I’ve always teetered the line between the earthy, bohemian, folk child and the dark, death-obsessed, goth kid. As a child, between family camping trips and exploring wooded areas, I was reading books about the holocaust, the civil war, and serial killers. I think that statement holds the core of two of my oldest, most consistent truths.
First, I am a Taurus, Capricorn rising; an Earth baby through and through. I was raised by a tree hugger and a woodsman. My childhood vacations were spent in a tent on the bay rather than a hotel on the beach, camping in the woods rather than Fiesta Texas, state parks rather than Disney World. During the time I lived with my parents, I ran away to the secluded creek hidden behind the rows of houses when I needed to be alone. My first apartment was chosen because it was within walking distance of a park with miles upon miles of trails far enough from the roads to drown out the sounds of cars. Nature has provided me with more peace than society could ever hope to give me. During my teen years and early twenties, I stumbled my way through a handful of religions that I thought might possibly teach me the meaning of life, but by the time I reached 24, I realized that the meaning I had been looking for was under my own two feet all the while. I believe in the Earth and everything that comes with it. I believe in the seasons, the cycles, the elements, and the universe that cradles it all.
The Earth is my religion. Nature is my Vatican.
My mind is my god. My heart is my goddess.
My body is my temple. My mouth is my altar.
Second, history has always fascinated me, the darker the better. I love learning about mythology, folklore, and superstitions; symbolism, death customs, and monsters; Jack the Ripper, the Illuminati, and Roswell. More than anything, however, I love finding the truth. Starting with a kernel and working my way back through history until I find where a story, an idea, began: it thrills me. Fitting the pieces together, it makes me feel like a historical detective. I have always admired folklorists and storytellers, but also anyone who isn’t afraid to explore the darker parts of life.
You know that game?
The one with the dinner guests?
Joseph Campbell, Jung, and Neil Gaiman would be a dream dinner party.
I spent most of my youth battling between these two sides of myself. Trying to decide which one I really am. Nearing thirty, I’ve started questioning the point in it? It’s such an insignificant battle. Why force myself to choose? At my core I am and always have been:
One part light and one part dark.
One part bohemian and one part goth.
One part owlet and one part batling.
This is who I am and it’s about time that I embrace it.