The darling buds of May are cautiously making their grand debut. As the sun brightens up my living room this morning, I feel a sense of restoration. Despite my gothic pallor, I’m an eternal girl of summer armed with SPF 50 and jet-black shades. As New Yorkers shed their clothes in an act of liberation, more and more women around me reveal their pregnant bellies. As a tarot reader and a woman about town, I’ve been getting asked about my own potential motherhood more frequently, and the other day it finally hit me: goodbye maidenhood and hello motherhood. Welcome to your thirties.
Fertility magic is traditional this time of year for witches; the Goddess and God have frolicked under the Maypole, delighting each other with sexual experimentation having found a perfect marriage of bliss, trust and passion within each other. The Goddess is fertilized during the month of May and her pregnancy is celebrated during Midsummer (June 21st). A lot has been written about the mythology of The Triple Goddess, which can be interpreted as three phases of womanhood. First there is the Virgin Maiden, eyes wide open and enthusiastic representing the waxing moon. Next we enter the Full Moon and there is the Mother, sexually ripe, fertile and giver of life. Finally, as the moon wanes, the elegant, deep and noble Crone emerges from the shadows, bestowing precious gems of knowledge if we are wise enough to put down our smartphones and listen.
Never did I think I would get to this place, but here I am in my early thirties grieving my carefree maidenhood more than I expected. Finding grey hairs — not on your head — would wake anyone up, but what’s actually challenging at this stage in the game is finding yourself smack in the middle of supposed motherhood, but to whom? Or more importantly, to what purpose? What do you want to create and be known for? Becoming a parent isn’t for everyone, yet fertility energy is unavoidable as we are all alive and vital beings. The question is how to use it. This is the time of year where we should all get in touch with our own fertility regardless of how we identify on the gender spectrum.
Use the energy of spring to engage in acts of conscious fertility. In the poetic words of Susun Weed, the expert herbalist and author of Down There, Sexual and Reproductive Health, psychic healers view ovaries as a “basket of collected wisdom or creative potential, including but not limited to childbearing.” She also writes about how important it is to “unstick your rage” from your ovaries with conscious exercise. The testicles hold the potent life force and they too need to keep it moving. Whether it is kickboxing or vogueing, the key to creativity is flow. I live by Sunset Park and if I’m up early enough to catch my older neighbors practicing the art of Tai Chi, I’m reminded of the daily, seamless practice to keep one’s flow of life moving regardless of obstacles and life’s interruptions. The biggest misconception with both creativity and fertility is that it comes in unexpected bursts and you have to wait for that wave to happen and then jump on and ride it out. You can cultivate the fertile process daily, so you can expect waves much more frequently.
A ritual I do this time of year is for the orisha Yemaya, the Sea Queen and goddess of the ocean. She represents fertility, motherhood, and a warm salty sea embrace. She is a spirit that has been at my side before I had words to describe and identify her energy. Perhaps when I was a Catholic child it was the energy of the Virgin Mary with her similar maternal smile, draped in blue and white colors, but either way, swimming in shades of blue has always felt like the Divine essence of femininity to me. As a child visiting family in Portugal, my cousin told me to jump the waves 7 times for protection and luck.
To this day every year I bring to the ocean white flowers, a bit of melon, and try to wear either a blue or white dress and walk into the ocean. I give Yemaya 7 flowers, (her sacred number) and a bit of melon or lettuce and jump the waves 7 times, thanking her for courage despite rocky waters and breathing in the foamy scent of her waves. Try to do this ritual early when the sun is rising so you have optimal privacy and find your rhythm in the waves, honoring your health and fertility. Creative juices are charged and it’s time to create — something or someone. Lilacs, Pansies and Roses are all a bloom and so are you.