I had a dream about my ex last night. Don’t like when that happens, because there a lot of bad memories associated with our time together. He was not a good guy. Anyway. I had a thought this morning: he wasn’t comfortable with an empowered woman. Because of his parents’ odd ideas about stuff, he had very little personal interaction with the outside world. I think this is one reason he was so close to his mother – she was his whole world. She was smart and capable, but her husband treated her with tender subservience. He meant well, but he treated her like an incompetent child (he treated most everyone else that way, particularly if they weren’t white males). So my ex treated her that way as well. I believe she was once a fiery person who wouldn’t have put up with that, but years of familiarity had left her believing the men and second-guessing herself. Then I came into the picture. I upset the balance and brought new ideas. My ex’s mom and I bonded together and she was no longer the only female. She seemed happier; we became fast friends and chatted all the time. She liked my spunk and new ideas, and together we made plans and pushed forward for change (nothing drastic). The men did not like what was happening… not at all.
Enter into the story my discovery of Paganism. I started reading up on what Paganism was, talked about it with my ex – he thought it was cool and encouraged me to pursue it further. I began using Tarot cards (they were his) almost daily. He bought me books and incense. I grew more and more excited about my new path – I had found what my heart needed. Paganism, as you may know, is arguably the most empowering religion a woman may become involved in. I found that empowerment and embraced it. The happier and more confident I grew, though, the more nervous and nit-picky he became. Eventually he told me my Pagnism was scary and that I should stop. He took back his Tarot cards and sold a video game I had been playing that had elements of Paganism in it. It all came very unexpectedly and was very hurtful, but I did as he wished and abandoned the pursuit of Paganism. About a month later we split up and never saw each other again. His mother knew what was happening, knew her son was throwing away the relationship, and spent several mornings sorrowfully telling me how sorry she was about the whole thing. She told me that, even if he had the moon, her son would never be happy with it. Once I had been gone a few weeks, though, she changed her tune (convinced by her dominating menfolk, no doubt) and began blaming me for everything that had gone wrong, even pointing to my interest in Paganism as proof of my fault. I was hurt and upset, but I mostly felt sorry for her. I made my escape, but she would never make hers.
Now, here I am embracing Paganism and finding that excitement I once had… with the full support of my partner. The more empowered I become the more his love for me grows. He’s not afraid of me and my path. For this I am deeply thankful. He and I have both seen how patriarchy degrades women, and we both know it’s not right. Women are not lesser beings, weak, subservient, or any number of things patriarchy says. Women have the power to grow, carry, and bring forth new life into the world. Women have the power of the Goddess, the power of the Moon. Embrace the power – speak beautifully of it – but do not fear it.