A year ago today, I woke up after my initiation into Eclectic Religious Witchcraft. I was coming off of a three-day fast and was high as a kite from the experience. It hadn't been an ordeal, it hadn't been grueling, it had been performed by three wonderful women whom I love dearly and it was an experience that I will never forget. The hours I spent prior, during, and after that ceremony are amongst the hours I have felt the most loved in my life.

Back in those days, I realized I wanted to leave Eclectic Religious Witchcraft, but I had invested eleven and a half years into that--or a similar--Tradition as a solitary. I knew the God and Goddess well, and my initiation was to be a cumulation of my experiences with Them as well as a goodbye. I can't tell you, exactly, how to wrap you head around an initiation as a way of saying goodbye, but it was a heart-thing, so I guess you do not have to.

I was initiated by a close friend and her coven. They were aware of my situation and--as it was going to be one of the first initiations my friend performed as lead--agreed to take me on anyway. There was a trial period before that night, of conversations and the sharing of information. It was established I had more than the basics down, so the decision was made.

I won't tell you too much about the experience. There were lots of tears--not just mine--and I was dedicated not in the first place to the God and Goddess, but to my patron Goddesses at the time. Afterwards, I helped dedicate someone new to the path; something I'm still proud of and joyous about. To see the wholeness I felt at that moment reflected in the face of another is a powerful thing.

I have never regretted my initiation. I'm extremely glad I did it. From that point on, the chapter was closed and I could open myself up to a new one I had known was coming: Hellenismos. I left Eclectic Religious Witchcraft as a priestess, and stripped all of it off to follow my heart and my Theoi.

On this Samhain eve, I remember that night most of all. I think I always will. While I don't celebrate Samhain, I will think about those hours in the company of the women I love and remember their beauty, their passion for the Craft, their devotion and their openness and be forever grateful. They have given me two of the most precious gifts one could ever receive: perfect love, and perfect trust.