Thursday, January 17, 2019

Strength from Shadow by Susan Morgaine

Flight by Patricia Ballentine

Descent. Powerful Descent.

In a lifetime, how often do we descend? Are we always aware of it?

I am of the mind that I started a descent on the day I was born, when my mother gave me to my grandmother. My initial descent of abandonment and neglect was stopped, temporarily, before it really got started. Living with, and be truly loved by, my grandmother saved my life; even years later, I believe this. I stayed with this beautiful woman until she passed through the veil. Descent re-commenced. At the age of seven, with her death, I learned true loss and overwhelming grief. I went to live with my mother and her partner, always realizing on some level that I was interfering with the life my mother wanted to lead. Each time it was possible to send me away for a period of time, I was.

I was alone. I was lonely. I was in pain. Does the pain of being left and ignored time and again outweigh the pain of not being here? Does the fear and pain you feel as the knife is held to your throat outweigh the calm afterward? Does that pain outweigh the feeling of the pain you feel as you watch yourself drag the piece of glass across your wrist at the age of 13? Does it outweigh the pain of seeing so much blood, panicking and running to clean yourself up, thinking someone is going to notice this, but no one does.

Pain—and descent.

There is the descent of medical illnesses and surgeries, each time control of your body is wrested from you and you begin the descent, and each time you claw yourself back up, refusing to give up, always fighting.

There is the descent that comes with the pain of anxiety, sometimes out of control, when you look at your life and the only thing that stops you from ending it is the love you have for your children.

There is the descent that comes with the pain of family and friends who betray, intentionally and purposefully.

There is the descent that comes with loss, both physical and emotional.

We, each of us, has our pain, our own descent.

While many people suffer and descend throughout their lives via depression, anxiety, loss, I believe that the involuntary descent of a woman (versus the voluntary descent of spiritual growth, which is so different) is that much worse because, more often than not, we suffer in silence, we hold our pain close to our souls. We are taught to not complain, and if we do, many times the words are not heard; and so, our pain is quiet, heard only by ourselves. This is what women learn, this is how we are socialized. No matter what happens, the only thing you truly must do is... smile.

But, somehow we go on, don't we? Through the pain and the anguish. Through the descent and the ascent following. We leave something of ourselves behind each time we fall, only to pick ourselves up and begin again. Each time we leave something behind, something stronger takes its' place, because it must.

An excerpt from Inanna's Ascent.


Susan Morgaine is a Daughter of the Goddess, Witch, Writer, Healer, Yogini. She is a certified Kundalini Yoga teacher; a Reiki Master, who also works with chakras to clear the chakras; She priestesses a Red Tent in southern MA (US), as well as teaching Goddess Spirituality workshops. She is a writer whose work can be found in The Girl God Anthologies, Whatever Works: Feminists of Faith Speak and Jesus, Mohammed and the Goddess, as well as Mago Publications She Rises, Volume 2, and Seasons of the Goddess. She has also been published in SageWoman magazine and is a monthly columnist in She is the author of My Name is Isis, the Egyptian Goddess, one in the series of the My Name Is… children’s books published by The Girl God Publications. She is a Certified Women’s Empowerment Coach/Facilitator through Imagine A Woman International founded by Patricia Lynn Reilly. She is a member of the Sisterhood of Avalon. Her website is and she can be reached at

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