On August 31st this year I celebrated the ten year anniversary of meeting my patron God, Gwyn ap Nudd, at the leaning yew on Fairy Lane in my home town of Penwortham.
For those who don’t know the story, Gwyn appeared to me in a visionary encounter at the head of my local fairy funeral procession. He revealed His name and offered me the opportunity to journey with him in spirit to Annwn, (the Brythonic Otherworld) on the condition I give up my ambition to be a professional writer.
Recognising Him as the deity who had long been calling me to the Otherworld and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to establish a relationship with the God to whom my soul already belonged, I agreed.
The following January full moon I made my intitial vows to Him as my patron God, as his ‘apprentice’, and soon afterwards learnt the name of my path – awenydd ‘person inspired.’ On the super blood wolf moon in 2019 I made lifelong vows to Him.
It’s been ten years now and a lot has changed. On the day of my anniversary I visited the yew, made an offering of mead, gave my thanks to Gwyn and spent some time in meditation and in conversation with Him.
Since then I have been reflecting on the past ten years and the ways my devotional relationship with Him have shaped and changed my life.
During this period Gwyn has been there as a source of guidance and inspiration in my devotions, my journeywork, my prayers, guiding my work as His awenydd in poetry, storytelling, in writing my three books.
He’s not only supported me through my successes but my messiness and meltdowns. I have been able to talk to Him about anything, no matter how dark, because I know that, as the Lord of Annwn and Gatherer of Souls, He’s been with the mad, the dying, the dead, will be there for me at the end and after.
On a more difficult note He has consistently called me to my truth. This has been a tough process which has involved quite a lot of unmasking and a surrendering of my desires to fit in, reach a wide audience, and gain financial security.
After my latest straying into an attempt to become an ecologist I have again been stripped bare of all masks and brought back to my role as His awenydd and a step closer to my truth in His calling for me to become a nun of Annwn.
Finally, at the age of forty, ten years since our meeting, I have come to realise that He is my truth. That only when I honour Him and do His work, I am blessed.
I am currently moving into a new phase of my life exploring what becoming a nun of Annwn will mean within the context of building the Monastery of Annwn.
I am developing a monastic routine and practices and treating my bedroom, which already holds every part of my life, including my altars, as a monastic cell. My work as an awenydd, devotional creativity, sharing inspiration, at present through writing my next book ‘In the Deep’ for my Gods, remains central.
Having learnt from my mistakes I am looking forward to a life in which my relationship with Gwyn and my spiritual path are its truth and sacred heart.