I didn’t come to being a witch in the normal way. Although, now that I think on it, there really isn’t any normal way.
I wasn’t raised Catholic, but grew up in an Italian catholic neighborhood. From 5th to 8th grades I attended St. Richard’s Catholic School. It was well known I wasn’t Catholic, not baptized, no communion, no confession. I was your standard operating godless heathen as far as the priests and nuns were concerned. But I wasn’t godless. I knew something was out there, I just didn’t feel like I had been given the whole story or enough information to make my own choice.
Now, as fate would have it, a movie would be released the summer of ’96 that would forever change my life. I was sitting on my front step; it was cooler outside than inside our row home baking in the sun. I was approached, rather ecstatically, by my two best friends, Jodi and Anna. They had just seen this movie called “The Craft” and they were now going to be witches.
Now, at the time, I believed in aliens, ghosts, voodoo, werewolves, vampires, mermaids, fairies, and other assorted nonsense. But this was too much. It’s a movie. Seriously. But they were adamant. So, I did what I do best. Research.
I read any and everything I could about witches. I asked questions and attended rituals and seminars. What I found was a lot of superstition, even more fear and prejudice, and some truth. The truth is what hit me. Being a witch was more than the movies showed. And less.
There were no black rites, no baby sacrifices, no pacts with the Devil. In fact, there was no Devil at all. There was a reverence for both masculine and feminine, and nature. The cycles of the season and full moon guided what spells were worked. Ancestors were honored. Birth, life, death, and rebirth were recognized as part of the journey. Being a witch was not what was shown in literature and Hollywood. This was not about inflicting pain and suffering, or equalizing unrequited love. This was about love. This was not some new age, hippie, dippy, trippy fad. This was a series of beliefs that came from before Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. This was ancient and spiritual without being overbearing. This is what I had been looking for.
So for twenty years now I have considered myself part of this tradition. I started off identifying as a Wiccan. Wicca is the most recent incarnation of these beliefs. I remember, and still have, the first book I ever bought, “Wicca: a guide for the Solitary Practitioner.” Thanks, Scott, you were the gatekeeper to an amazing world. Over the course of the years I’ve gone from identifying as Wicca to witch. Witch, to me, is a more complete description of me. It’s not just rites and rituals and charms and spells. It is who I am and what I do. It’s the stirring my coffee clockwise and saying a blessing over the food as I cook. It’s the color of the ornaments on the tree and meal we eat on Halloween. It’s knowing you don’t sign contracts when mercury is retrograde and that you plant your crops at the new moon.
I hope this answers some questions you may have had. And if you have any others, please, feel free to ask. Brightest blessings.