I read the book through many times, unable to believe at first the things I was reading. I could feel something inside my mind opening up, an energy building I had no name for. Before all this I had been dealing with an inner war against myself; I had been raised to be a Christian, and had been baptized and followed through with all the dogmatic requirements of living a “godly” life. This “witchcraft” was something I knew was against the moral obligations set before me by the clergy, but I felt this new emotion more strongly than anything I had ever felt.
My final test was a very simple one. It meant my loyalty, and the result would determine the course of my faith. I took the advice of Nature, that for something important, one should act simply. So I spoke. I said, “Lord Jesus, if you are there and if you are listening, show me a sign. Give me a feeling, a thought, anything. Let me know that this dusty Bible is not just a book. Make me aware of your presence. I do not wish to test you, I only cry out to you in my time of need.”
Nothing. My bedroom was still and all was quiet. In my mind I found nothing. Black silence. Absence.So I continued, calling to the spirits of the universe and the Goddess as I understood Her. I asked of Her the same favor, to show me a sign, anything to validate the new knowledge I had gathered. I suddenly felt light, and the black silence that descended upon me when I called upon the name of the Lord was lifted. Not only was it lifted it was swept away in a brilliance so bright I had to shut my eyes although the room was dark. Swept away like a satin curtain blown in the winds of a mighty hurricane. The goddess spoke to me then. She assured me she had been there and reminded me of the night I had called to her as I looked to the moon. She had witnessed all my days, and had been guiding me to this moment the whole time. She revealed the emptiness of the dogma I was following, and spoke indescribable words to communicate to me that all was not as it seemed, and that Jesus and his teachings were things I had not fully understood. She asked me to follow her into the rest of my time, to allow her to show me the things I had not yet discovered. She promised me that I would be happy; warned me that all would not be easy-especially at first.
I had an image of a woman cloaked in white with eyes of deepest blue. Then I was back in my bedroom and once again all was still. I was not a fool. I knew that it was the sign I was searching for, but I did not feel right to discount the entirety of the teachings of Christ. So I placed my bible upon my now worn copy of that wonderful book. That seemed right. Somehow, the two melded together. But I was not concerned with that at the time.
I had been warned by many that my practices were demonized and would not be understood to be what I understood them to be. I was warned that I would be questioned, doubted, mistrusted. So in an attempt to avoid this I simply kept it all a secret. Nobody had to know. It didn’t involve them. I continued to study the book and the websites I had found on the internet with the same skepticism with which I had started. I learned secretly and like the Witches of old I wrote a journal of the knowledge I discovered at night by a lone candle as to avoid suspicion of my sudden and frequent insomnia.
But as it turns out, that was not the course I was supposed to take. As would be expected with any family living in such a confined space, my uncle’s fiancé began to grow suspicious of me. One day she read my journal and discovered what I had been doing as I was keeping to myself more than usual. I do not blame her for this. I was not a very happy person and this discovery had made me even more reclusive. This was not prudent on my part.
Of course, as predicted she began to believe I was mentally disturbed. Things got worse and worse and I was prescribed anti-depressants. She committed me to a mental hospital in Windsor for ten days. I was not considered disturbed at all- admittedly gay and pagan, but certainly not insane. They told me that my childhood trauma of my mother’s boyfriend abusing and raping me had caused me to develop PTSD. I accepted this as when I was finally rescued by my aunt Melissa I was half dead, and the whites of my eyes were completely red from all the punches I received to my eye sockets and face.
One day I began to dream things. I would be at my house at night in my room, seeing things change as it was carefully searched for all evidence of delusion. One night, my third one I believe, I saw my bookcase –nearly empty. I told my psychologist about it and he asked me what else I had seen in my dreams, and began muttering something about bilocation. I asked him why he was so concerned. He told me that the night I had the dream, he had instructed my aunt to collect all the books from my room that had anything to do with Witches. He instructed the nurse to assign me to an EEG, and to observe me whilst I was dreaming in order to study the brainwaves produced by such experiences. However as the way of things goes, I tested completely normal and had no dreams at all. Two of the nurses there were Wiccan and told me that I had nothing to worry about, that I would be led from this darkness into a brighter day but first I had to change myself. Then all the rest would come.
After ten days I arrived home, and quickly became docile as the medications were intended to make me. I smoked cigarettes now and often hid them from my uncle and aunt, causing them once again to believe I was becoming or remaining troubled. However, I now had an excuse to stay locked in my room consistently when I was not in school. I hated them for not trusting me enough to let me explain, for sending me away and putting me on the pills. It was an injustice and I was offended tremendously.
I had been away for ten days and in that time Tyler and his mother grew concerned. I was not in school at the time since it was summer, but I had not called or seen them. My uncle’s fiancé told them I was visiting an uncle, yet when I came back I told them everything. I showed them the meds because they noticed such a stark difference in the way I had been acting. This became a grave concern for Tyler’s mother, who acted like a mother to me then; since I had no mother of any value to speak of.
Soon Tyler’s mother offered to allow me to live with them, and although everyone was unsure about how it would result, I packed within the week, my aunt signed power of attorney over to her, and I continued my migratory and unstable sojourn. I had not yet found peace or solidity. I moved into the basement bedroom with Tyler and for a long while we were happy. I immediately stopped taking my medication on a camping trip and threw the rest of the pills bottle and all into a campfire. They were unnatural. I was not myself when I was on them.
Eventually, his mother began silently observing my practices. I allowed her to. I trusted her. However, she did not trust what it was I was doing. I was unsure how to handle this. I tried to honestly explain myself. I let her have total access to my books and allowed her to observe my practices. This was not enough. She told me she thought I was becoming too deeply involved with it all. She told me I was mocking her god, and that I was being deceived by Satan into believing my rituals were good instead of bad. She begged me to be prudent and not tinker with the universe.
Tyler and I began to grow apart and as I completed the first volume of my Book of Shadows, I was seldom communicating with him at all. This upset me because he was the only friend I had. We understood each other. We didn’t have secrets and if we were going to break the rules, we did it together and each was willing to accept the blame for the other. One day the fighting began. He constantly teased and taunted me about little things and blasted his music when I was trying to enjoy silence or do homework. We ended up getting into a physical fight, and I was told to leave the same day.
So back to my grandmothers I went.