At a glance, my relationship with Poseidon might seem one-sided and focused mostly on me. Our path together emphasis my journey with compassion, my struggles with awareness, my healing and development of healthy, sustainable coping methods. We focus a lot on how I spend my time, we talk about projects I’m working on, or where my regular Reiki sendings are going to go. When we sit down to figure out the goals of a particular ritual or festival (yes, the goal is more often than not to praise Poseidon, but, as He is part of my life, He gets to weigh in with how He wants to ritual to shape up), what I want to accomplish or focus on is taken into consideration. His input shapes everything — how and what I eat, what I do with my time, how I go about my day, He even influences how I dress, from the veil upon my head to what sorts of clothes I buy and, too, what colors. He is my God, He is my Husband, He is my closest Friend, He is my Hearth. He is, more than anything else, why I am an adult who can interact with the world in a functional way and try to leave it a better place, each day. He is why my heart is open and capable of love, and He is why I am able to find joy, to choose joy, to aim for optimism more often than not. He is the biggest, strongest, most effective weapon I have against my anxiety, my depression, and my conviction of unworth. I love Poseidon . . . but I own that so much of o/Our time together is focused on my crap, or it’s focused on how I am in o/Our relationship, or how w/We are together.
Now and again — not super often, but certainly a number of times a year — He’ll push me beyond that. I’ve yet to experience anything even close to a reprimand about where my attention goes. He’ll be the first to remind me that we are finite beings, that we’ve got shit to work through. He reminds me that He does not want me to be subsumed into Him, and that a decent amount of my work in my life thus far has been about learning to take up the space that I take up, to be without apology, and that if I am truly letting Him guide my path, then following where He leads is not a wrong thing. Am I always comfortable that so much of o/Our time together is Him playing therapist? Eh, no, I’m not, but I maintain that we can be so very broken in how we interact with the world, with people, with each other, that therapy is often in order, and who is better to help us with this crap than our Gods, who see so much more, have such experiences to help us learn from? (I am not in the “the gods are not therapists” camp, in case you’re curious. I am firmly in the “the gods can fill whatever role they flipping want to fill” camp).
That said, I am uncomfortable, from time to time, on how much time we spend on me, on my issues, my crap, my fears, my projects, my life. Now — He did decide to partner with me, and part of that is living my life, and there is something to be said for Him living my life with me. There is something that dances so very close to a Mystery — for Him — when it comes to mortality and incarnations and physicality the way we humans experience it. I can’t explain beyond that because it’s not my Mystery, but there is a sense of awe and there is a sense that He is getting more out of this than I realize or can even hold in my mind. Most of the time, day to day, this is enough.
And then there are the times He pushes. The times when I’m caught up in yearning and longing and missing, in regret and a burning desire that is unfulfilled, with an accompanying sense of an inability for it to be fulfilled. It sometimes takes me a few days to realize that what I’m feeling are not my own feelings, that rather they are His.
It’s normal to want to name the feelings and find the root of their cause. What has rendered Poseidon — Poseidon — into a quiet, somber being seemingly burning from within by this yearning. This isn’t the typical “hey, w/We are two different sorts of beings engaged in a relationship that can sometimes be frustrating, and isn’t culture shock fun?” thing. This had nothing to do me, beyond that I could sense His feelings. This was frustration and helplessness, this was being tied to cause and effect, this was mourning, a deep, deep sense of mourning that goes on and on and on . . . .
Historically His moments like this correspond to some horrible natural disaster sort of thing. (Anyone who thinks that Poseidon gleefully sends tidal waves or earthquakes to destroy people has never bothered to spend time with Him after such things occur. He is tied to these giant movements, of water, of the earth, and I’m not saying that He can’t cause such things to happen, but I am saying that His grief over lives lost — and He does not only grieve for the humans — drives me to my knees. He is not cold, He is not aloof, He is not distant.) Because I am me, I want to know the reasons why. So, when He came to me this week and asked that our Poseidon Hippios ritual be more about being with Him, when I realized what I was feeling was coming from Him, I wanted to know why. What had happened? What was going on? What could I do to help?
Sometimes He tells me the reasons. When the tsunami of 2004 hit land, I knew what had happened before I heard about it on the news, because of Him. Usually it’s not like that. Usually, He doesn’t share that much detail. Usually, He requests that I simply be with Him. It’s as if He takes some time to lose Himself in the minutia of mortal existence. I wonder, at times, if He’s reminding Himself why He cares about the small things, about mortality, about life upon this planet. I wonder, when the feeling I get is of His intense presence and of His stillness, and of His seemingly open desperation, if He is holding bleakness at bay by will alone. I wonder what all else He’s got going on in His existence that I’ll never, never, never know about.
“Be with Me,” He pleaded, and every time I started to question what was wrong, He would repeat the request. Don’t be in my head, don’t be trying to puzzle it out, don’t strive for answers or patterns. Just be here. Be now. Be u/Us.
So, I had my ritual. I gave Him wine and pastry. I offered Reiki to the horses, and I wrote. But mostly, I sang, and when I became caught up in the fact that I was singing o/Our songs to Poseidon, when I became self-conscious, He pressed harder upon my heart, pulled me out of myself, and I sang louder. I cannot wrap my arms around my Lord. I cannot press His head to my heart and hold Him close. I can give Him wine and pastry, but what does He get from that that He needs? I can give Him incense, but what are these things when He is desperate and right there, and I cannot, cannot embrace Him?
Love is all I can give Him. My love, my heart, and my willingness to bear witness. To surrender the need to explain, to reason, to know in order to hold this, as much as I can of this, and simply be with Him.
You may need me there to carry all your weight,
But you’re no burden I assure
You tide me over, with a warmth I’ll not forget,
But I can only give you love. — Rob Thomas, Ever the Same