think they may see on the outside.
My Great Grandmother raised me as a Witch. Although, for a while, I would pull away from the truth of who and what I was. She always knew I would, in time, stand true to my ancestry. The Ancestry of Magick. The spells, incantations, herbs, and physical reality of magick only being a thread of its true subsistence. My Great Grandmother would explain the powers and knowledge of magick. It is well beyond any form from which the seen powers of magick flow. You must first embark on the understanding that you are not only a part, you are the whole. Then you can see that no matter what, you are now where you should be, seeking within the world of Magick.
Magick is the subtle enchantment that reminds you not to waste a single moment of this gift that we call life. Magick has no regret, for we learn from every moment we live, even the mistakes. Magick is not the power you seek, but the presence of heart. Magick is remembering who you are in this life. Sometimes it is finding again your connection to all within the universe. Magick is the knowing and understanding. Magick is real and within every breath we take. Magick is the balance of life and knowing that you are a part of that vital force. Magick is laughter, joy, and wonder found within the world. Magick exists, it is truth, and it works. Magick is the mystery that lies hidden deep within your secret soul. Magick is all that we can imagine. It is the essence of creation.
Magick is like the air: you need not see it to know it is real. Magick does not care if anyone else believes. Magick needs no proof. Magick just is…
I write this in love and dedication to my Great Grandmother, who allowed me to find my way. Even when I stumbled through the dark, knowing the light of her love would safely guide me home.
There are times that we are like angry children, crying because we have broken our favorite toys. Surrounded by our unhappiness, kicking our feet we scream, “Fix it! Fix it! Fix it!” as we tightly grasp the broken pieces of our lives and demand they be immediately repaired.
Then, like a soothing melody coming from the voice of love, we hear, “My children, how may I fix this and put the pieces back together if you will not completely let them go?”
For as long as you hold onto the disappointments within your life, you can never truly heal your spirit and be free of them.
Works of a Wise Witch, my Great Grandmother who lived and lives on: 1890-1983.