25.-La-Moreneta.-Black-Madonna-and-Child-statue-at-Montserrat-Spain.-Date-unknown.-Photo-courtesy-of-Runoko-Rashidi

Pilgrimage

If you’ve been reading along for a while, you may have heard me tell the story about growing up with a mom who spent my childhood telling everybody that I was the smart kid and my younger sister was the artistic kid.

It took me a while to realize that Mom was doing the best she could. I wouldn’t presume to speak for my sister, but that particular set of labels didn’t work too well for me. In fact, I was literally 40 years old before it occurred to me that it was possible to be both smart and artistic!

I’ve found my own art forms through the years. Words. Quilts. Photography. The odd scribble drawing or unexpectedly satisfying pottery project. And knitted scarves. Miles of them.

This weekend, I set out on a journey. A Pilgrimage, really.

The kind of perspectives that involve loosening my grip on tales I learned to clutch tightly, in order to receive additional, more liberating ones in this moment.

Also art. Painting, to be specific. Not rollers and walls. Canvas and brushes and even an easel, which I sincerely hope comes with training wheels!

Thirty three days of exploring the traditions of the Black Madonnas.

Haunting music and dance. Tea and rose petals.

Women I’ve never met, and yet somehow know already. Community, simultaneously virtual and real.

Utterly amazing leaders, including Shiloh Sophia and Kayleen Asbo.

A red thread around my wrist.

And my granddaughters as my inspiration.

The world they’re growing up in needs more love.

More of the divine feminine.

More art.

And a whole lot more openness.

I made a promise that I’d do what I could. So, Pilgrimage.

You can come along with me!

If you haven’t discovered Sue Monk Kidd and Ann Kidd Taylor’s bestselling book, Traveling with Pomegranates, that could be a good place to start. Or to re-visit in this moment. Along, of course, with The Secret Life of Bees and The Dance of the Dissident Daughter. I’m sure I’ll have some other hints along the way.

We don’t need new hiking boots. Or special tourist visas. Or even a stash of air travel friendly protein bars.

We just need hope. And an openness to more love in the world.

What, really, do we need more than that in such a time as this?

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