Today I share Hollie's Swan Blessing story of the Vow to Forever Fight and how she released herself from this old vow of her lineage. Warrior's oaths such as this carried out of time can create a sense of heavy responsibility in our present lives often for situations and events that we cannot control. These types of soul vows also carry a fierce need to defend and protect the lives of the people we love and even whole communities that we hold dear, while the integrity of these feelings is beautiful what this can create is a need to be 'ready for battle' at all times and a lifetime 'at war' which is exhausting.
I was honoured to hold this Swan Blessing session for Hollie who has such integrity in her work and path teaching young women and girls the cycles nature and magic. She is someone who has walked her talk for many many years. I love the photo below of Hollie with her bow and arrow on her land where she lives off-grid with her family. This is a beautiful image of embodied ancestral wisdom. To release the vow to forever fight has released Hollie from a responsibility that would have been impossible for one person to ever carry so that she can now continue her work helping and speaking up for others with a new relationship to herself, community while feeling the joy of living in the garden of our Mother Earth.
Swan Blessing Story:
"I met/merged/revisited/became an Ancestor Woman at the time of the first Roman invasions to Britain-Brigga. In a round hut with an earth floor, there was a man, a beloved, dying from wounds from a battle where many lives had been lost. There were hounds in the hut, of course there were hounds. And there were women gathering with children.
In the moment of the beloved's death, in the fear of losing tribe and land, my Ancestor Woman vowed to forever fight for the next seven generations, to keep them safe, to guard their power, and to ensure that no 'other' force took their freedom.
The gathered women would keep the next generations safe by separating – going it alone; each taking a group of young people to disappear into the forest, join with other tribes, save what can be saved, even if it meant being alone. A deep wound was torn in leaving the land of our ancestors, but a new promise was held in the potential for a future that kept the children safe.
I saw the Ancestor Woman partaking in various teaching activities. She crossed many tribes/cultures. I was aware of power-full healing modalities, plant magick and the creation of hand crafted, woven creatures that could hold medicine. The Ancestor Woman travelled many places, taught skills to many people, with faces different form her own. I recognised her ability to heal in ways that didn't need explanation. She had unique techniques and she engaged her Self as a process of the work.
Her next generations were kept safe and she went on to share wisdom in other places, past Brigga, onto ships and beyond worlds she'd ever imagined. Toward the end of the vision the Ancestor Woman lay on a pellet on a ship, moving along an unknown waterway. Although there were more people, she was set apart. Finally, she lay in a field of aromatic plants, somewhere on the Mediterranean coast, and I understood that this would be where she would die. I recognised all elements of this Ancestor Woman's story. The fight for youth place and space, grief and dispossession of ancestral connection, isolation and going it alone, living in the counter-culture, travelling the edges, and working with techniques that can't be explained...
And yet, releasing the binds of the Ancestor Woman's vow allowed me to shift from creating the pattern to supporting the need. Cutting the threads released the pressure of having to fight, to supporting a process. Although the Ancestor Woman was successful at providing/supporting/saving the next seven generations, her greater body of work, and that which was the largest gift to the world, was actually that which could not be named – her expert Self.
It has been some time since I had my Swan session with Julia. Writing usually comes easy to me, yet I could not write this piece. More recently I entered a vision and to my surprise, the story picked up at the place where the Swan left off.
The Ancestor Woman was in the field, with the many plants, and indeed she was dying. She was there, in the place of plants to leave her wisdom for the next generations. She passed her healing to the plants, and the message was clear : Tend these same herbes and you will access the wisdom. My deep truth is that plants are a spiritual practice. All the wisdom and healing that I would seek, is built in to the process work of the garden. It's all right at my fingertips. As provision and security, the garden is an act of wisdom for the next seven generations that is healing, powerful and continues to emerge.
I'm mega-grateful for this work as an aid to unravelling the complexities of wisdom and vow and truth. The forgiveness process in the Swan Blessing is perhaps the most power-full. It's one thing to see your story. It'a another to let it go. Julia's skilled facilitation allows both in such a supportive and nurturing way. Truly, an edge walking Wise Woman! I like to call her Aunty Julia."
Hollie B. 2018