Animal Spirit Medicine

Before you get all freaked out that I'm into killing animals to make medications to myself, let me explain that this is akin to Native American spirit work.. connecting with the animal that you are most like, most called to, your Power animal if you will, so that it can teach you, or provide you with "spirit medicine." Think putting eagle feathers in your hair if your power animal is an eagle, or doing a dance that imitates the wolf, if your animal is the wolf, that kind of thing.

Recently, I had the pleasure of working with Emelie of a Forbidden Life, and she helped me to discover my totem animal, the Flicker. The flicker is a type of woodpecker common to my area, and I'm working with Ms. Fox (Emelie's totem is a fox) to discover some of the deeper meanings that my totem has for me to learn, and I'm most excited to see what the flicker can teach me about self-acceptance. This is a concept I have struggled with pretty much since infancy, never really feeling "at home," even when, well, at home. I have flitted from one relationship to another, never really staying in any for very long - just long enough to know it was a huge mistake to proceed past the casual dating part of things. That is, of course, until I met my sweetheart, my rock, my big grizzly, teddy bear, Neil. And while we haven't always been on the ups, we have always loved each other, always been close.

But while I'm completely secure in my relationship with Neil, my relationships with other people, people I'm not so secure around, continue to falter and waver, and change with every shift in mood and energy. I even find it hard to relax around my own parents, my brothers, my best friend. It's as if they are on one side of a gorge, and I'm on the other. Their side is smooth and motionless, mine is shifting with small earthquakes, and I'm constantly in danger of falling in. This feeling of motion and change and insecurity has been affecting every aspect of my life, from my diet and exercise choices (or in the case of exercise, the LACK thereof), to my sex life. All I really want is to wake up and relax! I've always been an uptight person, and relaxing is something I am rarely able to truly do... when I'm told by Neil to go sit down and relax, I don't know how. I will pick up my book and read, but never really sinking right into that book, into the story, drifting away from the world. I constantly look up, put the book down, walk around, monitor things, and then go back to the book. I always worry that it's not me "doing something." I can't ever release the tasks of simple things to him, like giving baths, bedtime routines, supervising them while they brush their teeth, etc. I always have to be involved, even when I'm not supposed to be.

I don't know what I'm afraid of, I don't know why I can't let it go that someone is doing things differently from me, but I do know that I can't keep going on like this, that I can't, or at least, shouldn't, go through my entire life in a constant state of worry and anxiety. I have tried everything from medications to therapy, and while they all work okay for a time, I always end up back where I started, back at the beginning. Maybe a little more knowledgeable about myself than I was before, but at the beginning, nonetheless.

The one thing that I love about using Animal Spirit Medicine, is that its basis is in YOU. Not a human "norm" that you have to learn to adhere to, but you, yourself, as you are, right now. Spirit medicine seeks to find the similarities between you and an animal and have you work together, your animal showing you your wisdom in a form that is easier to digest than a complicated text book of psychology. It's a more "monkey-see, monkey-do" approach, and I will be frank: I am super excited about that. I am not afraid to back to my primate roots, if it means getting something done right!

I will let you know how things go for me on this very personal and spiritual journey, and I heavily encourage all of you to give Ms. Fox a chance if you too wish to discover your own inner power animal. Namaste, and best of luck!


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