Celebrating Beltane by yourself may not seem very appealing. After all, it’s all about, er…group activities. Right? Or at least a partner. I am here to tell you, fun can be had if you are in a solo situation!
Attitude: As we like to say around these parts, “It’s always Beltane in our hearts” If life is busy, and you’ve been preoccupied, fed up with dating, fed up with people, asexual, barely have time to breathe, much less do some Beltaning, then you have the makings of a Beltane Solo Celebration. Take a deep breath, and be really okay that you are solo for now. Notice I said “for now”. Things can change, but your focus is on the here and now. And it’s one of the most festive times of the year! Plants are finally blooming, and it’s getting warmer. It’s time to rejoice in the sunny days, and potential for possibility.
Decorations: Get as festive or as simple as you want! For myself, I like lots of fresh flowers, bright colors, ribbons and colorful candles. I made a simple Maypole with a branch and some ribbons and hot glued some little faux flowers on the top. It was festive indeed. Decorate your altar with bright linens, and have each of the four elements/directions represented with something new for you. Try a different incense for air, a brightly colored candle for fire, your favorite hued beverage for water, and your favorite crystal for earth. Add your choice of God/Goddess to your altar (candles, photos, sculptures, or even representation by something you create would be lovely), and really choose items that make your heart sing.
Attire: Wear your most festive attire for the celebration. Nothing beats a flower crown, and honestly, you will feel wonderful wearing one. Purchase one to wear, or go to a craft store and create your own. Etsy is also a good place to find some beautiful flower crowns, or check your local witch shop. Gather local greenery and flowers and create a crown or glue natural items and flowers to a headband. Wear your brightest clothes, or if you prefer to wear black, add a colorful accent. Be skyclad if you are comfortable, and rejoice in your body. It adds a lovely element to your celebrating. If skyclad, use a scented lotion or oils to honor yourself and Beltane.
Ritual: Make up your own ritual, or look up one online, and tailor it to your liking. Include all the elements you like, and really enjoy casting that circle. Call upon your beloved deities, invite in your ancestors, and have an amazing time. Technically, you’re not solo at that point, but make allowances for that. Or invite just one favorite deity if that is comforting to you. Or a favorite ancestor. Include their picture or photo to your altar, if this is what you decide to do.
Cakes and ale: What a great time of year for food! Try some mead, or some local wine, and get the tastiest treats for the festivities. Local produce is always preferred, so visit our local farmer’s market and really enjoy the process of selecting some special fruits, flowers, or local honey to add to your nibbles.
Activity: Watch The Wicker Man to really get into the spirit. I prefer the 1973 version, but you can also watch both one right after the other (there is a 2006 version) to compare. Take some time to really focus on what your passions are, and think about what ignites your spirit. Write them down, make a collage of pictures, create some art to inspire you on your quest, make lists, use glow-in-the-dark ink to write, begin a new journal. Let your imagination soar! If you are crafty, make items to give to your friends: bookmarks, meditation cards, flower paintings, or carve candles with Beltane wishes.
Fire: A bonfire is preferred, so set up your fire pit, or purchase one to add to your backyard. Or make one, if you are so inclined. Apartment dwellers, get your cauldrons out and have a wee fire in there. If it’s too much work, find a bonfire video on YouTube and gaze upon it via your computer screen. Get a red pillar candle and surround it with flowers, and light it. Set up many pillar candles if you’d prefer that.
Enjoy: If you are missing the zest with which to celebrate Beltane, make or purchase your favorite meal, light some candles and buy some flowers for yourself. Let Beltane into your heart however you feel comfortable. But do let some joy and brightness into your life, because especially nowadays, we can all use an uplifting of spirits.
I’ve celebrated Beltane solo, at a Beltane festival, with a loved one, and in ritual with community. I have to say, my solo Beltane celebration holds a special place in my heart. I loved the freedom of doing exactly what I wanted to do, and how I wanted to do it. So give it a try, and let me know what worked for you. Merry Beltane! Merry May!