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So, um…um…[insert extreme discomfort here]
Herein, folks, lies a brief cautionary tale.
A few nights ago, I mysterious sprained my foot and/or ankle while getting out of bed, resulting in such excruciating and–at first–literally crippling pain that I wasn’t sure I hadn’t sprained something. I hobbled around the house–but mostly sat on my ass–for the next couple of days, thankful that I have a walking stick on hand. (I can usually walk without it, but I like to give people a visual cue when I go out, so they don’t expect me to be as able-bodied as I look.) After the third day of wearing an Ace bandage and staying off my feet as much as possible, it seemed to be getting slowly better, until as of Saturday I was finally able to walk without the stick and without pain. Because it improved relatively quickly it seems likely to have been plantar fascitis or tibial tendonitis rather than a sprain.
But the timing of the improvement is significant. Sometime on Friday, when I was still in agonizing pain, I hopped over to Facebook (only not literally) and checked out the Morrigan group I’m a member of. There I found an entire thread where people were talking about her propensity for causing foot and ankle injuries in her devotees for various reasons; someone mentioned Cuchulain, and how in the lore she attacks his ankles while in the shape of an eel, and I remembered reading Morpheus Ravenna’s story (on her blog) about how the goddess broke her ankle to force her to get her book finished.
This, I realized abruptly, is definitely a thing. And at the same time I thought to myself, holy shit.
Because last week, after making my post about Brigid, I thought I felt a sense of displeasure from Mama M, but explained it away. And then? Well, nothing happened at first–and I do mean pretty much nothing. My spiritual life went into standstill mode again; it was like a silence fell around the shrine. And the slow trickle of sales at my store dried up altogether.
And then? Then, I somehow managed to injure my foot badly enough that I couldn’t put any weight on it at all for a couple of days.
So I think what happened was this: In light of my attraction to Brigid, and my subsequent (false) conclusion that perhaps I was being handed off to her, this was the Morrigan’s way of saying “I decide the parameters of our relationship, not you.” (I have also been getting the clear message that just because she’s introducing me to her friends does NOT mean she is ceding her claim.) On the one hand, I haven’t violated any formal oaths to her because I haven’t taken any; on the other hand, it’s possible (scratch that: pretty damned obvious) that she implicitly took my acceptance of the term “daughter” (in relation to her) as oath enough.
(As a friend commented on Facebook: Magic 8 ball say situation likely.)
She is also (like Wodan, unsurprisingly) not terribly fond of having the terms of relationships dictated by the experiences and opinions of third parties. In other words, neither of them mistook me for physical warrior material, regardless of what some of their other devotees might have to say on the matter.
The whole situation came to a head when, sometime after reading the Facebook thread, I heard distinctly: “You can be besties with Brigid all you want, but make no mistake about it: you’re MY bitch.”
I assented to that. I apologized. And the next morning, the pain was gone (other than the self-inflicted pain resulting from my poorly propped stick falling on my big toe) and I was able to walk again.
Someday, I will stop screwing up and having to own up to it here. But, my friends, it is not this day.