Okay, maybe not profit, and not necessarily for fun, but I’ve never been good at titles.
So long time readers might remember my little conundrum at the start of the year about veiling. For those who recall, the only thing I took away from my brief teenage foray into Christianity was the nun thing. The concept of monastic life appeals to me very strongly, and the older I get, the more I want to more thoroughly immerse myself in that sort of life of devotion. And since I still have hangups about the term “godspouse” I still generally refer to myself as a Lokian nun. Heathenry and paganism aren’t organized enough to support monastic members, so I just incorporate it into regular daily life (I have indeed researched multi-faith monastic groups, but my general reaction was, “Ah, so this is how people get sucked into cults.”). Veiling has no historical basis in heathenry (nor do concepts like “nuns” or “monks”), but as I’ve echoed time and again, I’m neither an academic heathen nor a reconstructionist. But I still feel as though there’s something I can incorporate into my life that signals to society my intense devotional lifestyle.
I’ve written before that Sigyn pointed out that if I don a scarf, it would be not a show of modesty (not a thing I’m concerned about in the least) but a symbolic bit of protection, as if to shield my head from the venom dripping from above (because of course she’d say that). Loki teased that I’m just interested in it so I don’t have to wash my hair as often (he always does just cut to the kernel of truth lingering in the background, doesn’t he?). Obviously veiling is not at all something suggested by the gods nor demanded, it’s purely something that appeals to me and is something I’ve been pondering for quite a while now. I did get myself a linen Dublin style Viking cap a while back and consider it to be my “nun cap,” but was reluctant to just waltz around work and the city with it because I’m not one to draw attention to myself.
That is, I was reluctant to don it in every day life until this past Thursday.
Random side note: my dear Lokean friend E and I tend to communicate only through the Messenger app, and only texted each other at ECT since there’s no internet at the campground. This is an important side note because on Thursday morning, I discovered I’d received 2 texts from E overnight, around 3:30 am. Weird enough, even before seeing that the message was about veiling. Okay, interesting. We hadn’t broached that topic in quite a while, so it was all the more curious. I replied to her with an ever-so-eloquent “?”. She responded in kind. I was vaguely baffled by the witching hour messages, and she was even more surprised because she hadn’t messaged me. At all. I had to send a screenshot to prove she had.
After a minor bit of “Lea. I did not send that.” freaking out, she sent me the following screenshot to prove the messages were absent on her side:
She even did a word search in her texts to see if it was a weird glitch that was maybe just a redelivery of something she’d sent at the start of the year when I first started pondering the idea of veiling. Nope, not a text or message she’d ever sent.
So, you know. That’s cool.
At this point, we were both back on Messenger trying to act like this was a totally normal thing and not at all what-the-fuck-y. Finally, we were just like, “so, we should probably veil today. Seems like maybe we need the shielding from something. Like, you know, whatever.” Of course I was at work, and I was reluctant as hell to break out the Viking cap (which I kept in my purse for reasons beyond even my knowing). While I’m on medical hiatus from funeral work, I’m pulling a 9-5 in the car industry; working in a funeral home seems to be a more acceptable environment for random spiritual head coverings, but the service side of a dealership? Meh…
E suggested I just pin a napkin to my head, because she was sure everyone there knew I was weird enough that they wouldn’t even question it. True. So if a napkin wouldn’t be considered out of character for me, then fuck it, I’m breaking out the Dublin cap! I threw it on, pinned it in place, and pinned the little flappy things on the side back so it wasn’t so, well, flappy. It instantly had a psychological effect on me – I felt calmer, somehow, and more confident. More at peace, more secure. I’m all about the placebo effect if it works. And believe me, it worked.
No one really questioned it, but Statler told me that at one point when she’d stepped outside, some of the mechanics asked her about it. Not because they thought it was weird or I was losing my mind, but – get this – because they assumed it was a spiritual thing and they didn’t want to say anything stupid about it. That legitimately touched me, because not only did it please me that they recognize and respect just how important my spirituality is to me, but because that was just a genuinely surprising show of consideration from a group of guys who are prone to locker room talk and goofiness.
Now, it’s only been a few days of it, and it’s not something I’m going to do daily. But a few people have told me that my energy is different, that I seem more at peace with myself when I’m wearing it. I’m something of an empath, and it does seem to serve as a “shield” for me. Again, placebo effect or actual spiritual boon, doesn’t matter. The result is noticeable, to myself and to others.
There’s another reason why I’ve decided to don my “nun cap” more often in public: while I’m not one to seek attention, I’m wondering if it can be something of a gateway to education. With the fascist terrorists making the news and dragging heathenry’s symbols through the mud, how does one educate the public that those jackasses don’t represent an actual religion? It’s a long shot, but maybe someone will ask me someday about the cap, and I can tell them it’s something I do for myself to be ever mindful of my gods, who are inclusive, and to symbolically shield myself from the hatred that others spread, because that is not representative of the community to which I belong, and that bigotry hurts deeply even if I’m not a target of it.
And, of course, it’s a perfect solution to bad hair days. Loki’s not wrong about that!