The queen’s calling is to hold the weight of the present as it begs us for a way forward as we navigate life in our beautifully broken world. I write and talk a lot about the archetype of the queen and have come to see her as a part of all of us that is meant to hold the tension and the impossible decisions but still find a way forward. The queen creates boundaries, makes the hard calls, and invites all those to the table to hear from God and be nourished toward healing in wholeness.
We all have a queen part of ourselves we call upon to help create flourishing in this world, but right now, for many of us—including me—our queens have been overused and are exhausted. In this day and age, most of the questions and decisions that are put in front of us do not have clear and obvious answers. The worlds we are meant to steward are filled with an anxious despair and rage, and there are very few places left that feel familiar and safe. I have felt my own queen working overtime trying to forge new paths.
Over the last few years, I’ve been on a quest of sorts to understand my own inner queen and help her shed her old robes and dawn new life and energy and calling. A friend of mine once told me that in Jungian Psychology there are two energies of the spirit, the eagle and the toad. The toad is close to the ground, feeling the contours of the soil, aware of the moisture or drought, and moves slowly, connected to the earth. It lives underneath, protected, close, and held. The eagle, on the other hand, is soaring through the air, laser focused on where it is going, surveying the land in epic fashion, and seeing to the edges of the horizon. Both energies are needed in this world, but we are typically drawn to one or the other.
I have come to believe that the healthy queen is born when the eagle and the toad meet inside our bodies. When there is integration of all the parts of us that know the sky as well as the ground and are comfortable in both settings. Unfortunately, for those of us in the sky, we will need to land, and those on the ground will need to fly. The movement from one to the other is often painful but usually precipitated through death, fire, desire, or the sorrow of a broken heart.
I was soaring for years. When you soar, you can pass by heartache, destruction, and pain. You see smoke, but it is gone behind you as you look ahead. A young visionary queen spends a lot of time soaring like an eagle, anticipating what’s next and where we need to head; however, the world can be burning beneath you as you glide above the land in a blur of vision and denial.
Eventually, the soaring queen lands, but the ground is not soft when you are used to flying. It feels cold, dark, damp, dirty, and inhospitable. The landing often feels cruel, but the only way back to our bodies and to our human-sized selves is to land once again on the unforgiving, beautiful earth. I wish there was another way, but to deny the harshness of landing is to deny the grief and the agony of being stopped in your tracks with nowhere to go but reckon with all you have passed over on your way to the next thing.
Reconnecting to the earth and the seemingly mundane felt like agony for me. It was disorienting to walk in the dirt and feel the grass and the contours of earth. But as I gave myself over to the landing, the earth healed my overused queen and helped me reconnect to the deep, sensual knowing of the parts of me who need the calm and slowness of the earth to contain my exhaustion and anxiety. It also brought me face to face with deep grief over past failures and harm.
My soaring had kept me one step ahead of all that I feared was true of me, the world, and God.
As I landed, the kind voice of the Spirit invited me to face the agony of the rest of the story I had been avoiding.
The grief has been slow on the ground, and in my quest to heal, I have found comfort in the mundane tasks of making my bed, cooking dinner, and making candles. I have spent months watching the trees transition through the seasons, noticing the subtle shifts that the earth displays in epic fashion. At first, I thought the ground would kill me, but it has become a deep and solemn friend that holds my body and reminds me of my limitations and my need to rest.
For the soaring queen, the ground is the space of holding and rebirth that can only come when we are willing to come home to our bodies and our breath. The queen part of us will still be able to make the hard decisions, but she will have more clarity around what’s true and the reality that the world is far more difficult than you had imagined, but it is also vastly more beautiful than you ever thought possible.
In landing, we will slow down and tend to the small, thus enabling the large, unruly decisions to align, helping forge new pathways, dream new dreams, and find a new way to bring flourishing to the kingdoms we are meant to steward.
Cathy Loerzel is a military brat, a self-diagnosed 3 on the enneagram, a mother of a 5-year-old and 7-year-old boy, and a wife to mountaineer/farmer/therapist. Cathy is passionate about cooking, decorating, hosting parties, and nagging her family about keeping the house clean. Generally astonished by her family’s capacity to wreak havoc on a tidy house, she is bound and determined to raise boys who clean up after themselves. More than a decade ago Cathy founded The Allender Center with Dan and Becky Allender, and she has spent the last 10 years helping to create the Trauma Informed Narrative Therapy methodology, design the programs, concretize their group theory, facilitate, and teach. This past year, she wrote a book called Redeeming Heartache with Dan Allender. Cathy comes alive around water—lakes, oceans, rivers, creeks, swamps—and dreams of one day having a house where she can drink coffee every morning while looking at water.