the sacred path of the warrior

Imbolc chant:
The Sun is coming behind the storm,
And here my home is safe and warm.
Good spirits that love us come inside.
Warm yourselves at my fireside.

our storms here are metaphorical.
some of you may have seen on the news that we had a shooting wednesday at the elementary school in placerville.
beloved principal and family man Mr. Sam Lacara was shot and killed by the janitor right in the middle of a lovely public school morning.  a wonderfully sweet man, he was my own teacher two decades ago when i first moved to this town. he was the hot p.e. teacher that all the girls had crushes on.
 and later he has known each one of my brothers who followed through the school system; their hearts are broken.

all this has left me feeling first empty and sad, then feisty.
enough talk of, "what's become of our town"'s time to be active, to actively puruse peace and love.
i want to be a warrior, of the ancient mystical kind.

i remembered addie reading this book years ago, and i had a tiny gem of its message lodged in me.
it's a broken-spined miniature copy but i found it amongst my many bookshelves and took it outside in the sun and began to read. i sat eating my grapefruit, tasting each tiny burst on my tongue and feeling oh-so-glad to be alive and to know the goodness of the sun, the taste of citrus, the joy of books and words.
that is exactly what the shambhala warrior's way is about: knowing and trusting goodness.
being fearless in your heart, being tender; being open to the genuine heart of sadness.
it is a different kind of "warrior" than our current understanding of the word implies.

and i am growing my reindeer horns and ready for fearlessness.
i am going to meditate every day.
i am wearing my bullet crystal from sadie for fierceness and clarity.
feathers and dreamcatchers from milla for wisdom and consciousness.
this old blouse that addie gave me for connection to archetypal characters.

that night we all went out and got drunk and talked up a storm.
being together is good, and we wondered what we can do to make our town good again, and we laughed, and talked some more, and changed the subject, and changed back and talked about everything we love and laughed more. and becky and jorden said good-bye with extra care because it might be the last time they see us without their new babe in arms!
the next two days i've spent alone with my cozy husband: reading, writing, being quiet, paying attention to what is alive and good.

half jokingly, i wear this militaryesque jacket and cap to escort me down my warrior path.
i wore it out wednesday night and my friends giggled at me but said it looked i'm goin with it!
my silly uniform of fearlessness and bravery in which i face the world that holds such imbalance.
today i paired them with a black lace skirt and pink leggings to show my softness too.
my favorite part about the way of the warrior is the humor, the "light touch" as Chogyam Trungpa calls it:
"A genuine sense of humor is having a light touch: not beating reality into the ground but appreciating reality with a light touch."

meanwhile i wait out this dark stormy time (does anyone know what is going on cosmologically?)
 with patience and an open heart,
because the sun is still shining here and i get to snuggle with my husband and cats. 
that's how i know life is good, so good, and my heart is glad to share it with all of you.

my warrior digs:
jaunty black cap: thrifted at snowline hospice, $3.50
army overshirt: thrifted by darin i think
fox pin: found in my junk drawer this morning
mystic green blouse: given to me by addie years ago because she had bad memories in it
black lace skirt: thrifted at snowline hospice, $3.00
earrings: gift from milla
bullet necklace: giveaway prize from sadie
turquoise and shell necklace: thrifted long ago
rose leggings: thrifted, $1
black boots: old ones from charlotte russe, falling apart


oh, heather. you guys have just been having some dark times these past few weeks, haven't you? i'm so sorry to hear that...that terrifies me and makes me so sad and angry. i'm sorry for your communities loss. :(

on a lighter note, you look beautiful, and i love all the colors and textures. those earrings are amazing.
Leora said…
i HEARD about this on capital public radio. so absolutely senseless. it feels weird for me to think about but how utterly strange it must be for you, being that this man had been a part of your life and education. god.

aaaand on a lighter note, the world got smaller when i looked at your photos and realized that art is your brother in law!

anyway, i am so sorry for your loss. i can't imagine. stay strong, soldier. xo, leora
Amy Beatty said…
I can't imagine how those sweet school kids are taking all this. What a heavy weight to have to take on. They are just not old enough to understand. Plus from what I hear the kids liked the janitor too. So confusing that someone they trusted is the one behind it all. Very heartbreaking on so many levels. But it's not just Placerville, its every where and no one can run and hide. I salute you!! We all need to take a stand where ever we are. xo
AlphaBetsy said…
I can't help but admire your healthy and proactive reaction to tragedy. It's inspiring and beautiful to read. Your warrior look suits you, you look adorable and if it helps you feel closer to your inner warrior then go for it.

Violet Folklore said…
You are a light Heather.
Claire said…
I honor how you are approaching the hardships in your town. Peace Warrior! Spirit Warrior! It takes a lot to broach the problems in our communities and take action for what is good and right in the world.

You look beautiful in that olive color, your skin looks so pretty ;) The dancing figures on the front are so wonderful and pagan.

I'm sending you lots of love and light
Anonymous said…
Oh, the children. How many of them must be afraid to go to school now... It's not fair that things like this happen, and it seems all the worse because innocent children were very suddenly and brutally exposed to the violence and cruelty that exists in the world.

Blessings, my warrior sister.
Milla said…
"We are Rainbow warriors/Evil come not near" That's right. Fight the powers of darkness, sadness, ignorance and fight them with love and light and peace and calm, you adorable warrior spirit!
Em said…
Your reading material made me think of Ride the Tiger.

So much sadness and senseless loss...I admire your willingness to act and do. Sometimes I wonder if enough people were to declare a position, would it be enough to right the world at least for a little while. I might pull out my old Z. Budapest books...
I'm so sorry, that's absolutely awful. It looks like you're taking it in stride and responding with strength and wisdom!
Kaylie said…
You are such a strong woman! I admire your attitude in the mist of such tragedy. You are truly a warrior.
AdieSpringB said…
Bun i love ya, and your inquisitive, word-worthy, beautiful, fox-toting, dorky-ass self.

What a strange week...... suppose darkness prevailed a bit. I oddly feel sorry for the wife of the janitor and their daughters. I can't imagine what she is going through, hopefully changing her last name immediately. ...
but here's to now! The never ending moment of goodness that lives forever, the never ending goodness that always, in the end (i believe), prevails.
AdieSpringB said…
What I meant by fox-toting is that your billie looks like a leaping fox?
Missa said…
I love how you expressed your peaceful warrior intentions through this adorable outfit. So many wonderful elements involved!

I also love it when the right book comes along to bring wisdom and perspective just when it seems to be needed most :)

Shine on beautiful warrior!
Teenysparkles said…
That get-up of yours is so cute! I love it! I feel like I want one of those jackets now. Be strong lady, like I know you are. I believe that your amazing wealth of happiness and optimism sits alongside a fierce girl spirit that will take you plundering through these hard times; rise up peace warrior. Much love.
Nicky said…
Sorry for all the craziness that you're experiencing! I love that through the darkness, you can find light and a positive way to accept the world around you. (One could become downright paranoid by all the crap around us!!!) You remind me in a silly and sweet way to keep "chin up" during sad times.
Much love and happiness!
Sadie Rose said…
Thank you for reminding us all of the light path of the warrior(ess) in all of us. This truly is the time; the moment is now.

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