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Since the guide-post about grappling with UPG has become longer than I expected, I’ll share the interesting events of my day in the meanwhile.

The day started out pretty normal. I took my fiancee to class, took him out to lunch at the new chinese buffet, and then dropped him off to sleep while I went to do my research assistance in Lansing.
Something told me not to take 23, and I had the feeling there was more to that notion that just the heavy lines of traffic packed like sardines sliding along a tray at 10 miles an hour. So, I took 94 instead.
Since my experience with the cat, my aversion to looking strange by picking up fallen animals on the side of the road has largely been obliterated. So, I have this agreement with Heru and my own moral conscience that if I happen to see any hawks on the side of the road, I will stop for them. The same would go for crows, or any other such creature my Gods hold sacred.
So, I’m cruising blissfully along 127 when something catches my eye on the side of the road — a good sized black body… with a single wing flapping in the breeze.
Son of a bitch! I sigh to myself as I reluctantly pull the car off at the next exit. I don’t plan on taking this route back, and it’s an 80 degree (F) day. The idea of having a half-rotted bird baking in the back of my vehicle until I can find somewhere proper to bury and honor it is not a tantalizing prospect.
Nevertheless, I double back, pull my car off far enough so that some hapless driver will not plow my wonderful Buick into the ditch while fighting with their cheeseburger, and examine the unfortunate avian. I was quite surprised to find out that it wasn’t a hawk at all, but a turkey. The spirit was happy that I stopped, but didn’t require that I move her body. Instead, I took some of her feathers that were scattered amongst the ditch, then took a few moments to honor her and to help her spirit cross over.

Once that ordeal was finished, I was not far along my merry way to Lansing before lightning began to flash in the distance. It was quite beautiful, until the torrential rain began.
Now, to understand the magnitude of this downpour, I must first explain to you the normal behavior of your average Lansing driver. Imagine combining NASCAR with demolition derby racing, and you have your average day on a busy Lansing road. Imagine now a rain so hard, that it makes people with this degree of insanity and road rage slow down to 35 miles per hour on a 70 mile per hour highway. I was passing people in the right lane going that fast. Even with my wipers on the highest setting, I was navigating entirely by brake lights and the glare off of white trimming on vehicles.
Needless to say, after a few minutes of this, I started to wonder if I was going to make it to Lansing in one piece. So, I threw out a prayer to Ran and the Nine Undines asking if they could please calm the rain until I was done driving to my destination. Instantly the rain calmed down to a point where I could see almost perfectly. So, I think to myself, Hm, that was pretty cool. But.. maybe I just hit a light sheet of rain..
So, I keep on driving, get to the bank, and drop off our donation for the Audubon Society, and as soon as I leave, I exit to another torrential downpour. Some poor man comes dashing up to the door, notifies me that “At least it’s a warm rain”, and scurries inside. Likewise, I dash like hell for my car, and it the instant I end up inside, the rain again quiets. That made me feel pretty incredible.

I spent most of the next few hours wadding through hundreds of pages of illegible scrawl and having internal dialogue with Loki. I asked Him a variety of questions, such as why we have the intense relationship that we do, why He wanted me to be his priestess, and a variety of other things. Like usual, getting straight answers out of Him can be like pulling teeth out of a crocodile — difficult, exhaustive, and often painful.
I really didn’t make any headway until I was driving home. We were discussing how our different experiences interrelated to the concepts of abuse. I asked Him a variety of questions, such as ‘During the events leading up to Ragnarok, had He ever thought about suicide, or was it possible for a God to do such a thing?’ It was an interesting conversation, and it eventually ended on Him asking me why I was so full of questions.
I told Him: “I’m struggling… a lot … with everything that’s happening in my life right now. I just need something that makes sense: a foothold. Somewhere.”
To which He responded: “I have your hand, babe. I always have. From the beginning.”
I burst into tears.
This brought us back to our original topic of conversation, upon which He asked me, “You really can’t grasp the idea of someone loving you unconditionally, can you?”
Again, I fought tears. He was right. This is something that Tim and I had gone around on several times. I was just surprised I brought it to my relationship with my God. But, I do always expect something to be there — that there’s some unseen incentive, or this wouldn’t be happening. It’s a lot easier to invalidate your own experiences when you feel complete unimportant.
Right after this, there was a short pause on the radio, and then “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey started and I burst out laughing. I laughed and cried and drove for the next five minutes. I felt somewhat schizophrenic, but I felt better than I had in a long time.

I actually shared some of my UPG (and turkey feathers) with my housemates — something that I rarely do. Things, of course, went deeper than this and involved some more personal topics, but that’s for another time. But, it was good to get outward perspectives and to be able to share what’s been whirling around inside my head. This is something that plays directly into my next post.
I might be crazy, and maybe I drive home in my car having conversations with only myself. I really don’t think so, but, regardless, it doesn’t matter. Those relationships with Gods… spirits… and whatever else lies out that has made my life infinitely better. And, frankly, the other people in this family we’ve built hear the same voices, so I can only hope that if we’re all wrong, and this is only in our heads, we at least get adjacent padded rooms.

Good night, everyone!