I’m pagan – an ordained Druid priest – and that comes with some responsibilities. One of those is that I host a high day celebration for the 8 holidays on the Wheel of the Year in some fashion or other, within a week of their calendar dates. (Feb 1, Mar 23, May 1, June 21, Aug 1, Sept 23, Nov 1, Dec 21 – give or take)
I have done this, first alone, and then with a study group, and then with the grove I founded, and then with friends, and now with a new protogrove, every six weeks, since something like 2004 or 2005? A long time.
Alone, things aren’t so bad! You do your thing, with the energy you have, at the engagement level you are capable of. Over time, the responsibilities grow, but you kind of grow into them, and that’s fine.
When you’re leading things for other people though, it gets complicated. No longer are you able to say “you know what, I don’t got it today” – there’s other folks relying on you to have your shit together, to make sure the fire is lit and the ritual is ready. To get the space prepared and to make sure there’s offerings or cakes and ale or whatever else.
Normally that’s fine, I deeply enjoy that work, and I look forward to it. But it’s always tiring.
This is a story of how I am sometimes extremely stupid.
Yesterday was August 1 – Lammas, the First Harvest, the Festival of Loaves. I have a HUGE personal responsibility that day, from a religious observation sense. I also had a D&D game with the Pan Flute folks, a house to clean, errands to run, a family to feed, and then a ritual I was hosting for Blue Heron at my house.
So I chugged right along into it, burned myself totally out by 5pm, and then had to like… find the energy somewhere in my toenails to make the evening stuff happen for Blue Heron.
That was my first mistake.
My second mistake, equally as dumb, was the part where I’ve regularly scheduled our Blue Heron high day celebrations to be on Sunday evenings. I’d do Fridays, but half the folks I want to show up can’t do Fridays (or couldn’t when we talked about it). Saturdays I’m already booked 3 out of 4 weekends. So that leaves Sunday. No big deal, right?
One of the many reasons that, in my career as a priest, I have chosen not to do ritual work on work nights is that afterward, when everything is done and cleaned up, I am *awake* and if I’m lucky I’ll fall asleep by 2am. And the next day, I’ll be a vegetable. Last night was no exception. I finally passed out around midnight-thirty.
The alarm went off at 6am.
Pardon me, I’m going to nap at my desk now.
And one of these days, maybe I’ll stop making rookie mistakes.