All night long I kept waking up. Somehow I knew tonight would be the night Laura was gone. I awoke at dawn and looked out the window to see the sun starting to light the way for the day wondering why I was awake again and wondered if it was now. I actually looked at my phone to see if there was news and there was none yet. So I lay there and fell off to sleep finally again but she must have passed by us all as she flew passed.
Laura meant more to me than I think she will ever know. I think maybe even more than I know. She has supported me from the moment I became part of the Temple of Isis/Los Angeles. She allowed me to be me and still serve. I’m not a front and center priestess. I prefer to be in the background and hold the energy. I don’t have the need to be out front most of the time. She let me be an observer, a chronicler, with an occasional push out front if she thought it was time.
BunniHoTep was born at a priestess meeting with just a few of us there when she first appeared as a aside or joke but when BunniHoTep started telling me stories she believed and didn’t make fun of me or disapprove of the newly remembered goddess. Some of the others disapproved but she seemed as real to Laura as she was to me and she scolded me for saying she was a made up goddess. Laura was quite clear that she was a newly remembered goddess. She was my best editor and critic for all my stories and she knew that the Littlest Druid was the closest to my personality without ever being told.
Every story I have ever written had “Will Laura like this one?” every time behind it and it always will.
When we went over the first night to keep vigil Laura was already leaving her body and not really present all the time but when Tecia told her Mary and Denise and ElfKat and BunniHoTep were there the name she reacted to and said was, “BunniHoTep!” with a smile before settling down again. I’ll always have that picture in my mind and smile.
Laura came to my rescue so many times in the last years after I got laid off. Mentally, physically and spiritually, she was there for me. The last time I had a talk with her I told her how much I loved her and meant to me. And I told her the only reason I wasn’t there more was because I couldn’t afford the gas and she smiled like she always did and said she already knew that. I yet again had said the obvious. I had showed her the Brighid puppet and she held it and said she loved it. Laura was a Brighid Flamekeeper as well as many of the rest of us.
Laura had such humour and love and was such a force of nature when she thought you should do something. She knew Mary and I wanted to have a Druid Grove and with Denise the four of us made it happen. Skypeing between Oregon, West LA and the Valley, planning and writing and having ritual over the internet we became Companions in the Hazelwood Grove in the Druid Clan of Dana. Later we did the Bard ritual, we had a ritual in Rancho Santa Ana Botanical Gardens to bring other Companions in and then the Ovate ritual with just the four of us again and we finally had an in person ritual for the four of us, our beloved Arch Druidess created us Druids last January. The intent was always that she would take us to the Arch Druidess step ou selves and we all committed to keep studying to get there. It was a morning out on the Sepulveda Wildlife Refuge of mist and magic and a Great Blue Heron keeping careful watch on us as we did the ritual on the eastern shore of the lake. It was a moment of magic. One of those moments you hold in your heart forever. I don’t know if the three of us will ever be Arch Druidesses but I know I can never be the one Laura was. When Caroline Wise made her an Arch Druidess she told us she didn’t know she had been a Druid but she had been and she was such a gift to Denise and Mary and I and she made one of our dreams come true for us, guiding, gently pushing and letting us become who we wanted to be. We had always been more Druid than Isian Priestess and she said to me she knew that once.
She had a way to making you grow, sometimes gently, sometimes not. She had a way if you weren’t ordained of letting you know it was time. She’d approach and ask what date you wanted to be ordained on. No escaping a question put in that fashion for me it was February 6, 2000 on Brighid and as usual for me not where I planned it. I had wanted it to be in Arcadia Wilderness Park but we got there and they were closing it on weekend because there had been a brush fire and they were closing it on weekends temporarily so we ended up in Bailey Canyon Wilderness Park in Sierra Madre. This made my attending coven sisters crack up. Bailey Canyon is right below the mountain our coven was named for when we started back in 1986. Sierra Madre means the mother mountain. Laura just said there are no accidents and we had my ordination under our mountain. It will always be one of the best moments of my life.
I will cherish the memory of every Faire, every Isis birthday ritual. every Yule ritual and I will cherish the memory of her strength, her love and her humour. She told me every ritual I ever ran should have bubbles because that was important for me to do.)
I love you, Laura Janesdaughter and I thank you for your many gifts to me over the years. I hope I gave you something in return.
Isis and Nepthys and BunniHotep have you now.
I wokke up this morning and I had evidently been crying in my sleep. Last time I did that was when my little brother died.
Always seems like your body hasn’t trusted you enough to cry on your own. Or that sadness can’t be contained in waking moments alone.