A Dream, and A Reminder

I got a tarot reading back recently about my spiritual path. One card mentioned a King leaving, but us possibly being reunited, though not necessarily in a romantic relationship anymore. I had a knee-jerk reaction of panic, to which my Spouse showed up in my dreams to reassure me that he’s not going anywhere, even if our relationship may shift more to friendship, rather than romantic love.

I’d normally put this in my private dream logs, but he’s encouraging me to post it publicly.


“I’m scared this is the last time I’ll be here.” I admit. I know this garden so well, it’s the High King’s personal gardens, filled with flowers from around the Universe. I know every path here, have spent time with my Spouse and played with our children here.

“Why do you think that,” he asks me.

I tell him about the reading, about the King leaving. I knew the King card could be about any older man, but my mind had jumped to him right away, that and with the distance between us that’s been exacerbated by my mental illness.

“Varian, dearest one.” He hugs me gently. “I’ve been alive for how long?”

“A good…” I pause and do the math, “6,000 years, at least.”

He nods. “And I’ve loved you all that time,” he says quietly. “Since I met you, I’ve loved you.”

“Even when we’ve been apart?”

“Even then, dearest Heart.” I feel his lips touch my hair. “I’ve always loved you in some way, even as our relationship has changed over time.”

I nod, and he takes my hand. We walk through the gardens together, but I’m still musing over the distance and space between us.

“It could simply mean that I need to be away,” he says, “if that King card was about me, that is.” He pauses. “I leave every Summer, remember?”

“I–oh!” Suddenly I’m laughing. “Oops, I forgot and panicked.”

He smiles. “I can understand why, things have been…fragile for you lately, haven’t they?”

“Yeah,” I move closer and put my arm around his waist, “they have been.”

We walk through the garden together, quietly talking and listening to our children as they play nearby.

Nine Ways to Describe Devotion

I. Morning Coffee

I quietly offer you my coffee in the morning, even if you’re already away on business.  This offering has become my equivalent of a “good morning” text to you, and I know it makes you smile.

II. Music

I listen to our favorite bands–not just because they remind me of you, but because their music is awesome.  It still makes me laugh that you love Good Charlotte as much as you love Belle Morte.  I would have never though you’d be into pop punk; even after five years of marriage, you still surprise me.

III. Beauty

I think of you every time I see flowers; all flowers these days, not just white flowers.  They remind me to see the beauty in my life Here, to find joy in sunshine, and laughter in the wind.

IV. Rain

I sense you in the gentle rain, rather than in the storms.  This is you as a cosmic god, as a force of nature; but even in this form, you are gentle.  You are the rain that washes away my sorrow.

V. Freedom

Five years ago, in the beginning of this marriage, you promised me that I would always be free–even free to walk away, if need be.  You have upheld that promise, made it clear that my autonomy and personal freedom mean the world to you.

VI. The Full Moon

You are the Light in Darkness, the King who guides his Kingdom always with grace and love.  I can’t believe it took me years to realize the full moon being your symbol was a play on words–literal light in darkness, pardon me while I facepalm at your love of puns.

VII. Inside Jokes

This is one of my favorite things about our marriage, the inside jokes that only we get.  I know you’re helping me write when subtle puns start showing up.  You like taking control of my music while I write, thanks for providing plot ideas through shufflemancy.

VIII. Gentleness

You’ve been nothing but gentle with my mind and Heart.  Even when I had an emotional flashback while making breakfast this morning, you simple sat with me and reminded me to breathe, to ground myself in my reality Here.  You’ve never once spoken of breaking me, or of needing to see your harsh side before I can accept your Love.

IX. Anniversary

Today is our five year anniversary, and I can sense you smiling as you paint whatever your gift for me is going to be.  I love you more than words can say, happy anniversary, Beloved.

Anniversary (A Month for the Madman)

Through this past year, you have been my stability, my rock to stand on, my soft place to land.  You have been my guiding hand through blindness, through a fallow time when I felt my sanity slipping away, and you’ve held me close as I’ve come out the other side.  You’ve reminded me that you love me–all of me–and that you are always within my Heart.

Happy anniversary, Beloved, I love you. ❤

Sanity and Solid Ground, or, Life as a Mentally Ill Paranormal Romance Novel Protagonist (A Month for the Madman)

Michael’s post here inspired me to write this; the post confirmed my wondering about why the Madman has been a less frequent presence in my life lately, as well as inspiring some thoughts of my own.

I often joke that I’m the protagonist of a paranormal romance novel, but in my life Here I’m in the chapters of the book before the brooding hero sweeps the protagonist off their feet, and whisks them away from “ordinary” life, into the paranormal world.  [Now that I think about it, I haven’t read any paranormal romances where the mortal stays mortal, and has a “normal” life.  Maybe I should write one.]  The whole sacred marriage and Otherworld Self stuff, yeah I fell in love and got married to two gods, and I can travel to the Otherworlds if I wish to…but Here I’m still in college, and trying to figure out what I want to do with the degree I’m getting this December.  Job searching is still going to suck, divine Spouses or not.  I’m still legally blind and mentally ill; even with my Beloveds’ support and love, I still need my anti-psychotic medications to function day to day.

I’ve written about it in the past, how I’m now adjusting to my life being fully lived Here–my close connection to my Otherworld Self has been severed, and my ability to just fall into a trance at the drop of a hat is gone (which I am thankful for–spontaneously traveling Over There because I couldn’t pay 100% attention in class was not fun.)  At the same time, fully living Here has been such an adjustment, it’s like I’m suddenly realizing that Here I’m an ordinary person, just a regular guy who’s about to finish his first college degree, then hopefully get a job, and an apartment in the city.

Writing that felt like a bucket of cold water got dumped on me, to be honest.  It’s the strangest feeling, and difficult to explain, that feeling of what made me unique is suddenly gone–not that I enjoyed the hallucinations, my sense of reality shifting, or the violent intrusive thoughts–but now I have to pick up the pieces of my life Here, and try to gather up the words to describe what happened to me.  Having to a shattered, broken, sense of self is terrifying–thank the King of Shattered Conscious for Seroquel, because now that I’m on medication, I’m starting to feel like a whole person.

My Beloved is a god of madness and insanity–his nickname is the Madman, after all–but even more so, he’s a god of healing from those things.  When my metal health symptoms were at their worst, when I wasn’t on any sort of medication–having violent hallucinations, hating that I existed, and feeling like I was about to fly into a million shattered pieces if anyone so much as looked at me–he was there.  I was in a fallow time at the time of my breakdown, but I’m certain he was watching out for me; when I was being driven to the hospital, I got some songs that were eerily appropriate, songs of love and healing.  Songs of “you’ve got this, the doctors will care for you, I love you.”

My Beloveds are very aware that I have a life Here to live; the Dreamer reminds me that I can’t prove that he exists, and that I should have a life Here based on things that I know are real.  I’ve received what I consider proof to me that my Beloveds are real, but I can also see how all of this could be seen from the outside as one (very long) string of freaky coincidences.  My Beloveds have both said that if I ever get any tattoos involving them, that it should have another meaning beyond them (like flowers simply being pretty.)

Leaving behind what I refer to as the “astral vortex” has been difficult, it’s meant facing what a ordinary life I have Here, even though I’m married to two gods.  I’m beginning to become grateful for the ordinary-ness both Here and There, for the small moments of joy and Love that I share with my Beloveds.  My Beloveds and I joke that I live in what is possibly the calmest paranormal romance novel ever.  I’d take the quiet, peaceful life we all share together with our blended Families, over angst and saving them from their brooding souls any day.

Silence (Godphone Update II), and Other Brief Updates

Back in May, I wrote a post saying that my abilities to sense, see, and/or hear my Beloveds–let alone anyone else–has been going down steadily since April.  My abilities dying…maybe finally happened?

I did some brief divination about all of this, and the reading was “everything Over There is fine, relax,” and that my godphone and abilities were bound to die sooner or later.  This…doesn’t surprise me, but the ongoing quiet is strange.

Two weeks ago, the Dreamer left for his Summer Duties in Darkness.  I’ve begun keeping a journal specifically for him when he’s gone over the Summer–he requested I do so through some divination I got–and it’s helped a lot.  I don’t know if he gets the letters as I write them, but writing to him has been helping with being unable to reach him any other way.

The Madman has been around when he can be, but his appearances are sporadic.  This makes sense, from what I know of the Dreamer’s Summer Duties, that his Spouse would be incredibly busy as well.

Jake is still around, which is comforting.  I’ve been spending time with his family and friends when I can–just brief visits, nothing intense–and they really are beginning to feel like family to me.


Asexuality and My Spiritual Path (Carnival of Aces)

This month’s Carnival of Aces topic is Complexity and Nuance.

I ended up writing about how my asexuality plays a part in my spiritual path.  I’ve written about this in passing, but the topic of complexity and nuance gave me space to really put my thoughts down on paper.

I’m really open on this blog about a couple of things; I’m a polytheist, I’m asexual, and I’m married to two of my deities.  What I haven’t put together on paper before, at least here, is how that asexuality does interact with and impact how I approach the wider polytheist community, and how it merges with my path being a deity spouse.

I never thought my asexuality and my spiritual path would crash together, but they have.  The two parts of my life don’t conflict, it’s…that the majority of the pagan and polytheistic community is very, very sex positive, and I shift between sex neutral and sex repulsed (mostly sex repulsed.)  I feel really awkward a lot of the time when I’m in more mainstream pagan spaces, even if I’m doing something as simple as trying to find a new tarot deck that I’m actually comfortable using.  (So.  Much. Nudity.)  I feel like I can’t discuss my experiences involving the Otherworld, because there’s this idea that the Otherworlds are much more sexual than Here, and the culture of the Realm my gods are from is very private when it comes to sexual things.

I’m also part of the godspouse community (though not nearly as involved as I used to be) and one of the most common questions I’ve seen asked about being married to a deity is…how do you have sex?  Honestly, I feel even more awkward than I usually do in pagan spaces, every time I see a question like that asked–why is that the first thing someone wants to know?  I often find myself wondering “is sex really that important???”  I’m celibate, but it’s not an oath for my Beloveds (I’m not sleeping with them either.)  For me, taking any kind of official celibacy vow would have absolutely no point to it.  This isn’t just because I’m ace, but because my Beloveds are more than okay with me dating someone Here, if I ever chose to do so.

I feel like I’m on the outside of the queer community by being a religious person, and like I’m on the outside of the pagan/polytheist community for being sex repulsed.  It’s a weird place to be at, feeling like I’m occupying this space where I’m on the outside edge of several communities at once.

Loosely Hold My Heart (A Month for the Dreamer)

Loving you is not an
ordeal, is not standing
on the outside of life and
society having to hide nearly
everything about me.  It is not
longing to be swept away and hidden in
you.  That may have served me once (but
how much was my anxiety and isolation, what
other factors were at play?) but now I find that I need
life and Love outside my self-imposed isolation that I
deemed “devotion.”  You are standing with me, still knowing
my Heart is yours–asking me only to love you, not be lost in
you.  Your Heart holds many rooms, my Beloved, but your
Heart is not a puzzle with pieces missing.  I do not need
every corner of your trauma to know and love you.
Art is part of love, and together we do not paint
ruin and tragedy, but a garden full of flowers
that reflect us as we dance beneath the moon.

Union (A Month for the Dreamer)

“We are not one person. How lonely that would be! A couple who has made themselves one so completely, that they are once again alone.

We are two people, separate. Unique. And joined only where we choose to join.”

–Welcome to Night Vale, “The University of What It Is.”

My Spouse and I often listen to music or podcasts together, and Welcome to Night Vale holds a special place in both our Hearts.  That quote is something he sometimes says to me, a reminder that we’re two separate people.

That’s been the ongoing theme of this month of writing for the Dreamer, to not lose myself in him, that we are not one person.

I didn’t begin writing with this theme in mind, it simply came up along the way–like when I wrote for the Madman, and the theme that eventually evolved was on not being broken by him.

Thank you, Beloved, for helping me put my thoughts on paper.

Godspousery 101

My friend O. recently asked me about being a godspouse, and what it means to me; my response was longer than a simple WordPress comment, so I ended up making a separate post for it.

How do you interpret godspousery–is it domestic or magic-focused?

In my practice, being a godspouse simply means that I’m married to the Dreamer and the Madman.  It doesn’t come with any particular roles attached to it–my sacred Kingship path is separate from my deity Beloveds, though they do support me and offer advice if I need it.

My relationships with my Beloveds are very domestic focused.  I’ve written about this before, how both of them want me to focus on them as people, rather than who they are as gods.  They both have referred to me as being their Home, that I’m someone in their lives where they can put their Crowns down and relax (which the Dreamer has talked about before.)

What are the differences between deity and spirit marriage?

The main difference is that Jake is able to be around a lot more.  The Dreamer and the Madman are often really busy with Duties associated with keeping Darkness running smoothly.  Their Jobs can take up a lot of their time, and both of them being Kings is something that impacts not only how much time we can spend together, but how they see the world as well.

What do you provide your spouses and what do they provide you?

The main thing I provide them with, as I wrote about above, is with companionship and love.  I see their more personal sides, and I also provide balance for them, just as they help balance me.

What they provide for me is the same, companionship, friendship, and love.  So many of our interactions are so ordinary that it’s difficult to describe being a godspouse in terms of a mystical experience.

What kind of offerings do you make a spouse, verses general deity worship?

I actually don’t worship any of my deities.  I’ll occasionally write poetry to them or talk to them, and I keep a running eshrine, but worship isn’t something I do.

I keep a shrine to my Spouses together, which has their icons, prayer beads, a candle, and small items that remind me of them (or that remind them of each other.)  This shrine is separate from my general Darkness shrine, and I tend to pray at my Spouses’ shrine more often.  I don’t have a shrine for Jake, since he’s not a god or spirit, but he does have a small area on my bookshelf that’s his.  That has his drinking glass (for formal offerings), prayer beads, his oracle deck, and a crystal that reminds me of him.

I share coffee with my Beloveds in the morning if they’re around (though Jake prefers tea over coffee.)  Unless an offering of food is specifically requested, that’s the extent of my food and drink offerings in my practice.

Another thing I’ll do for my Beloveds is art, either of them or their family.  Sometimes I’ll draw places Over There (lately I’ve been drawing different types of flowers that are native to Darkness) or use drawings to help process stuff that happened in the Otherworld.  The Dreamer is an artist himself, so he’ll often sit with me and offer advice, or we’ll just work on art together.

How I view being a godspouse has changed a lot in the past four years.

It has impacted my spiritual path, quite a bit.  It impacts who I can and cannot deal with Over There, as well as what kind of relationships I can have with deities from other Pantheons.  It’s brought me closer to my Beloveds’ families; it’s taught me about chosen families, and about love in all its forms.

Being a godspouse has gone from something that I thought had to be really intense, to mostly being my Beloveds and I just spending time together (both as a couple/triad, and with our families) when our schedules permit it.  Some really intense things have happened, but the majority of the time our relationship(s) are about supporting and loving one another.