The past few months have brought a lot of change into my life. In fact, you probably noticed a lack of postings in November and December, with good reason! This past fall I was busy traveling, dealing with family medical emergencies, completing my degree, and moving to a new city.
To say the fall was crazy busy is a grand understatement. But I wouldn't have it any other way! Well, maybe except for the family emergency bit, although I think there are valuable life lessons to be gained from that as well.
With everything that's been going on, I've admittedly had little time to think about mythology. And yet...the other day I found myself musing about mythology and how it can be of help to us during times of stress and change.
Moving to a new city with my husband, a city without friends and family (yet!), was a daunting experience. It was hard for me to leave my family, both my stepdaughters and the family who raised me - my parents, grandmother, sister, etc. I'd never dreamed that I would embark on such an adventure - all without these members of my family in close proximity.
And then I thought about Persephone, and her journey to the Underworld where she met her future husband, Hades. There is much to learn in this story about the natural break that one must make from the family we are reared in, in order to strike out on our own. In Persephone's case, it comes by force. But eventually, she becomes stronger for it as she takes up her role as Queen of the Underworld.
Of course, she doesn't forget her family and goes back to stay with her mother, Demeter, for several months out of each year. Although I have left my childhood family behind to start a new adventure with my own husband, it doesn't make them insignificant in my life. To the contrary, their support and love and my relationship with them couldn't be stronger.
There are many, many ways that mythology can provide us with helpful teachings for our daily lives - even ancient mythology! People have dealt with many of the same emotional issues for thousands of years. Perhaps what I am feeling today, the excitement of starting a new life mingled with the sadness of leaving my old one behind, is something that was equally felt by young people throughout history.
That's a reassuring thought.