Tonight I celebrated Beltane in a circle with women. We all wore red and danced barefoot on rose petals. Seriously. Tonight is exactly between equinox, the time of earth balance, and summer solstice, the longest day of the year. It's the beginning of the light half of the year. The trees are blooming, the flowers are lush and vibrant, the soil is fragrant...May is my favorite month. I never had a way to explain it, but every year growing up, I could feel my spirits lift in May. I have more energy, more laughter, more literal lightness in my being. Every year is the same. I thrive in the light half of the year.
This ritual sharing has become so meaningful to me. Maybe because Mom's diagnosis came at winter solstice and her birthday at Imbolc, but I've come to view these magic days as times to take pause and reassess. Gary and I had originally set our wedding date as July 31st, in honor of Lammas, the time of year between summer solstice and autumnal equinox, the time of year for abundance. When we decided to move the wedding up, I knew I wanted it to be another magical time of year, so we got married as close to the vernal equinox as we could pull off.
And now here we are with another turning of the wheel. Honoring the time of year that celebrates love, rebirth and renewal. Perfect for settling into my marriage. Perfect for traveling to Seattle for Mother's Day. Perfect for recounting crazy hippie stories to Mom about my evening. She's tired of telling her same old story. She's tired of being sick. She wishes she could have one whole day of feeling well. Hearing me tell her that I'm scattering rose petals on my Brooklyn sidewalk in honor of May Day transports her, at least for a moment. She can marvel at what a weirdo kid she raised, she can imagine a yoga studio in the East Village full of ladies dancing and laughing, she can learn a little bit about pagan rituals. And she can know that I asked all of these powerful women for healing blessings, and that now her story has spread even farther, touched even more people and invoked even more prayer, in all it's forms.