Ceasefire. Treaty. Truth
AUTHOR | WINTER JADE ICELY
As we approach the longest night of year, the Winter Solstice, and my fortieth year circumnavigating the sun, I have been journeying with themes of armistice, of laying down my sword and surrendering my combat with this world.
I came in fighting. Kicking and screaming with the obstetrician and his forceps. Landing in this world as a child I felt the wounds of patriarchy in my body, I felt the ancestral abuse of my female lineage as if they were my own. I had no understanding or context as a child to what I was feeling, I know it now to be the pain and suffering of women, of my ancestors and on a deeper level the oppression and denial of the goddess, of the divine feminine.
As a young woman I was livid. I denied any authority that was not my own (I still do). I was angry with men, with the masculine and societal conditioning that dictated how one should act, live, be. I could taste, feel and smell the sickly cloak of oppression that shamed my blood, my body and the intuitive wisdom that came naturally to me. I lived recklessly, in defiance, daring someone, something to challenge me. I wanted the fight.
A wise sister shared a vision she recently had of me, of walking through moors, wandering with a sword, the sky darkened and grim, above me ravens watched my descent into the muck, into the underbelly of the world, the swamps of humanity. I was poised for battle.
I have been reading about Matilda of Tuscany, a powerful woman who ruled northern Italy in 1046 and her story spoke to a very deep part of me. She too was a fighter, an activist and a woman, she carried a sword at a time when women were voiceless. I have been enamoured with her, feeling her blood in my veins.
I have walked through life in battle for many lifetimes, some of which I have seen in dreaming states, others are just a feeling. It is so entrenched in my way of being it has become the only way I know how to be and yet here I am, holding a singed scroll calling for truce. The skirmish does not serve me anymore, instead it isolates me and keeps me on guard, as I scan people and situations. It also shows up as not being able to lean onto another or open in vulnerability; it has led me to believe that I must endure and hold everything on my own, I am the strongest person in my world.
In putting down my sword, the feeling that emerges is death, for if I am not armed and poised, I must be truly helpless. On the recent full moon I made a fire and got down on one knee, in my hands I held a wand that I crafted many years ago, and to the fire I offered my surrender as I placed the wand into the fuming blaze. I capitulated.
I don’t know what comes next.
I am waiting.
Waiting to see what will emerge now as I continue to energetically sift through my warfare, slowly unbuckling my belt of artillery. Occasionally I find myself braced to pick up a weapon, something makes my blood boil and I see myself trudging back through the swampy moors. In the meantime I am yielding to softness, like a child I am learning to walk again, a little more peacefully. No longer a hurricane with a machete, I am instead edging more towards a strong breeze and a flogger.