Hagalaz is the Rune of sudden change, those endings that lead to new beginnings. When Hagalaz arrives in a reading, it does not mean that things are going to be comfortable, but it does indicate that one is at a point of new growth. If one is on a spiritual path, as I have been with the Runes, this is a wonderful point to arrive at.

This past year I have learned to surrender. My beloved was in the nursing home, due to the changes imposed upon his body by old age, and he has recently transitioned to the Spirit world. He is home with me now, in his urn, and his presence has all of the old feeling to be found within our friendship, but I can no longer live my life by what has passed away. I am giving myself this year to dance with grief and see what lessons it brings me. I am giving myself this year to live alone and learn who I am without the habitual consideration for another person’s wants and needs. We were lucky to have found each other at the tail ends of our lives, and maybe there is a book there, about the dance of dementia and the spiritual components I met along the way, but that book is not fully emerging yet.

What I am doing is taking stock. The dance of grief is like the crest of a wave I ride, and when it breaks upon the shore, there is a measure of peace and tranquility, but also often the treasure of a good memory. I reflect how often I took for granted what I had until it wasn’t present any more. Alan was a wonderful cook, and last night as I was making Calamari Fra Diavolo, I was struck by the memory of how the last time I had it was when he made it for my birthday two years ago. Of course there was sadness at the memory, but it also led to reflection upon how often we showed love for each other and in such quiet ways that love wasn’t often noticed.

When we first met, Lois T. Martin, gifted psychic and numerologist said that Alan and I were Twin Flames. I did not realize at the time that Twin Flames can trigger the hell out of each other, and I was hoping for comfortable romantic love. HA! Comfortable? It could be. Romantic? We had that. Cards of sentiment and flowers on special occasions, yes, we had that. But when we triggered, we triggered hurtfully and often there was no talking around that. I remember one occasion when I recognized that I was triggered and my reactions were also triggering Alan. That was a point at which I became more able to pull back and simply be a witness to what was happening on the emotional plane. There finally came a point in Alan’s care when I had to totally face down all my triggers, to allow love to dominate all the rage and hatred I could feel when my triggers were fully engaged. It was not an easy moment, it took courage and a total willingness to face who I am with all my own shadows and rage. Love won out in the end, and though Alan was in a nursing home, we had that final year to say everything we needed to say. There were some funny and some not so funny moments, but I have good memories to tide me through until my time on earth is over and I am with my kindred spirit again.

Meanwhile, I have started a YouTube podcast that you can access through the domain name RuneOfTheDay.com in order to engage with my passion for the spiritual growth that daily work with the Runes provides. In case you don’t know what the Runes are, the simplest definition I can offer is that the Runes are symbols used as an alphabet and also as symbols for divination, or fortune telling. They come down to us from Germanic and Scandinavian heritage, definitely earlier than Roman times, and probably much older than that. The Runes are tied to the God Woden who sacrificed himself to himself on the World Tree Yggdrasil, in order to come into contact with the highest mysteries. He gathered up the Runes and taught their use as little mysteries to guide the process of life for humanity.

And while I’m on the topic, humanity is just that. Humanity. Some people try to interpret the Runes as symbols of white superiority. You will never find that with me. There is not “races,” but the human race. I consider myself a human being among other human beings who like me are running the “race” from cradle to grave. Nothing is more equalizing than death. Death is the great leveler. Equality is a myth. We come into life with what we are given genetically, in terms of supportive or non-supportive family, and in my opinion the best way to get through both the difficulties and joy in life is to give and receive in pertinent measure. Have and establish relationships with those you trust, maintain your part in the give and take of those relationships, and you will never or seldom be without someone to have your back when the hard times hit.

Published by susanofthenorth

Susan Hintz Epstein is an author, Rune diviner, healer, non-academic scholar, and former Methodist Lay Speaker who was called by the Runes in 2013. The time since then has been a serpentine shedding of one skin for another, as Susan's spiritual practice with the Runes and the World Tree, Yggdrasil, deepened. Susan keeps company with the Norns and other like-minded women.

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