One Woman’s Promotion

and Simplicity in Ritual

Today marks the first day of my new blog plan!  A la Shea MacLeod (who is a la Kristin Rusch), I’m implementing “theme blogs” to help me post a specific number of times a week.  As you can tell from the above title and image, welcome to Witchy and/or Women’s Wednesdays!

This post has both themes, though some Wednesdays may only have one :)

My mom has been a police officer for almost 25 years on our local force.  Last week, she was promoted to Major in a fancy ceremony where our Mayor gave the oath of office.  She is now the 2nd highest ranked female on the department! 

This was a long time coming for her.  The majority of years she spent as an officer were during the 80s and 90s when being a female officer was akin to having leprosy.  The kind of difficulties she must have faced trying to prove herself — I can only imagine :(

Mom has a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Louisville and has attended the Southern Police Institute and the FBI Academy.  She was crazy well qualified for the position.

Plus — I got to meet the mayor!! WOOT!  (I’m a total fangirl)

And now for the WITCHY portion!

This past Sunday, as we all know, was 9/11 and it happened to fall on my monthly meeting with Ann and Bev.  I’ve been meeting with these two wonderfully witchy ladies for a year-and-a-half and they are so important to me.

It was my turn to bring the ritual.

How do you create a ritual meaningful enough for something so tragic?  To commemorate such an awful piece of our national history?

One thing I realized was YOU CAN’T.

There is something to be said for simplicity in ritual.  Simplicity brings deeper commitment to what you are thinking rather than doing.  It’s like meditation — what do you need to meditate?  Nothing, generally.  You may put on some tinkly music, light a single candle, or burn some incense, but nothing is needed other than your little body.

I thought it would be amazing to just honor 9/11 by sharing — just me, Ann, Bev, and a single white candle, lit in remembrance.

I brought along poems written by family members of those lost.  And “The Fireman’s Prayer”, a poem I’ve known since I was a little girl. I also brought a letter written from one New York City writer to her pastor back home, 5 days after the attacks.  And “Remember” — a poem by the Native American writer Joy Harjo.

And we shared.  Where we were for the attacks.  What or who we associate with that day.   How we felt, what happened after.  It would seem those are simple ideas, but what they initiated was a long, moving conversation between the three of us.

And all it took was a candle.

Sometimes, the most meaningful rituals don’t involve every tool in our witchy arsenal.  Sometimes, what makes a ritual great is simply…


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Do you know a woman who has beaten the odds to climb the ladder?  If you’re of the magickal arts persuasion, do you use all your magickal tools for every ritual, or do you enjoy simplicity?  What often feels the most meaningful?