When I decided that I was actually going to practice magic, I also decided to wait to see what presented itself. It happened to be, of all things, a pumpkin, just oozing with magical energy, that I found at a local hardware store one day in very late September. I brought it home, set it on a shelf, and waited again for inspiration to strike. It did, as it usually does for me, in one swell foop; right after my son, while playing with the pumpkin, broke the stem and I also noticed a small cut in the skin, breaking its previous perfection that had made me unwilling to cut into it, the basic outline of a fertility ritual popped into my head.
A bit of background: I have fertility problems. I started trying to have children when I was 22. I didn't have one till I was 31, and that was after two miscarriages. After my first son was born, we decided we wanted another, and, at the point I found the pumpkin, I'd already had another two miscarriages, and failed to get pregnant the way I did with my first son. A fertility ritual was certainly worth a shot!
Now, Tom, my spouse, is a pretty straight forward atheist who has only encountered the woowoo, as I like to call it, through me. He's always game for an experiment, though, and has an open mind. He was willing to take this seriously, which I think was important.
After some time letting the whole thing sink in, I picked a night that felt good; a Saturday at the beginning of October, and we began our first ritual.
I'm not big on the four(five) elements/directions thing, but, as we set up, I noticed I could set them up, so I did. We lit candles in the sconces in our living room. On another wall is a painting featuring water, on a third wall was a glitter lamp that could represent wind, and so I took my Gaia statue off her shelf on the wall with the water picture and put her on a table on the fourth wall. None of the directions matched up, but, as I said, this wasn't really an issue for me. We put on the Audio Visions XM channel (nature sounds, poetry, acoustic music); I debated doing it with no background noise, but was worried our son, Will, would pick up on the sound change and wake up. This ritual, at least, did not need perfection at all.We laid a blanket (that Tom got for me many years ago when he was down in Mexico for a month and that was on our couch for a long time; it's nice to use things that have connections and meaning if you can) on the floor, in case it got a little messy.
It felt right to do this fertility naked, so we did. (I mentioned that the term "skyclad" has always amused me, and explained it to Tom.) Tom not being up on all this stuff, I ran through the whole thing with him, laying out the ritual and meanings and so forth. Then we started up, with a false start 'cause I forgot a bit.We sat facing each other, the pumpkin between us. I talked about how the pumpkin represents fertility; round and firm like a pregnant belly, the flesh of the pumpkin analogous to the womb/placenta, the seed analogous to sperm. We placed our hands on the pumpkin and summoned/felt the energy. Tom cut into the pumpkin and I did the rest of the cutting of the lid; then I swallowed some seeds and Tom swallowed a piece of the flesh (washed down in both cases with water.) Then I laid down and Tom gently rubbed the lid of the pumpkin (with the dangling seeds/goo) on my abdomen. We said we wished to conceive a child. Then we said (and I really like this as ritual closing), "If it can be, let it be." He cleaned me with a towel, and we sealed the deal with a kiss. Then we cleaned up. We put the pumpkin in the 'fridge, then eventually in our garage where it ultimately rotted and eventually ended up in the trash.
Then we went and had sex, although, as I said, I didn't expect it to work necessarily that night, to which Tom replied, "Yeah, it's the Universe, not Domino's, you don't get it in 20 minutes."Notes: I think it important that both partners be equally involved in a fertility ritual; after all, they're equally involved in the conception!
The most powerful part of the ceremony was the rubbing of the pumpkin cap on the abdomen; I think the part with the seeds and flesh could be skipped, but if I did it again, I'd probably leave it in, as it wasn't at all onerous (although apparently I should have cut a bit smaller piece of the flesh for Tom as he ate a bit of apple later to dispel the something-lodged-in-his-throat feeling) and the symbolism was good.
I LOVE "If it can be, let it be"; alternately, "if it may be, let it be" could also be used, although I would prefer "can" most times for the "if possible" sense rather than the "if allowable" sense of "may".
Nine months later, at the end of July, our second son, Finn, referred to for the whole pregnancy as "the pumpkin baby", was born. As of this writing, he is a brilliant, magic kissed (he was born with a chameleon shaped birthmark on his arm) almost-two-year-old.
So, my first attempt at magic was success. Since I had decided that if it worked, I would pursue magical practice until such time as I became convinced that it had been a coincidental fluke, I have done so. So far, my life has continued to reinforce the idea that this event was not just a coincidence, that there is something to all of this, so I am walking this path, guided completely by my intuition, moderated by my mind.
While you will see snark here, it's not actually my default. I'll tell it like I see it, and sometimes that will be funny and sometimes serious and usually somewhere in between. I hope you come along for the ride.