I’m trying something a little different as another creative outlet on my blog.
During the pandemic, I haven’t had as much bandwidth to write consistently (or do a lot of other things, like laundry). Part of it has been general pandemic blah, which has been going on for a year and a half now. Sometimes it has been because I have been preoccupied with other things that give me joy, like spending more time with loved ones after COVID-19 vaccines became widely available this spring. Other times, I have been busy with service to my local Pagan group, or in some other capacity as a priestess of Aphrodite. These days, I’m very vulnerable to screen fatigue, to the point where I want to chuck my computer out the window if I have to get on another damn Zoom call.
This has been a bummer because I really enjoy writing! But I also have to acknowledge that sometimes I’m just not feeling it. I try my best to practice what I preach, and here recently, it has been a lot of self-care.
Earlier in the summer, the US was full-steam-ahead on reopening. In June, things were looking up! People were getting vaccinated and cases were down. Then the Delta Variant crashed the party. Combine that with confusing mask guidance, politicalization of vaccines, people travelling more, and the 4th of July holiday, and the US plunged back down the COVID abyss.
The weirdest thing was the complete disregard that anything had changed, even in late July. Businesses and regular life seemed to continue to be opening up regardless of what COVID was doing. In later August and September, it was finally collectively acknowledged that shit was going poorly, and maybe we should do something about it.
It’s a weird time to be a human. It’s an especially rough time to be a human who cares.
The Divine message that I have had reiterated to me over and over again in the pandemic is self-compassion. Honor your needs. Take care of yourself. Adapt your spirituality to fit what works for you right now.
So, I’ve listened. In our productivity-driven culture, it can be difficult to slow down. To take time to rest. And to not feel guilty when you do.
Last week, Aphrodite popped in on one of my evenings when I felt like I should be doing something – anything – productive instead of laying on my couch with my eyes closed listening to an audiobook. Her warm and comforting presence felt like a welcoming hug. As I struggled to focus my thoughts, a phrase dropped into my head:
I have Divine Permission to rest.
I took a deep breath and let it out. I let go of the guilt. I let go of the “should’s”. I let go of my to-do list. And I took time to rest.
I can’t be who I need to be for Aphrodite if I don’t rest. I can’t be my best self, a good friend, or a caring partner if I don’t acknowledge and take care of my needs. So I will honor Aphrodite with sacred rest. It is sacred because I do it for myself. It is sacred because I do it for Her. It is sacred because I do it for everyone I love.
There is beauty and power in that.
All of this to say, as Divine inspiration strikes and I feel so moved, I will be sharing affirmations and little messages with you. I haven’t done anything with photography and digital art in quite a while, and it has been nice to have another creative outlet that I can share on my blog in service of Aphrodite. I hope this helps you as much as it helped me.
You are welcome to save these images for your personal use – as a phone background, to add to a personal vision board, stick on your refrigerator, or what have you. I ask that if you share these on social media or with others, that you please include attribution to my blog. (That’s currently the text at the bottom of the image.)
Bright blessings to you ~
Funny Afterword: As I was designing this graphic, my cat decided to sit down on my keyboard. After I finally convinced him that the couch was a much better place for his fluffy butt than my laptop, I saw that the graphic now read “I have Divine Permission to rest. jk”. Apparently my cat does not think I have Divine permission to rest, despite being His Royal Fluffiness, the King of Naps. I had a good laugh about it.