I miss Star Foster. I know she's controversial and that a lot of people found her mean spirited, attention seeking, and so on—I still miss her over at patheos.
I used to follow patheos regularly—probably too often. I'd check in two three times a day. I'd look up old posts and new posts and compare. I'd look to see what was trending, and I'd poke my head into other faith areas. What as neat about that time in Patheos wasn't just Star Foster, there was Theo Bishop with his very calm even kilter quiet presence, then suddenly there was the Wild Hunt, my favorite everything, and then the Pagan Soccer Mom joined the blog roll and it was like all my favorite authors had got together in one big tea party session. The site could only have been improved of Carol Schulz had a regular column.
There are better deeper bloggers and plenty of people I prefer to read now. I don't lack for quality in depth pagan or polytheist reading. But something about the way Star would dive in with this passion and red aggressive energy always kept me coming back to read or respond to. She took everything so personally and almost all of the time it was never about her or her religion—a pro and con because it certainly created drama but I always saw it as symbolic of her passion and her creative spark. She could take things so far removed from her and make them personal and pertinent. She had a way of writing that even when I didn't care, she would have my full attention and thought for at least a few minutes. It's an intensity that in person I think would be too much but written, where I could control the time and amount it could be inspiring. I loved how passions would just take her and spread across blogs. I loved how much of others work she read, and wished I could find the time to read as regularly as she does/did.
I used to think there would be nothing worse than silence from her. I wanted to hear about her life, and know she was doing well. I'd gotten so invested in the Star Foster life and brand that when she left patheos it was a bit like losing a friend. Granted, she doesn't know me. We've never met or even written back and forth. I'm a lurker in real life and on the internet, I rarely ask questions or want to discuss so much as hope that people will bring the info to me in time or I'll work out the problem on my own in my head.
There is something worse than the silence though. Ms. Foster returned to the blog world a converted Christian. And I want to say first and foremost that I wish her well in her new religious journey. I totally understand religion isn't a neat tidy thing. She isn't the first to return or go to Christianity and she won't be the last. But for someone who fought so hard again Jesus and God, she wrote an article entitled I Reject Jesus Christ hard for me. I found her relationship to Christianity and Jesus cathartic for me at the time. Her writing and the writing she inspired about both paganism as a whole and individual blogger's and people's interaction and experience with Christianity, Christians, and Christ helped me work through a lot of lingering hurt I had from my own conversion and daily Jesus-y interactions. I know it's her path and her choice and I want to respect that. Still I look at her writing now and her writing then and I can't reconcile the two. Two years later, I still miss Star Foster as I knew her.
It's fall and the time for honoring the death and granting ourselves release. I hoped that my need for some of the combative fire, which is so double edged and perhaps Star's ultimate undoing slowly abates. I hope there is a time where I can look at In the Garden and just care about Star as a person and not read what she wrote there and compare it to writings in patheos and wonder what happened and how. Until then, I guess let me just say that I miss Star Foster but wish her well on her spiritual journey.