"Witches Aren't Scared"

“Witches aren’t scared.”

A friend said this to me. She said this to me in a session because this friend is also a client. (This is one of the ways of breaking patriarchy.)

She had just asked me if I’m ever scared. Which is funny, because I’ve taken some of the biggest risks of my career, if not my life, in front of her.

Also, I think she’s amazing. So I want her to think I’m perfect. And also, I don’t want her to think I’m perfect, because I know that is the end of intimacy.

So I say “Dude. I am scared all the time.” And she laughs.

We had just been talking about now. This moment, by which I mean the crossroads where all these choices feel so important and big. We are women in Seattle, which is a place that is inventing the future and facing and solving and also facing and not solving the big problems. We are women in this place, which feels like a laboratory for this moment, and we have resources and voices and influence. (As I write that “we have resources and voices and influence,” I feel ashamed, like there is something wrong with women stating their power. But I know that is a lie, so I name it and say it anyway.) 

We are women who have power to do what must be done now. In fact, she had just said that, better than I could. She looked at me with fierce hazel eyes that are full of intelligence and trees and said “We can get shit done.”

But still. Yes. I’m scared. So is she. Because we are here on this edge, where the stakes feel high. And I don’t know what I’m doing and I’m doing it anyway. So is she. I say so.

She says, “I’ve never seen you scared." Then, with a laugh: "Witches aren’t scared.”

We both laugh. It’s true. The image of a witch is of a woman who is flying through the night on her broomstick, in command of the elements, navigating the night, in her wisdom and fearlessly magical.


But that’s not real. What’s real is this, facing each other, facing the other women and men and queers and trans people in our lives, facing this moment and (for me at least) still reaching for my broomstick.