Welcome back to our next edition of this series. A few months back, after publishing our first 4 interviews, an outpouring of interest came in from women in this community who wanted to contribute by sharing their words, experience and perspective. Holding a space for these women to tell their stories felt like a real honor to me.
I am continuing to publish the words of some of my favorite Witches that I have personally reached out to, as well as readers of HTHG that I have not yet personally met, because it feels IMPORTANT and I will keep doing it until it leads to something else.
HTHG started out about simply DIY HAIR and has taken us down a portal deeper into identity and empowerment. The question of what it means to be a WITCH is simply a facet and a stop along the journey, a moment to dive into a subject that obviously touches many of us.
The process of producing content that is authentic and meaningful has been very much like following a single firefly deep into a big dark cave. Occasionally, the firefly enters a small chamber, and illuminates every aspect of its surroundings. There, we stop to look around.
Please enjoy this interview with HTHG reader Sarah Choquette. She read some of our past interviews and heard the call to share her own story. Her path has been recently illuminated by some major life changes, igniting a powerful fire to seek truth and balance and own her power. Today she shares with us her thoughts on the topic of what it means to be a witch.
Preceding her interview is an email she sent me, answering the call to contribute her words and experience. It really touched me and reaffirmed why I continue to strive to hold space for the truth and identity of others.
………..I replied to your invite to contribute knowing I was called to it, but I wasn’t ready until now.
2016 I spent voraciously learning, being recalled to my truth through old interests that grabbed me or made my heart sing, and new paths my brain needed walking. Mythology, divination, moon and woman magic, questioning the religious establishment, and always, my beloved crystals.
Since the start of 2017, Ive gotten to put it all into practice. We uprooted from our Southern town and Christian community, are in an RV with our daughter and headed ultimately to Washington state. And, that act of self love Spirit led me to? A choice to initiate a miscarriage. I had an abortion one town over from where we moved. A very polarizing choice in any circle it seems, but without our consent word got out to our previous community of friends, and now few remain after casting bombs of religious judgment. Its been agonizing to lose so much, we never intended to cut ties even though we felt our paths branching. And especially not in this way. It’s affected my family too, since my brother and his family were part of the same organization… Ive almost given up several times, wanted to walk out into traffic or ask my husband for his gun. (Just some
very hard moments, no real danger. I’ve turned down Death too many times already, the jerk just knows the way to my door too well, lol)
The Universe kept me going with the support of my husband and my own blessed Fire energy that just wouldnt let me quit no matter how many waves washed over it.
And yesterday, I gave in. To own my power, my story, my place, and everything else I finally had words for that tumbled out like a flood into this email.
I just wanted to say… having this email sitting on the shelf to reply to has been a catalyst charm for me. A touchstone. Not to be dramatic, but something to come back to. I knew it was time, it was real, and I wasnt crazy or wrong.
Having the other interviews to read has been such a balm as I am bereft of community so recently. I had not bonded or agreed with anyone for a long time, but had really opened myself up to one woman, who it turns out wasnt in the same place I was and in her pain and confusion at my choice spilled everything to the religious leaders.
Ive been asking the angels for faith in humanity and to trust people again.
Reading the witch interviews, I felt so warm and hopeful of one day enjoying and trusting women and community again.
Im so grateful all of this is happening now. I know there’s a reason for every part, and Im coming home not just to Washington but to myself, and The Mother.
What does the term Witch mean to you?
Wise. And unafraid of the dark. Of any darkness. In nature, themselves, or the cosmos. The old Saxon and Celtic terms swirl for me, as I imagine a heiritage embodied by someone who is wedded to the Earth, cognizant and alive to its secrets, rhythms, history, and power. Today, this may take the form of energy geekery or crystal nerdship, green living or full on BAMF manifesting. But it is always and forever about the Earth. And about Balance. A witch is someone unapologetically walking in their truth and/or power.
How would one know that one was a witch? 🙂
Oh, when you know, you know! For me, and others I have seen. You may have run for years, rejected or recategorized it, refused to inhabit that space marked with THAT name. But there comes a day with your flirtations with the trappings, sentiments, stories, and beliefs just isn’t enough.
Other people’s experience may look like beginning to try out new modes of thinking, rituals or the like, and gradually find themselves at home in a way nothing else ever fit.
Usually it starts with curiousity, interest, and research. Even with tweezers and gloves on.
Talk about intention and manifestation…..How do they work together, and can you recall the first time you experienced their power in action?
I am still fairly new to this, both using it and recognizing it. I began while in the framework of a Judeo-Christian background, giving credit to those archetypes. But at the time I needed them, to give me confidence in what my heart purely wanted, and to believe something powerful enough could make it happen. I would say the very first was Spirit journaling when I was a teenager. I wrote out that I would get married young, and my innocence would be a blessing to a man who had been hurt. That was at 16. Three times I thought I knew who the man was, and three times I was grown and matured into who I needed to be to meet and marry my husband, at 19. I am his second wife, and in every way that dialoguing scribble in my Spirit diary came true.
The biggest thing I can add to that, coming from the background I do, is that manifestation does take action, however small, on your part. Christians and those from that mindset often “leave it to God”. That has been an interesting belief to rewrite, for me. Taking that it does not mean Spirit and Source are any less willing and able to help, but that it is a partnership, and I truly have a powerful action to bring to the table.
Also the belief that the intentions of your heart are pure, and worthy of manifesting!!!
How do you think that a collection of witches is magnified in power to an individual witch?
That is a difficult question for me. Currently I am called to a solitary path. Yet, I do know and believe and enjoy the power of a collective. I have witnessed amazing energy among groups of like-minded people coming together for a passionate purpose. Any people! I imagine a gathering of witches, for the compassionate intent of Earth’s affairs or humanity’s, to be definately powerful. 🙂 Personally I believe it can be most effective in clear and guided meetings, events such as Spiritweavers for example. Or the Stand with Standing Rock demonstrations, days of prayer, global healing connection at 11:11, the Women’s March on Washington.
You get enough magical people together, good shit happens!
Where would you direct a woman who is interested in exploring her inner witch for the first time? (books? Plants? etc)
Honestly… science. I began with the film What the Bleep Do We Know?! It takes quantum physics, belief, perception, and the powers in ourselves and makes it so clear and unmistakable!! Very easy to understand for the most part.
Next, ask yourself what you have always been drawn to? For me it was crystals and rocks, but a good dose of herbs and flowers and colors. And angels. Research and explore what your heart is leaning towards! Throw in some music at 432hz while you are at it, and notice how you feel.
Books books books! The Biology of Belief by Bruce Lipton may be a bit heavy, but benefit some. The Game of Life and How to Play It by Florence Schinn or The Path to Wealth by May McCarthey (about more than money), great way to break into intention and manifeststion. Especially for those dealing with anxiety from religion.
I cannot recommend enough Meet Your Soul by Elisa Romeo and The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.
Aside from those practicalities, I would say to look at what you shyed away from. That may be the very place you need to start. Healthy sexuality. A pagan or Spirit fair. Researching Native American symbolism. Harry Potter. Seeing a psychic or metaphysical healer. Start dabbling, there is something for everyone! Keep at it till you feel your heart lighting up, then follow that!
How do the facets of our souls (shadow side, sun-lit side, good, evil) effect the process of owning our power?
Gah, my 2017 so far in a nutshell. And I started rereading I Am Morgan Le Fay by Nancy Springer, so I’ll just say it like it hit me there. Only when you embrace every part will you be whole, and free to choose what parts you truly want to focus on growing into.
I didn’t want to be able to tell when something was marked for death. Whether it be a pregnancy, illness, relationship, or venture. That tends to make you pretty unpopular. Especially in a religous circle where positivity and life is prized.
But, as I have looked backwards into the memories of wise lives before me, I and my gift are necessary. It is a mercy of Divine Compassion to have someone within a community who is bold enough to tell when a heart should take time to prepare for a grief that’s coming. And, that’s not the only facet of that gift. It works the other way, too. Pregnancies, marriages, good job changes afoot. I have predicted a lot of them. But there is a Balance to be trodden. And that is where the power of a Witch lies. Between seen and unseen. Spirit and Physical. Death and Life. In owning the Balance in ourselves we can more easily see it in the world, and do our part to correct it or share with those who need to see it too.
Why do you think it is so hard for some of us to own our power, speak to the woman who knows she has it but is afraid to use it.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
This was the first gem that thundered into my path of awakening. It is truly the best words I could hope to offer.
Tell us a little bit about your personal witch journey. ( if you want:)
I never wanted to be a Fire sign. I never wanted to be angry about things, that got you noticed and corrected. I never wanted to be contrary, troublesome to authorities. I never wanted to be on any deity’s shit list. I wanted to skate under the radar in life and have people like me. I tried to change my results on internet quizzes, I wanted to be Water, Air, Earth!
I have spent my whole life miserably trying to make others like me, keep others happy, and do what was expected of me. Ignoring and piously shunning my hunger and pulse for crystals, moon mysteries, energy, and pleasure. At the cost of denying everything built into myself. Numerology wise, I am a One. I am meant to be a leader, and I spent my first 20 years after childhood looking for someone else to tell me what to do.
Depression has been a near constant companion since my childhood. After the birth of my daughter, my adrenal system was so taxed it was barely functioning. At the same time, I started asking myself what I was going to tell my little star-child about the world, as she grew. This led to me examining what I had professed to believe about pretty much everything. With low adrenals, postpartum anxiety and depression almost took me out through suicide. And I was DONE. I was done with a half-life. I had never been able to please my mom, or the other authorities I brought into my life. I only felt alive when I was stirred up about something, and I was adult enough to not be able to sit through misinformation or opinion in my religious circle anymore. I could see how it was hurting people, how it had hurt me. How it was keeping us all controlled. How as good as the people leading us were, they were teaching from a broken and flawed system. And after a lifechanging decision I made for my own self, the biggest act of self-love Spirit has guided me to yet, I broke my shell. I came face to face with my own power, smiled, and asked it to dance.
I think a lot of my depression came from ignoring my heart for so many years, and avoiding red, passion, sensuality and pleasure, avoiding confrontation or responsability, avoiding tarot, avoiding books I loved and mysteries I felt drawn to, avoiding leading or creating or being noticed. Physics has explained reincarnation enough for me to believe I was hiding because parts of me remembered being killed or outcast for my gift and beliefs before.
But I learned that Unconditional Love exists. I am the only one that can live my life. And it’s a darned interesting and important one.
I am a Phoenix. A Dragon. A Goddess. A Witch. I used to smirk and cringe when other women used those terms, I see you there. But I understand now. These words are important. Our power is important. May you know. May you be.
What is our role now, as witches of the world, and how would you like to see us collectively using our powers to heal?
There is ignorance to be taught, fear to be overcome, injustice to be called out, treasure from the ancestors the world over to be explored and relearned. Start with yourself. Start at home. Heal yourself of misperceptions, fears, and ignorance. Find others who are doing the same and lift them up! Take time to actually comment instead of just liking something, share your energy. Own your truth and speak up about what makes you come alive, that is what the world needs. Examine what you have believed, and why. Be open to changing.
Women are under attack in the world today. The Feminine energy needs to be nurtured, shared, celebrated, and deep gratitude sent into the Earth wherever women are free and safe. Find out what can be done tangibly in your community for the homeless, forced prostitutes, prisoners, the abused, the elderly. And for other nations, buying Fair Trade or supporting women’s businessess when you buy gifts. Giving to schools for girls. Raising awareness about war situations and giving to reputable charities and rescues.
Connect, whether through meditation, online, in person, whatever! with fellow witches to send healing and cessation towards tumultous areas. There was a female psychic named Krystyna Skarbek who worked for British Intelligence in 1944. She was sent to France ahead of the liberation of Europe, and using just her energy and words she convinced whole battalions to disable their guns and desert their stations.
Maybe you don’t think you can do that, but what if you pictured a soldier intent on harming someone and pictured yourself standing between them, saying “Stop! You are better than this! This person did nothing to you, take a moment and wake up to how your government is using you and forcing you to murder! This isnt who you are, or who you want to be, and you have a choice to stop.”
You might be amazed at the power of the imagination to cross time and space. Be open to being used in this way for the sake of the World.
I feel this is so far in the future it almost is pointless to say, but…
as those wrongs are righted, be a keeper of Balance that we do not swing too hard in the opposite direction and become opressors. It can be tempting for those who have been victims. The way of the Witch is to make and keep Balance.
Please Check out more of Sarah’s musings on her blog here.