Dear Fairy Friends,
Growing up Fey, I was surrounded by beauty. I however did not see any of that beauty in myself when I looked at my reflection in the Stargazer’s Pond. You can only look into it on a night full of starlight, which will show you truth in the waters. It is used to look into your world, to see ourselves as we are and to envision ourselves as we will be in the future. The waters of this pond are perfectly still, even the frogs dare not splash in it. When I looked into the pond, I never saw beauty. In fact, I saw nothing at all, not even the stars reflected. Just the dark, glassy, breathless waters. There was something about the pond that I didn’t know, but I will come to that a little later in this tale.
There was something about me that made me stand apart when all I wished for was to blend in. I was born rather pigeon-toed, which was already unusual for one of my kind. To add insult to injury, my wings had an odd arc to them, they were bent forward at the tips.
Therefore, I was clumsy on my feet, as well as in the air. No one invited me to chase shooting stars with them, nor did they ask for my help painting rainbows because my flying made me paint crazed, crooked stripes through the sky. Only the naive dared to partner with me during the celebratory dances in the Fairy Rings. It only took one turn around for them to realize that I would trip them, sending us careening into the mushrooms that formed the circle more often than not. Let me tell you, flinging others into mushrooms is not the best way to make friends!
I walked carefully, doing my best to keep my feet straight. It was agonizing. I tried to keep my wing tips pointed up only to feel them ache as well. If I managed one, I neglected the other because the effort and pain were too great. The looks that I got from the other Fey stung me deeply and made my heart ache, just as my body ached trying to look less…like myself.
Velocity seemed to aggravate my clumsiness so I went gently, slowly and tried to help my wayward feet. As I walked, I began to notice things I never had before and I was drawn to the incredible plants that surrounded me. I was fascinated and stopped often to ask creatures, great and small, what they knew about the plants they drank from, took shelter in or ate for nourishment.
I learned from the bees and hummingbirds which flowers were the sweetest. The bears explained which berries they would eat and which were poison for them. The caterpillars demonstrated how they would blend into foliage to camouflage themselves. Being so still, I demonstrated enough patience that elves and dwarves approached me and I was able to learn from them as well. It isn’t easy and their lessons are lengthy. Elves, being immortal, really have no regard for time. Dwarves, having been born from the oldest stones on the earth, share knowledge about as speedily as the mountains shift. I even came upon a dragon with gems wedged between her scales that had begun to cut into her skin. I healed her and altered her lair so that the sharpest treasures would not dig into her hide again. To thank me, she showed me how the different phases of the moon could enchant and enhance the healing or harming properties of plants. This is highly guarded knowledge because of its duality – it can lengthen lives or end them – and is not to be taken lightly.
I had been so absorbed in plant lore that I had walked with my crooked feet in front of all of these beings: the most enlightened, the eldest, the most magical. Not the birds, nor the elves, dwarves, or the dragon seemed repelled by my inherent clumsiness of foot or wing. It was when I forgot to care and worry about my feet and wings that I found great purpose in healing and protecting. It was then that I was gifted with my true name, Angelica, after the plant I had the greatest affinity with.
My feet hardly straightened by the time I reached maturity at 100 years old. Now well past my early adulthood, my feet are as crooked as ever, the bend in my wings still prominent.
The same feet that once made me painfully aware that I was different were quite clever in the end, slowing me down enough to find my calling. The wings that keep me grounded could easily shield plants and animals and were ideal for collecting herbs. Being made differently, from a slightly askew magic perhaps, had given me great gifts.
With age and perspective, I have come to appreciate that there is no such thing as perfection within my kind, my world nor yours. Instead of striving to fit in, for this elusive notion of how we ought to be, let us just be, as we were intended to be from the moment when we were created.
I see children made from all kinds of wonderful, who feel they are never represented in the realm of the fantastic. I am so grateful that I found artist Carolyn Gerk of Velvet Hand Designs who has helped me bring to life some of the different types of Fey, just as they are. All children should have access to the realms of wonder and magic, I hope to add more diversity in the future to the collection. It is important to me because only by believing that I had a place, that I was special, was I able to finally see beauty in myself when I looked into the pond. That is the great secret: you must believe in yourself first to see who you are and decide who you want to become.
May we celebrate crooked feet, bent wings and everything in between. I already believe in you. Believe and look at yourself as you truly are for the first time. You are breathtaking.
Your Lady Star