10/31/2014 by syrbal-labrys
I am feeling a bit off the normal page today. Today is my Minotaur husband’s last day at work — he is retiring. I admit, superstition and fear are ruling my morning. Both of us are a bit flighty this week, expecting some disaster to ruin our plans for a new post-0330 til 1830 life. Because yes, that has been his work day hours for most of our married life. So, I restlessly tossed and turned last night, worried about his final day.
He took yesterday off to help with some household things, but even that didn’t go as planned. He speared the palm of his hand with a screwdriver! It has long been a joke how accident prone he is at all matters of home and garden, but I was horrified that changing out a light switch required a visit to Urgent Care, pain meds and antibiotics. (I’m trying unsuccessfully to comfort my anxiety with another bit of superstition, an old saying of “Blood has been shed, the danger is passed.”) We picked the 31st of October as the end of work for symbolic reasons — most of my fellow pagans celebrate this day, not as Halloween, but as Samhain.
Samhain* is celebrated by some as a Celtic New Year. My Samhain is next weekend, not this one — but New Year it is and the week leading up to it is always profoundly moving in terms of portents and memories wafting out of my mind and memory like scents from a mythical witch’s cauldron. Our married world will turn this next week, once he gets home safely today and I can stop sweating. (Is the difference between a premonition and superstition that at the end of one you say “Well, I knew something was happening!” and after the latter you go “Well, that’s OVER with, thank goodness!”??) His focus, for the first time ever, CAN be on his marriage and home life.
But there is always a worm in the apple, they say. I know a lot of women who suddenly hate having the man under foot if she is (like me) already home from the paid work world. I admit, I have some trepidation going there. My Minotaur defined himself by his work life; home is where he hung up his brain with his hat. Thus his accident proneness here — home is where he didn’t need to focus and engage. I expect an adjustment period where he thinks I am very bitchy-demanding and I think he is behaving like an absent-minded, disengaged twit.
But since it IS the Samhain season? I admit to a bit of amusement amidst my ambivalence. This is the time of year when it always seems things go forward of their own inertia without that much actual doing from us. It is the time of sudden happenstance and synchronicity in this household. Working on the bedroom for our returned youngest son this week, it all went so easily as to spook us out. This house is infamous for making us sweat and bleed for every change. But screws found studs, moved furniture fit perfectly, paint did not run out before walls did. So, as a family, we seem to have turned a corner, found the key to unlocking our future?
And because there must be balance, perhaps? I note with amusement that another key turned as well. The one locking up the man his family insists is not crazy, who had led police in Pennsylvania on an unmerry seven week chase! The sport-killer who shot cops for no better reason than to prove he could is caught! It made me smile that he was handcuffed with the cuffs of the man he murdered. And yes, I said superstition and “woo” was in charge of my mind today, right? I’d say his surprise arrest was just my world saying “Don’t fuck with Halloween OR Samhain, you asshole! The kids get to trick-or-treat now and YOUR year of self-aggrandizement is OVER!”
* Samhain is generally pronounced “Sow -in” or some variant thereof. We pronounce it more like “Sah-vein” rather like the Gaelic name for the month of November.