Day 23: Meeting the Goddess, Mother

And the maiden flows into the mother today. As with the Maiden, I’ve found Roderick’s summation of the Mother worthy of large quotation (some trimmings done):

In her mother aspect, the goddess represents birth and nurturing. She is the archetype of actualized potential. The seed that was planted in the maiden phase of energy has come to fruition: she is the full, fragrant bloom, the ripened orchards, and the full sway of summertime. She aligns with energy and the full power of growth and adult maturity. The goddess in this aspect also represents compassion and understanding. She is the actualization of creativity and of fecundity.

The mother also has a dark side. She can represent our potential to smother and to encourage dependence in other people. The dark side of the mother is a belief in one’s own compassion, but expressed in a self serving way.

This wasn’t particularly a lightbulb moment for me. Everyone knows what a good mother should be, and everyone knows how destructive a smother mother is. It was just very nice to not have Earth Momma venerated in all her glory. The dark side deserves its attention.

Roderick also includes a list of correspondences, and will continue to do so over the next four aspects.

Lunar Phase: Full
Seasonal Phase: Late summer/early fall
Color: Green
Pagan Celebration: Lughnassadh, August 2
Direction: Southwest
Time: Late afternoon
Incense: Meadowsweet and oak
Essential Oils: Lotus, cucumber
Magical Number: 4
Vocalization: the a as in “say”
Herbs: Hollyhock, frankincense
Planet: Venus
Body Part: Heart, lungs, hands
Chakra: 4th–heart, center of chest

And as with the Maiden, Roderick asks us to write down our positive and shadowy mother qualities. Here’s mine:

Positive Mother Negative Mother
I love, love, love caring for others. I’m the person who volunteers to DD to make sure that my friends are safe. I’m the one who cooks for gatherings, who tries to organize and keep things straight. I like the feeling that comes from caring maybe more than I like the actual caring. It’s nice to be needed…and maybe that feeling can lead to being overbearing. Everyone needs to learn to do these things for themselves.
I love that feeling that comes when a project is seen through to its conclusion. I linger on that feeling too long. I’m the type that would go on and on about my college thesis when I’m getting my AARP card.
I have the compassion. I listen to my friends woes and try to offer advice if it is wanted, a shoulder to cry on if that’s needed. I am a draconian bitch. If someone ignores advice and keeps whining, I have NO patience for them. And that spills over to myself. If I procrastinate and whine, I have no tolerance for myself either.

I am such a selfish person. Sometimes I think my inner mother is the type that would develop Munchausen syndrome. I like the attention that comes with ‘caring.’ I revel in the compliments that come when a meal I’ve made or a party I’ve helped throw goes off well. Sometimes I catch myself actually fishing for them. And I sort of like having people depend on me. It’s almost like I’m collecting favors to cash in on at a later time.

My inner mother is a Bree Van de Kamp. Or is she? I don’t always notice those aspects of my mothering acts. Very often I do it simply to be helpful and useful. It’s more selfless than selfish.

I think the mother aspect is a tightrope act. I think I keep a decent and realistic balance, though perhaps I could lean more towards the selfless part. What I really need to do is become a better mother to myself. I don’t tolerate my ‘failures’ well. To myself, I know that I am Mommy Dearest.

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