It is just past 4AM while I am writing this and I am eating kettle corn and drinking ginger beer in my brand new-to-me apartment. I moved over two days—packing up my stuff and having it loaded onto a truck this past Friday and then having it unloaded into my new apartment on Saturday. Friday night was spent in a hotel with a friend where we ate take out, drank a tiny bit, and talked about our lives and our Gods and all of that good stuff.
The move came about in a frantic sort of way. My roommate and I knew we needed to move because our heating bill at our old apartment was unbearably high [~$500/month for oil], but money, as always, was an issue. We went without heat for a month while waiting for tax returns to magically appear and, once they did, it gave us [read: me] under two weeks to find an apartment. I prayed so damn hard that I would find something that was nice, had affordable heat, was off the ground floor, would let me have room for all my spooky stuff, and might let me have a doggie. I prayed and prayed and made offerings and promises and we signed a lease last Monday, four days before we had to vacate our old apartment.
Moving is incredibly stressful for me and doubly so when spiritual matters are at play. I’d been at the old apartment for awhile and had a bunch of altars that were very lived in there. More than a few Powers had touchstones in my apartment and my room is the room that I shared with the Mister. A lot of Work had been done there, both for me and for clients, and I had extensive shields and wards that had been built over time, expanded upon, and re-drawn as needed.
I’d never moved with such complicated altars before. The working altar went into boxes first—I bagged everything else, prayed that it got to the new place in one piece, and entered it into the queue to be put onto the truck.
The altars for the Powers were taken down dead last I was boxing Them up when the movers arrived and it was a surprisingly wrenching experience. I had to try really hard not to cry while disassembling Sekhmet’s shrine, Eleggua’s space, and the Mister’s altar. Papa Ghede, in terms of physical stuff and emotional attachment, was pretty simple, but the Others were quite painful and I really wasn’t prepared for that mixed into the stress of the move in general.
In preparation, I literally printed out a map of where my new place is located and told Them what the journey would be like—that I would be placing Them in boxes, They would ride in my car to the hotel, I would bring Them into the room for the night, and then we would go to my new apartment in the morning. I checked into the hotel at about 7PM that night with a bellhop’s cart with several moving boxes on it. The staff must have thought I was a bit nuts, especially when I rolled that same bell cart with moving boxes on it out the door at 7:30AM, but I had promised Them I wouldn’t leave Them out in the cold [and it was fucking cold—2 degrees during the move].
The Mister, Eleggua, and Papa Ghede were perfectly fine with being thrown in the same box, as They appeared to understand that it was just the most convenient way to get from point A to point B, but the Lion-Headed Lady was having NONE of that. She’s displeased with me for other reasons [I have not been doing everything I should be doing], but She was absolutely not about to be placed in a box with Anyone Else, least of all any of Them. She tolerates the Mister and Eleggua, but She won’t entertain being in the same room as Papa Ghede. So, She got packed into Her own box—shrine box first with Her idol wrapped in the shrine covering and surrounded by jars of natron. The dried roses [orange and yellow, if you please] that I have accumulated for Her were placed on top and then I had one packed up Sekhmet shrine ready to go.
Once upon a time, I had bought a specific key for Eleggua and it had disappeared. Wouldn’t you know that I found it laying in the middle of the floor of the old apartment as I was doing a walk-through right before the final getting-the-fuck-out?
After the movers had gotten all of our stuff into the new place and I had made a Walmart run for some immediate necessities, I set up the Mister’s and Eleggua’s altars first thing. Both of Them got a hefty pour of Their preferred booze and Eleggua blessed the house by immediately knocking over His shot glass and dousing my carpet with His rum. He got another pour and both of Them got effusive praises and prayers of thanksgiving for delivering me to a new and wonderful place to live. Sekhmet is still in Her box, as She will be going in the living room and the living room is a clusterfuck of boxes and furniture at the moment. Papa Ghede appears to have requested a spot on top of the refrigerator[??], which is quite a change from Him living on my desk in the old place. The desk is now in my bedroom, so that’s not a place for Him any longer. He can see my desk from the refrigerator, so maybe He’s just going to stare at me from there? No clue.
It really is a great apartment, though. One of the things I specifically asked for was room to have space for all nine of my current altars and shrines without having to cram them all in my bedroom. Since I am only living with one completely oblivious roommate who doesn’t touch things that are not hers, the not-in-the-bedroom thing was easy. The space, however, was not.
I lucked out, though, in a major way. The house is spacious enough that many of my altars, particularly the ones that I do not want or cannot have in my bedroom, can live out in common space. HOWEVER, my bedroom is massive. I have been telling people that if a bathroom and kitchenette were attached to the bedroom itself, it would be marketed as a studio apartment. It’s huge enough that I’m going to be splitting it into a bedroom and an office and work space via curtains or a divider or something like that. This is pretty unusual for a bedroom in an old-school New England three decker, so I’m counting this as Them making my life a little easier.
The fact that I will having personal living space in addition to a bedroom makes me so joyful beyond belief. I don’t feel crunched and it means that I can keep Eleggua in my personal space. I was very uncomfortable having my Father in the same place that I dress in and have sex in, but if I am curtaining off the bedroom portion, that issue really isn’t an issue anymore. I like having Him close, but not up in my business like He was at my last apartment. He can sit by my door without being greeted by my ass all the time.
The best part about this place, though, is that it feels like home. I have not felt at home in an apartment that I have lived in for years and years. I have always felt like a bit of a nomad and had trouble unpacking or putting up any of my art and the like. This place feels like it’s mine, though, and that’s wonderful. I feel happy here despite the absolute physical chaos that is boxes and trash bags full of stuff and I am super excited to do things to the space to make it belong to me even more.
I have a lot of magic to do in the next few weeks, though, because feeling isn’t the only thing that makes a place mine. I’ve got a few notions rolling around in my head that turn old ideas into a new manifestation of what’s in my head and we’ll have to see how that goes. I’m excited, though, and that’s a good thing.
Otherwise, things are intense. I had a rather large realization at the event I was at over Valentine’s Day weekend and it’s scary. It was one of those realizations that finds you on your hotel room floor at 2AM crying because <thing> feels incredibly overwhelming and like more of a burden than you can carry. It’s nothing bad and, if I am honest, nothing unexpected, but it was certainly unexpected in that moment.
I’ve got a lot to write about and I’m hoping to do more of that writing once my life starts to emerge from boxes and bags. I am rather appalled that I am booking into the summer and fall for things, as I had told myself that 2014 was going to be a low-key year for me in terms due to the plethora of internal things I have going on. Best laid plans and all..