“For nursery magic is very strange and wonderful…”
I lay my children to sleep in their bedroom, the murmur of white noise and a softly lapping stream lulling them to sleep. They are but a few months old and I am so excited to introduce them to the magic of this world ~ and so excited to learn from them, in turn. They have already grown and changed so much, so quickly. Time continues no matter how ready for it I feel, and I can only hope that their nursery will continue to be safe, strange, wonderful, and magical as they grow into themselves. Who will these precious descendants become? How will they become? And how can I play my part to allow them the safety and space for that becoming?
“Real isn’t how you are made…It’s a thing that happens to you…It doesn’t happen all at once…You become.”
Reclaiming taught me about the concept of being “right-sized”. The Velveteen Rabbit made the concept make sense. The Rabbit becomes right-sized; he becomes himself, his truest, most whole Self. And the process to get to that point is not always pretty. It’s not always easy, especially when we seem to be facing the ugliness alone. Imposter syndrome leers its vicious head at every turn, and it can be so hard not to let its voice drown out the voices of those who love us, those who see us for who we are and could be.
Interrelatedness is so important. The Rabbit is not an island unto himself, he is part of a chosen family, in the nursery, with the Boy, and with the Real rabbits at the close of the story. The Reclaiming community has become a family to me and so many others, as well, reminding me always that, “You are your own spiritual authority, rooted in community”. For me, at least, Reclaiming has become home, and I am becoming Real by being Loved in such a safe way.
“Of what use was it to be loved and lose one’s beauty and become Real if it all ended like this?”
All of this is true, and…I fear the end. More than I fear my own death, I fear the end of the world. I worry that the folks who believe it is cruel to have children now are right, and that I brought these babies earthside only to watch that earth burn.
But The Velveteen Rabbit is also about Hope. It’s about returning to our origins with grace and with gratitude, and continuing to walk in love in spite of an uncertain future.
These are Anxious Times. There is so much fear, and rightfully so. But I also think of another quote, this one from a Reclaiming witch, dearly departed yet so far from forgotten…a witch who lived her life in such a way that she has since become a beloved Ancestor, serving as an inspiration to us all.
Colleen Cook once said, as she faced her own death: “Radical authenticity is lived vulnerability”.
It is sometimes hard to be Real. It can be hard to love and be loved in return, to let ourselves be seen, and it can be harder still to move through such uncertain times with hope. But it is necessary. It is the magic that grows within us, from the nursery to the grave and beyond.
There are Descendants on this planet right now, whether they are ours by blood, by choice, by circumstance, or by little more than our natural connection as human beings. They are worth becoming Real for, worth working for a future in which it is safe to become themselves.
The world is our nursery – all of ours, always. It is strange and wonderful and full of stories; sad and joyous, just as much as it is full of faded fur and loosened seams. We are here, now, full of grief and love in equal measure, and we can use our love to make a better world Real.
That is the magic of right now – loving a better world into life, for ourselves, our Ancestors, and our Descendants. Thanks be to the Velveteen Rabbit, for reminding us not to give up on our own strange and wonderful magic. Let us live and love and step into our own Realness, our own magic, our own selves, so that we may better serve our community. These are anxious times, but at last! at last!
We are together.