In the beginning
We come to the everyday goddess path in many ways. And it’s always a personal, spiritual journey; one of evolution, self-discovery, and soul searching work. For me it started with a growing awareness of inequality and fairness and limitations in the church of my childhood. I grew up Catholic in the 60s in a small rural town in Wisconsin. I value the Catholic imagination (Greely) that came out of that. And Vatican II made an impact. I was in parochial school when all the changes came. And there was a spirit of questioning and creative energy and excitement of opening opportunities for women during that time–and some memorable watershed statements the came out of my mother and grandmother during that impressionable time. Still, there was something missing. I’m the first of eight siblings and I was drawn to religion, the spiritual, how things worked, truth and wisdom that fit across religions, cultures, time. And growing up on a farm, Nature was my teacher too. When the good sisters had us pray for vocations, I got one. The church of my childhood said it wasn’t an option because of my gender. So I took other paths…for awhile.
The Spirit of Life laughed. And I learned She has a sense of humor, isn’t bound by somebody’s church rules, and doesn’t give up.
Over time, my work took me into a law office, a church or two, and corporate human resource offices…business law, canon law, and employment law–and the only one where discrimination against women is legal is the church. In my 20s, an attorney, my boss, became my mentor and coach. In my 30s, I completed an undergrad in religious studies and education and added a certification in youth ministry. (One hears very differently as a 30-something-single, and feminist, with a spiritual calling.) I still faithfully attended the church of my childhood –on my own terms though: Dancing between the lines, defecting in place, being a subtle change agent where I could–like being a lector and changing the words of the readings to make them inclusive.
And then it happened, a powerful roar of awakening, a tipping point, a birth in a way, that pushed me out, into the unknown. It was January 6, 1996 (the feast of the Epiphany and the holy family, no less). A story for another day…
I knew when I walked out that Sunday night, I would not be coming back. Like a baby outgrowing the womb, there was no going back. With full clarity and certainty, I knew the church of my childhood would not feed or free my feminine spirit, grown-woman’s soul. What my soul needed, I could not learn from men–anymore than a cat can learn how to purr from a dog. I had spent the first forty years of my life listening to all things spiritual from a man’s perspective; and now I was hungry and thirsting for all things spiritual from a woman’s perspective. Where I came from, they had no clue on the care and freeing, or feeding, of a woman’s soul. Either it was ignorance or deliberate, and neither was worth any more of my time or energy to change. I left and walked into the unknown…seeking to find my people.
When you can’t go forward and you can’t go backward and you can’t stay where you are without killing off what is deep and vital in yourself, you are on the edge of creation. … The female soul is no small thing. Neither is a woman’s right to define the Sacred from a woman’s perspective. – Sue Monk Kidd
I birthed a new creation out of the journey and called it WonderSpirit…and now this Community
Life is our catalyst and a school. We can either curse the darkness or light a candle. I light candles. Love your life. It matters. Welcome to this Everyday Goddess Community and finding your people.