“Anybody else got their title?”
I dream of reciting a TED talk one day, in front of hundreds of people. Right now at the writing seminar Bestseller in a Weekend, my heart is hammering against my chest in front of thirty attendants. Breathe. Just do it. Fake it to make it.
I raise my hand. “I do.” Everybody's eyes are on me. “It’s called from grumpy bitch to happy witch.”
Applause and laughter?? I'm thrilled. They could have hated but everybody loved it. Every one of my cells is happily buzzing; I sit taller. Little things can make me feel good fast and approval from 30 women trumps the empowering feeling of my cowgirl boots, my favorite tough girl tool by far.
In the afternoon during a break I listen to a social diva’s power stories. She uses trends and keywords to hammer out “banal gossip’ as she calls it with a bright grin. The "crap" is just a lure because she follows up with "valuable provocative" blog posts. I adore her wild enthusiasm; she’s like a content siren on crack. Her drug of choice is likes, millions and millions of likes. In fact, and I don’t even know if I should laugh or cry, her last post got 40 million hits. I’d be thrilled if I’d reach 400. Suffocation alert. Will I ever…?
She looks at me for a moment. Eyes squinted. Critical.
“So, ARE you a witch, bitch?"
“Not really, not in the sense of spells and herbs and…”
“You shouldn’t use that name then," she interrupts my apologetic rambling,” the masses will stone you…”
I retreat to my seat like a punished puppy. Throwing stones? She didn’t like me. She didn’t like my title. The title was bad. She would know, I mean she has 40 Million hits. Not so cool how little things can make me feel so insecure so fast.
Witch and bitch? What was I thinking? I’m not really a bitch either. I’m much too nice for that. That’s it. I toss the title. It’s not me.
In the following hours of the workshop we do an exercise I can only recommend to anybody with a story they yearn to tell but don’t know yet how: Make up questions to your main ideas/chapters and let somebody else ask them. When you answer, things get clearer and when you transcribe the recorded interview you have ideas, even a basic structure for your book.
I switch my focus to “Sorceress in a spacesuit.” The title is so much easier, there’s no resistance here. It’s cool to be mysterious like a sorceress and futuristically spaced out in a space suit. Why do I feel so blah then?
Next morning back at home I take a series of supplements; my shelf is packed with pills, potions and healing drops enhancing longevity maybe I'll even make it to eternity. I light a candle and write my morning pages. I doodle in my planner, which is like a mini meditation, chose my mantra and goals for the day; I frame my day before it can frame me. I promise my inner self to trust her and ask her to show me what I don’t see.
10 hours later.
I had a pretty good day. I worked on my website, walked my dog mindfully without my cell phone, went to a yoga class. I convinced myself that I needed to be patient about the book thing.
Before I went to bed I proclaimed a couple of my favorite affirmations, those I actually believe in. Loud for a change, I had to make sure somebody heard me. My dog Nikita, a Tibetan Terrier looks at me. Are you talking to me? She often gets me and spooks me doing things before I ask her to, like reading me or on a telepathic connection. I just totally confused her shouting at the Universe.
I sit down on the black fuzzy carpet, which she claimed as hers and give her a hug. She has these huge brown eyes, which seem so sad sometimes. I got her from a shelter; does she remember her abuse in the first year of her life? She licks my face. If I would know the people who hurt her, I’d curse them and have their tires pop or break the hands that hit her. I’d make them never hurt a dog again.
I shouldn't wish bad things for people, I can be such a bitch.
Situations rush by my eyes: I really hadn’t been THAT nice all my life, I was disappointed and angry, driven and ambitious and reacted bitchy, at least my boyfriends told me so and a few of my business competitors... Jeez, sorry!
I burn sage to clear the space from my blaming and shaming thoughts. My reality disappears into white smoky clouds.
The earthy fragrance brings me back to the magic of smudging Native American sun dancers at a 5-day celebration in Oregon’s wilderness. I distributed the smoke with the amazing eagle’s feather I was awarded by the Elders and then added it to the altar I had created for connecting with my soul and soul sisters.
It hit me; I didn’t need to own a cauldron and a witchy book of shadows or dabble in spells.
Pouring three drops of chocolate rose healing perfume on my wrists I got to own it; I practiced my very own kind of magic. I believed in the power of nature, that food is medicine and that there is more to life than a body’s rise and decay. I felt at home with the forever-young witches of movies. I didn’t bathe in brews of dragon blood but took about 40 vitality-preserving pills every day.
My potions are pills, my spells are mantras, and like many of the ancient witches I dream of eternal life and beauty.
I wear silver feathers on my bracelet and sometimes hold one of the shiny stones on my desk in my hand, they say: freedom and abundance. For a while I carried around a little power object pouch, which a friend had made for me. It reminded me not to react when the judgmental boss went into her tirades or the evil landlord knocked at the door. I use power objects like my cowgirl boots, which make me feel strong or let my double espresso in the morning spark my creativity.
My mind is my magic wand; I had gotten rid of toxic ideas and people and on my warrioress journey I was turning limiting beliefs into powers.
Thank you girl with 40 Million likes for slamming my title. You made me fess up to my good, my bad and my magical. I fell asleep with a smile, yeah, I was a bitch but I am also a modern witch. Life is good.
My book is called "Who wants to be normal."