I finally took vows to Loki at Etinmoot on August 14th, 2011. It stills seems surreal in my mind, but here’s my rendition of what happened.
I woke that morning to the soft patter of rain on the tent. I winced and closed my eyes again. There had been a rather large blow-up the night before with the man who had agreed to be my horse. He and Loki had some serious unresolved issues, and Loki had jumped the body of one of His wives to make that abundantly clear. Needless to say, that particular horse-deity pairing was not going to happen. While He obviously had other available horses on-site, the blow was still devastating to me, especially given some of the reasons behind said disagreement. I hadn’t gone to bed in the best of mind-sets, and now it was raining…
“Give it time,” He told me.
The wedding was “set” for 9 am, and I tossed and turned to the whining of my phone’s alarm until about 7 am. I had makeup to be done, offering tables to set up, and even if someone had to follow me around with an umbrella, this was going to happen.
Candice and I commandeered Tim’s tent (it had the nice, inflatable air mattress, which made a nice “seat” for pre-wedding preparations) and finished my makeup and gathered all the loose jewelry and necessary supplies that had been scattered throughout the tent over the course of the camping trip. When Candice ran to the car to get my dress, the rain finally subsided and I began to set up the altar and offering table. I laid out two red altar cloths, each a piece of leftover fabric from my wedding dress, and dressed one with a simple red candle from Loki’s altar, and the other with a variety of offerings for both Him and Odin, including smoked salmon, chocolate, and several small bottles of honey whiskey.
The final bit of frantic preparations occurred in Linda and Lorena’s camper, which they very generously allowed me to use as my dressing room. After Candice’s 20-minuted epic battle with the iron and dress, I finally convinced her that it was just going to get wrinkled anyway, and we processed toward the field where the wedding would take place. I have to admit that I was incredibly nervous. Not only was I moments away from marrying the God who I trust and love, but I’m also a very clumsy person… wearing a lot of draping fabric…across very uneven ground. I was half-joking the entire time that I was going to trip and mud-slide in my wedding gown, or that I was going to pass out at the altar. Either I was actually much more composed than I felt at the time, or Candice’s threats to skin me if I stained the dress she’d worked on for a month convinced my subconscious not to jinx itself.
Loki and Odin, of course, completely by-passed the altars I had laid out for them, and had instead set up their own little space on the stage in the middle of Cauldron Farm’s ritual area. They always have Their own agenda.
Candice carried the rings for me as we approached the stage, and our attempt to arrive with all the drama and fanfare of the “Bridal March” playing over her phone just ended in riotous laughter. If that didn’t cool my pre- marriage jitters, the look on Loki’s face when He saw me for the first time in my wedding dress did.
You see, Candice had made a deal with Him, that if she was going to make the dress, He had to abide by tradition and not peek at it or see me in it before the Wedding Day. It was definitely a reluctant agreement, but Loki’s reaction was worth it. His grin gave the Cheshire Cat a run for his money.
I ran into his arms, and the instant He held me, any residual feelings of anxiety dissolved. The love that radiated from Him overwhelmed and consumed me. Odin spoke of Loki, calling Him both The Best Son of Jotunheim and the Best of Husbands. All very true.
As was customary for Jotun weddings, Odin cut my hand open: just a small cut, using sanitary measures. Loki and I had already done this in Jotunheim, and while that’s a different UPG for a different time, He wanted to physically manifest every possible part of our commitment on this day. It meant so much that He had done so much to make this happen, to show this amount of love for me. He’d been willing to make almost any effort to prove to me that what was happening was real. In His arms, I discovered what it was like to live and love again. Truly freely, without restriction, and as myself, not fulfilling expectation and not living in someone else’s shadow. With Him, being loved was not being possessed. I was no one’s caged bird, and He wouldn’t let me live that way. Instead, when I fell from the sky and the very act of dreaming seemed unattainable, He was right behind me, throwing me into the air if He had to until I reached heights I hadn’t even conceived of before. Any deeper of what it is like to have that, constant, unending support, to have someone who knows every piece of you and loves you for it, even the parts that you, yourself, are reviled by and ashamed of… there are no words… While we are not always in agreement, He is the best friend, confidant, and lover I’ve ever had. Even standing there, with our hands bonded together for mere seconds, I could tell you, without a doubt that He truly is the best of husbands. But then, of course, I am admittedly biased.
That was all I could tell Him in that moment, is that there was nothing else I could give Him. As He told me that I had been His for a very long time, and that He had waited for this moment, every part of me already belonged to Him. I promised that He would always come first in my life. I would take no partner other than Him without his consent, that no one would take His place in my life. I promised to honor Him and that our happiness would be my first consideration in every decision. But these were just re-statements of what we already knew. There were no words for our emotions: they hung tangibly in the air.
And that was the beginning of my role as a godspouse, or at least acknowledging myself as such, Loki would argue the timing. We danced. Linda and Tim drummed. It was fantastic.
Everyone at Etinmoot that weekend was and continues to be fantastically supportive. Loki chose the location and He couldn’t have made a better choice. After the ritual, Linda and Lorena made breakfast, songs about Loki were sung (by the lovely Linda), and I was routinely shooed away from several attempts at helping to pack up. When we finally did leave the Gathering, we headed out to Marblehead for a wonderful dinner and spent the night at a wonderful Bed and Breakfast.
I’ll spare you the details. But, I discovered beyond a doubt that horsing is not the pinnacle of intimacy in a spiritual relationship.
I awoke again to the patter of rain, this time trickling down glass windows. As I laid there with Him that morning, I felt like a completely new person. And when I finally looked out, this was the view waiting to greet me…