This was my very first experience with bird medicine and finding a significant feather.
It was bright and early, New Year’s Eve morning. I’d just had the strangest dream… I was attending a new school, and when I went in to the restroom, I looked in the mirror and noticed I had a thunderbird carved on four of my teeth. What was weird is that when I tried to tell someone this I called the carvings the Thunder Beings rather than thunderbirds. In my dream nobody gave a hoot, so I just went on about the business of dealing with a new school. When I woke from the dream I actually checked my teeth because it had seemed so real. I got up, my husband was gone to work, and my kids were fast asleep. So I decided to go outside and think on the dream for a bit.
I remember walking around my yard and thinking about the thunderbird and the thunder beings, and wondering who they were. I thought to myself if I were to find a bird feather then it would mean that the dream had been significant. It was cold and damp outside, and I was still in my pajamas and slippers. The yard was just the slightest bit muddy, and I was just getting ready to head back inside when I spotted a pink feather, off a dress up item my daughter had received for Christmas. I picked it up and laughed, as it didn’t quite fit what I had in mind for a metaphysical moment. I then noticed that I’d stepped in dog poo, which made for an even a less metaphysical moment, so I flipped the pink feather to the ground in frustration and cleaned off my slipper!
I pretty much forgot about the dream, and let the frustrations of the morning fall behind me. Later that day I was online, and I thought of the dream, and decided to do a search on the Thunder Beings. What I found was that the Thunder Beings were representations of the Great Spirit to the Native Peoples, and that to dream of one, and specifically to dream of one being carved on your teeth, meant you were called to follow the path of the Heyoka Shaman, or a Contrary or Sacred Clown, and would show people how to see things from a different point of view.
Now this meant both a lot and nothing to me. I’d been studying shamanism, but I’d chosen to study Celtic shamanism, as that is my ancestry, and I had found a local teacher, and I didn’t know any local Native American teachers (which being in Southern California is honestly a bit strange).
As I’d not studied Native American shamanism, or any of their lore, I decided to do a search on Heyoka. Now this was a while ago, so only one site came up in my search – the one I’d just visited when searching on Thunder Beings. I read a bit further, and found that one of the gifts of the Heyoka is the ability to turn an experience that caused great shame into one of healing.
I thought about my own past, and the things I’d been ashamed of, and how they had damaged me and held me back, and suddenly thought of that pink feather I’d carelessly and thoughtlessly left in the yard.
I’d been arrogant and believed I would (and should) receive a magnificent feather…
I remember feeling ashamed at how I’d reacted to something that had been such a blessing. I went to the back door and opened it, intending to find that feather, and there it sat. The wind had blown it up against my back door! I then happened to glance at my slippers, which I’d left next to the back door to be cleaned later because of the dog poo, and I laughed and laughed and laughed.
Perfect. A pink feather and dog poo – it was just perfect.
And notably, I dreamt this on a date that added to a “1” numerologically – the start of a new path, a new adventure.
Indeed it was.