Newsletter

Swirl Out of Winter, Welcome Spring!

Are you ready for EPITHEULIUS, the God of Wind, the God of CHANGE…?

Epitheulius.

[EPA-thu-lee-US]

No, you won’t find this one with Zeus or Hera, Hades or Persephone; you won’t find this with the historical Pantheon because this name, this God, came to me a long time ago, when I was about 14 years old. I stuffed it, not knowing what the “information” or “feeling” was about. I had no idea how to interpret how Spirit was speaking to me back then and so I ignored it. 

I think a lot of kids must experience “hunches” of intuitive gifts, abilities to connect with the Spiritual world, heightened sensory aptitudes that all get buried because the world in which those kids live doesn’t reflect back to them value or validity in understanding or experiencing the world in that way. 

Which is a shame. Sure, there’s some super cool parents out there who are open to allowing and permitting their child to be permeable to All That Is. I remember reading in Michael Pollan’s book, “How to Change Your Mind” some scientist who had studied brain activity in newborns and 1-year olds. The gist was that ‘basically these babies are tripping,’ meaning that they really haven’t received the dense plaster of the conditioned world yet. Their mental and spiritual follicles are standing at attention. They’re picking up ALL KINDS OF STIMULI, SIGHTS AND SOUNDS. Then, the controlling agents in the form of parents and the predominant values of society creep in, descend on their party, choking out even the possibility that there are forces and energies that dwell “just beyond.” 

However, that doesn’t mean those forces are not there. Lately, I’ve felt a strong desire to honor “lost gifts of childhood.” In fact, I spent an entire week-end recently at the Marie Joseph Spiritual Retreat Center in silence to trace back and recapture some of my lost gifts of childhood. 

When I got there on Friday afternoon, I dropped my bags in my tiny room and went to the beach. It was very windy–Epitheulius must have know I was coming–and I found myself ascending a rocky path to a peninsula of well-appointed houses, then cruised around the small, quaint New England streets until I found a Maine Audubon trail, which I sloshed down, dodging melting snow and mud. To my delight, there was no one else on the trail. 

When I got back to the room, I did what I always do when I check into a hotel: I made an altar. I knew I needed to focus my energies, to have something to pray by, and pray with. Afterall, I was in a prayerful community with devout nuns who had the sweetest smiles and greetings you’ve ever seen. My Goodness, I haven’t been anywhere that quiet in a very long time! I wasn’t going to miss an opportunity to get on their station, if you know what I mean. And I did. 

“No Candles” the rules said; I did not oblige.

But I did turn my phone OFF and made the altar with the different treasures of nature I’d found on my walk–pine cone, rock, two shells with various dried herbs and flowers from Avalon. I knew that I was to visit with the child of me, the child of 7. The one who still very much believed that her “babies” (aka stuffed animals) heard every word she said. The one who was forever coming up with some elaborate story, some elaborate game or just playing tricks. 

I settled into my rocker, conveniently located right in front of the window. I held a crystal I’d brought and an old rock I found in Fort Collins the first year I attended Colorado State University. 

The view was pretty sweet…

To my surprise, a guide showed up: My 2nd grade teacher, Ms. Belk. Now, I grew up in a small town (pop.: 2,000) in North Carolina. In 1978, when I was 7, Siler City was still pretty abhorrently racist. My own father was extremely racist. And Ms. Belk impressed on my little soul something that no one else at that tender age had done by doing an extraordinary act every single day

Before I tell you what it was, I’d like to describe Ms. Belk: Long, ironing board straight brown hair. Bubblicious lip gloss, probably strawberry-flavored. Dangling silver hoops, lots of blue eye shadow. A mouthful of big white teeth that were always in an open laugh, and that laugh was LOUD. Can you picture her? 

Now: imagine our little bodies, our faded Wranglers and stained cotton shirts from that day’s jello or pudding we’d had at lunch. There’s a certain smell, too, that goes with one’s elementary school. I’ll not attempt to describe yours but mine was the cafeteria, of fried food and a slight burnt-coffee tinge, some sort of sanitizer to clean up vomit. And little kid-sweat. It makes sense that I can remember the 1st school I ever attended better than all the rest (and there were many-). The first of anything really leaves an impression. 

There we are, lined up at the end of the day, about to emerge onto the blacktop, to go screaming off to the bus or to our waiting moms, their Chevrolet wagons idling softly, a long cigarette poised in their fingers. 

The bell rings, it’s time to go. Before we stepped over the threshold and into the hall, Ms. Belk kissed every single one of us goodbye, assuring us that she would see us tomorrow. She might throw in a ‘Be Good, now’ just to keep it fresh. 

And this struck me as a radical act–that she would kiss white and black kids, girls and boys. She did not see color, or gender. And of course you can’t kiss school children in this day! I didn’t know why she did it but I knew that her indifference to race and gender made me think she was the coolest woman that ever lived. 

So when she showed up to guide me back to my lost childhood gifts, I wasn’t surprised. When I was able to thank her for modeling this radical act of acceptance, I was able to drill down on what it was I so admired: She exhibited Love. Radical, fierce Love for ALL OF US. She was a living, breathing example of all the things I learned in bible study about how Jesus said we should act. 

And you know what? ‘Fierce Love’ was the first stop we made on my tour of childhood. That LOVING FIERCELY is actually a super-power that gets its light turned down as we grow and mature. It may get tainted by hurt, or side-stepped because we’re too busy trying to secure a sense of safety. Whatever knocked mine out, Ms. Belk said: You can be like me. Let my example lead your 7 year old self right up to this moment, right now. 

Because if we don’t need some FIERCE LOVE right now in this world, I don’t  know what we need. 

My Spring Wish for you is for Epitheulius, the God of Wind and Change, to blow out whatever it is that keeps you from knowing–intimately knowing–what loving fiercely looks and feels like. This break-Down to break-Through we’re experiencing has a purpose: for us to CHOOSE LOVE, like Ms. Belk did, without a thought. 

Without any side-stops along the way. 

Our children are secretly hoping that’s our top choice. For them, it’s the only choice. 

Shine On, 

Mary Katherine 

FEATURED PRACTITIONER 

Troi Boulanger is a LCSW, intuitive guide, dog-whisperer and overall fantastic human being. I met Troi [pronounced ‘Troy’] several years ago at a monthly shamnic gathering I used to co-lead called the Confluence. We became fast friends and began doing “reiki shares” every other Friday with another healer. Troi epitomizes Fierce Love, in every gesture, every conversation, every prayer. In fact, she boldly stepped out and rented her home in Westbrook for a few months to travel in the Southwest, hiking about in New Mexico with her dog Violette. In a few weeks, she’ll return to her therapy practice in Saco. 

Troi has been incorporating energy work in her practice for over 20 years. She works with people to identify patterns that hold them back, and then works to develop skills to move forward in their lives as their whole being, bringing healing to mind, body, spirit and life. Troi is also developing a website for Intuitive Guidance where she’ll help people deepen their understanding of their whole selves, while learning principles of energy healing to keep themselves at their highest best.

This summer, Troi will be offering in-home pet services on Rover. You can look for her there for your furry creatures and on Psychology Today for counseling.

For more information about these services and more, contact Troi at: tboulanger1@me.com

ADD ‘WRITING COACH’ TO MY CV! 

Need a boost on starting that memoir? Are you struggling with a concept you’d like to commit to paper but need a solid structure and a kind cheerleader to take your vision to the next level? I am happy to report that I can add Writing Coach to the many services I offer. There’s no project too small or large! Here’s a testimonial of a current client I’m helping to launch: 

Mary Katherine’s skills as a writer, editor and coach are a perfect match for my needs. She’s helped me to focus my book project and create a supportive structure to move the work forward. Mary Katherine reads drafts closely, provides helpful feedback and poses questions that make me consider what it is I’m trying to say, and how I want to say it. Her guidance and support have been critical! 

~ Debra S. of New Gloucester, Maine 

It’s not always easy to write. In fact, for some people, it’s torture. Not for me! I love it and will always find the most creative way for you to enjoy it as well! Send inquiries to marykatherinespain@gmail.com 

AND SPEAKING OF WRITING…

I’m co-teaching a new writing class! My friend and professional peer Jess Verrill and I have teamed up to offer a new 10-week class that offers you not only writing instruction and feedback from me but energy up-grades and executive coaching from Jess. Together, we will take your project and your confidence to its highest level of poise and professionalism. 

To learn more about the class and see if it’s a good fit for you, click here. Hope to see you there!  

A FEW MORE TID-BITS…

__My Established Client follow-up rate will be changing from $75 to $85 for follow-up sessions starting on April 1st

__The Portland Office still has 1 or 2 slots available on Sat 3/26 and Fri 04/01. for healing sessions. Do you need a tune-up? Email me to get booked! 

__Amy Chaney and I will be offering the Mayan Spirit Bathing Ritual and Ceremony on Saturday June 18th. This event was a HUGE SUCCESS last September! What better time than the Summer Solstice to meet the Mayan Fertility Goddess Ixchel and learn about ritual bathing? Interested in saving a spot? Email me! (*more details to come in my May newsletter!) 

__My ‘Click Your Heals’ class has been a great success; while teaching it, I realized I’d like to gather regularly with Seekers and Light Workers to explore, witness, study and support one another through these changing times. Ideally,  I’d like to co-host a ‘Shamanic Share & Care’ twice a month for shamanic practitioners or anyone who has foundational skills in shamanic practice. Interested in being a co-host? Have some good ideas? Email me

And finally…Meet our new logo for Avalon Acres! Although the website is still being tweaked and fine-tuned, you’ll want to be on the look-out for our up-coming events, workshops, fire circles and more! Make sure you are on my newsletter list to recieve updates!

Happy Spring!

Avalon Acres is the home to many 9 Pillars events!

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