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I grew up in San Antonio, Texas. Catholicism was and still is huge in the community I was raised. But like in most cultures and religions, there are superstitions and heeded tales of strayed paths. The idea of witches and witchcraft or bruja and brujeria was taboo and was meant to be feared. If you practiced witchcraft, it meant you were no longer part of the family because you sold your soul to el diablo. Funny really. How can they know of such things if they didn’t do them themselves? I found my religious preference in high school when I was introduced to a Wiccan priestess. She told me about paganism, witchcraft and Wicca. From then on, I was hooked.
I begin researching in libraries and bookstores for more information and the more I read, the more I felt like I had found my true calling. This new religion, path or whatever you want to call it, reached out to me. It touched my soul and enlightened my spirit. I felt right for the first time in my life, in my beliefs. However, I knew my family would not understand. So, like most witches, it became my secret. I celebrated my Sabbaths alone. I gave offerings in small, unnoticed gestures and gifts and was surprised how easy it was to piggy back on my family’s celebrations with mine.
Of course, paganism is the foundation for Christianity so it wasn’t that hard to do. I celebrated Samhain during Halloween, Yule during Christmas and Ostara during Easter. After graduating from high school, I begin to be more open with my friends about my religious point of view and found that they were surprising supportive. Yet, I was still hesitant to tell my family.
It was years before I got up nerve to come out of the broom closet. I was twenty-five years old with a baby on the way when I knew I had to decide. When you start a family, you think of everything you need to do for that child and religion was one of those things. As my family prepared Christian names and Baptisms to come, I knew I could no longer keep silent. I told my mother first, who was confused about my confession. Then my father, who didn’t seem to really care and then my extended family.
My extended family were the ones that reacted the way I had expected my parents to. I was told I was evil and didn’t know it because I was under some devil’s spell. I was cast out and told I was going to hell. I had expected this reaction for years and found it surprisingly easy to take. My parent’s reaction puzzled me. They silently supported me by not asking questions on my decision and simply accepted my faith. Once everyone knew about my Wiccan ways, I realized that it wasn’t as bad as I had thought it would be. Yes, I lost some family members who can’t seem to understand that Wicca is not evil but I’m okay with that. I would have been okay to be cast out from the whole family. Luckily, that didn’t happen.
In the end, I have to live my life for me. The family I was creating was going to be started with love, happiness and honesty and it was. I hope this story (yes, it's a true story) helps you if you are going through something similar.