Well, my intention was to not go three or four days without a post, but unfortunately this weekend caught up with me. Migraine, a day of shopping with the Imp's Grumps (and me on the warpath for a new mobile...I still have to have a bit of patience, but got loads of information), and a fantastic day out at the seaside. I ended up too wiped to think properly. That doesn't say that ideas haven't been floating around, including a bit of brainstorming for my guest post for Angela at The Pagan Mom Blog, which I am really looking forward to working on this week.
On Friday, the Imp actually truly inspired me. Not too bad for a 3 1/2 year old. We had to spend Friday afternoon at the hospital, for her (currently) 6 monthly chat with the paediatric allergist, who's trying to decide whether she's coeliac or wheat/gluten intolerant. When it came time for her to go down to the ward for her blood draw, it took them over ten minutes to get anything from her. And she didn't cry, flinch, or whine. She took it in her stride in a way that most adults couldn't, with only the occasional frustrated 'ouch' under her breath. All for the promise of a piece of cake when we met up with her Gran...she ended up with a huge piece of chocolate cake all to herself that she managed through all but a third of.
It makes me think of the spirits that are near her. Those that are guiding her, those that protect her, and those that she just chatters to in general. To be honest, it started whilst she was in the womb, with the spirit of my grandmother, her namesake. Occasionally I'd drift to memories of walking hand in hand with my grandmother through a shop, and the way that I would try to imitate her stride at the age of four. I'd slip back to my purpose of walking down the path to the car, to find that I'd be walking in the same manner again. Granted, I had a fair limp from carrying the Imp, but it wasn't just a random memory that struck me. It was a regular one. After her birth, my friends and I have regularly caught something in the corner of our eye, looking over her. When she became mobile, she'd regularly go to a certain spot behind a curtain (no matter where she was. And she still does it.), and would spend at least 10 to 20 minutes intently conversing. On Friday, it was almost like there was somebody else there that she was listening to, to shut out her discomfort. On Sunday, she was in the back seat of the car, having a full-fledged conversation with somebody, that included the appropriate pauses, and hand actions. We couldn't hear or understand a word she was saying, but she was animated and it carried on for about 20 minutes.
I think it used to be just my grandmother, but I think she's now starting to gain other friends, and possibly starting to attract her first spirit teachers and guides. She has recently had a huge breakthrough in her language and vocabulary, and with that she seems to be more relaxed, independent, and attentive. She's now starting to say some rather insightful things, and I think that there were guides waiting for her to reach that maturity.
I have my spirit friends and guides, as well. My grandmother has been there when I've been at my loneliest and needed comforting. My gryphon is around a lot, representing when I need strength, intelligence, and cunning. There are others, as well. Some are a permanent presence, some are just there for a temporary message or just a visit. We all have them, it's just whether or not we chose to acknowledge them. It could be a child's imaginary friend, a guardian angel, an ancestor just checking that you're doing ok, or just a curious passing spirit. They can be a positive, neutral, or negative influence, though most of us are most likely to attract the positive or neutral. Dependent on your convictions and beliefs, the negative can be sent on their way.
In the past, parents have worried over their children having imaginary friends, thinking that they needed to get rid of that part of their childhood to interact more with the solid world. That's not something that I agree with. I feel that my daughter needs her spirit friends and guides. As she grows up, I can't always be there physically. But her great grandmother can be. Well, not physically, but her spirit can be there to comfort her, as well as those others that she can feel comfortable to talk to. It's an unfortunate thing that modern children are forced to grow up so quickly, that they're not allowed to keep the innocence of their childhood. "Forget and ignore your imaginary friend, it's time to be mature and grow up". I don't agree with that, because I believe that those spirits are there to help them grow up at the right pace, and to learn balance and peace.
Our far ancestors, the ones still living the tribal lives, honoured their deities and ancestral spirits on a daily basis. They actually encouraged them to be there to guide and protect them. Now, people are so wrapped up in themselves, they forget about those spirits to struggle on their own, when stopping for just a moment to 'ask for help' in your own way, and acknowledging your spirits could make the burden of your life easier.