Stepping Out of the Darkness


Recently, I was called to give a speech.
Here is the text of that speech:

“She’s eight years old and she’s drowning, held underwater in a swimming pool.

Yesterday, she loved running on a hilltop in Redwood City. The grass feeling cool between her toes. Yesterday, she climbed a tree.

But today, her brother holds her down, underwater. She is drowning. And he is waiting. Waiting for her to stop moving.

What does this do to a little girl?

I can tell you. My brother finally stepped away.

But the tough times didn’t end there. My brother kept up his torture of me until I couldn’t take it anymore.

So at 8 years old, I stepped to the edge of my bunk bed. I wrapped some yarn around my neck again and again. I stepped off my bunk bed – And I hung there for a moment—until the yarn broke.

My story is about stepping OUT of the darkness.

Sure, I’ve experienced dark times, but I’ve also experienced other things.

I once turned to a friend and said, “How many depressed people does it take to change a light bulb? None. They just sit there in the dark.” [audience laughter]

I’m glad to be speaking with you today about stepping OUT of the darkness.

Along that line, I’m going to share with you the 3 Steps of Empowerment.

The First Step is Diagnosis. When I was 11, I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder – another term for this is clinical depression. Clinical Depression is not just feeling the blues. It isn’t just sometimes feeling sad. It doesn’t just go away like Seasonal Affect Disorder.

Clinical Depression is like having tinnitus. That’s the condition where you have constant ringing in your ears. Except this situation is a horrible feeling of pain, sadness, and hopelessness. It can get so bad that death seems like the only way out. A friend of mine killed himself. He had clinical depression.

So Diagnosis is the First Step.

The Second Step is: The person must say, “I want help.”

I’m using the word “say” – but the situation is really about taking action. The depressed person needs to take action.

You and I cannot help a depressed person if they don’t want help. If they won’t take their meds, and if they won’t show up for therapy – there’s not much we can do.

I know that I have family members who want to find a “Happy button” on me. Well—I don’t have a Happy button on me.

Can I borrow yours? [I address an extrovert in the audience. The audience laughs.]

As I mentioned: the Second Step is when the person says, “I want help.” The depressed person has to choose it.

I wanted help. So I worked with psychiatrists and therapists. And I take appropriate medication.

The Third Step is: Maintenance.

Sometimes, I think of maintenance of my well-being as a daily fight. I have certain “weapons” to use to hold my ground against clinical depression.

First, I have a therapy animal, a cat I named Magick. I called him Magick because he makes food disappear! [audience laughter]

I love him and petting him helps me to feel better. He helps me switch to happier thoughts. I feel he takes away some of the pain.

Second, I stay active. I go out with friends when possible. I enjoy laughing with friends. I also stay active by taking daily walks with my sweetheart.

Third, I have things that I do for myself when I’m alone. Knitting and writing are great ways to help me cope.

I have shared with you 3 Steps of Empowerment that mean a lot to me.
1) Diagnosis
2) The person must say “I want help.”
3) Maintenance

And finally about that eight-year-old girl who felt no one cared … She is still inside me, but now I am a full grown woman.
I am here.
I care.
I will protect her.”

People have told me that the above is a powerful speech.

As a Wiccan, I still feel, at times, that I must protect myself.

Do you feel the same?

How can you protect yourself from those who do not care or do not understand our Pagan path?

I’ve learned that I need to face reality. To this day, my parents still do not respect my Wiccan path. They never ask me questions nor hear me out.

Part of taking care of myself is to gather with like-minded people who love me.

May you find your tribe.

Blessed Be,


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For more of Moonwater SilverClaw, consider some of her books:

Goddess Has Your Back

Goddess Has Your Back: How Wicca Can Help You Raise Your Self-Esteem and Make Your Life Magickal



The Hidden Children of the Goddess Book

The Hidden Children of the Goddess Embrace Wicca, Become Strong, Be at Peace with Yourself and the World Around You



Real Magick

Beyond the Law of Attraction to Real Magic: How You Can Remove Blocks to Prosperity, Happiness and Inner Peace



Goddess Walks Beside You: How You Can Listen, Learn and Enjoy the Wiccan Path

Facing Love, Life, and Death


On August 11, 2014, Robin Williams committed suicide. This really hit home for me. Being a person who has lived on both sides of the suicide-situation, I feel that it’s time I talk about it.

I have attempted multiple times to commit suicide in my life. I’ve often felt the unspeakable pain that drives one to such thoughts and actions.

The truth is: A lot of people have no way of comprehending the emotions of the person considering suicide. As a friend said to me, “It’s similar to grief. You do NOT know it, until you’re IN grief. Until someone close to you has died.”

On the other side of the situation, I have also endured when a very dear friend committed suicide. My heartbreak seared deeper than any hot poker could. Searing my flesh would have been a kindness. This pain of grief hits you deep in the soul.

Recently, I was appalled at how some pundit on a cable channel called Robin Williams “a coward” for taking his own life. Did this pundit personally know Robin? Does this pundit struggle with depression personally?

And I have other questions.

Is it possible that depression can become an unbearable pain? (I have felt such pain and fortunately the Gods broke the cord that could have ended my life.)

Is it possible that it is the right of each individual to choose how to live and how and when to die?

And then let’s add the spiritual questions.

Does the person on the verge of suicide feel (or care) that one will have to come back (be reincarnated) and learn the same thing he or she was struggling with and go through it all over again?

If suicidal thoughts arise for you, do you want to go through it again (in a reincarnated form)? Or hunker down and go through it once? (I know that to press on through suicidal thoughts can require professional and medical help.)

Still, I feel compassion for someone who has succumbed to suicide’s call.

I am not angry at my deceased friend. I only feel sorrow for him and that I could not help. I try not to blame myself for possibly missing a sign or two that he was in distress.

If you are having thoughts of suicide, please call the hotline below.

1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Or go to the web sites




Moonwater SilverClaw


For more of Moonwater SilverClaw, consider some of her books:

The Hidden Children of the Goddess Embrace Wicca, Become Strong, Be at Peace with Yourself and the World Around You


Beyond the Law of Attraction to Real Magic: How You Can Remove Blocks to Prosperity, Happiness and Inner Peace


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How Wicca Saved My Life – Confidence


Blooming against the odds.

Finding the gods was a lifesaver, literally. Before I had the gods in my life, I was a kid with huge self-esteem problems. I had made multiple suicide attempts.

When I was eight, I was so depressed about my life that I tied a string around my neck, intending to hang myself. But the gods were on my side even then. The string broke. The gods knew I had a purpose; I had work to do for them. But at the time when it happened, I thought, I’m so lame, I can’t even kill myself right! I couldn’t see it for the blessing that it was. I just fell into a deeper depression. There were other attempts, and other failures.

My childhood was filled with physical and mental torture perpetrated by my older brother –and my parents’ neglect.

Somehow I survived to my 16th year. One day, I walked into a Barnes and Noble bookstore in my hometown. That year, I heard a new word Wicca. I asked the sales clerk, “Do you have any books on Wicca?” Her eyes lit up and with great excitement she led me to a shelf and started pouring books into my arms.

That evening, alone in my room, I started to read Scott Cunningham’s book, The Solitary Practitioner. My heart filled up. I finally found my home.

Now I reveled in a new world. Soon I was meditating, and after some sessions, the Gods made contact with me.

The gods embraced me with pure love. My body filled up with their love for me. From my head it moved through my entire body, down to my fingers and toes. Happiness was so foreign to me; I had never felt this way before. But I shifted to a deep part of myself I hadn’t known and here I knew that I was one with the Gods. Forever.

The gods found me beautiful. They took pride in me.

I never knew anyone could have this much love for anyone, especially me! This epiphany was a brilliant light into my chasm of darkness and despair. Now I could start to see myself for what I really was worth.

With this knowledge, I found a new confidence in life. Once the gods opened me up and shone their loving light in me, I was transformed into love. Love for myself and for others.

The “harm none” of Wicca rang true for me. I didn’t want anyone to go through what I had endured. I wanted to treat everyone with respect, compassion and love. So I started on my path and became a Wiccan priestess.

It’s a beautiful path.

Blessed Be,

Moonwater SilverClaw