Friday, March 25, 2016

Foxy Queen

Queen of Pentacles - Tarot of the Magical Forest

When I draw the Queen of Pentacles for myself I always think of taking care of my family, but the queen from this deck really captures what I am feeling today when I look at her.  Doesn't she look a little tired, the way she is sort of hunched over her large coin?  The coin almost looks heavy, like she is struggling to hold onto it, or maybe I am projecting just a bit. Ha!

I looked through this journal at all of the other times the Queen of Pentacles has come up for me, and it is so interesting to look back at the patterns I create for myself.  I can also see growth in myself.  I accept myself more unconditionally now.  I notice when my self care is lacking more quickly, which is the message the Queen of Pentacles has for me today.

In the last few months I've worked hard to take care of myself by eating well, taking daily walks, working with my doctor and naturopath, addressing anemia and a hormonal imbalance with supplements and bio-identical progesterone.  I've been taking time for myself to read, listen to soul nourishing podcasts and journal.

That attention to my self care pulled me out of a major depressive episode, and I'm feeling so much better than I was three months ago, but in the last couple of weeks I've let my self care slide.  I've forgotten to take my vitamins more times than not, and it's been over a week since I took a walk.  I'm noticing less energy and it's affecting my ability to do the things around the house and for my family that I was getting done easily before.

So, thanks, you foxy but tired-looking queen, for reminding me that it's time to go back to doing what works.

“Love yourself first, and everything else falls in line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” – Lucille Ball 

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Friday, March 4, 2016

Enjoying the Fruits of My Labor

Nine of Coins - Joie De Vivre Tarot

What a perfect card to pull on my budgeting/bill-paying/menu-planning/grocery-shopping day!  And now I have a full fridge and can relax and enjoy (Ha!) until  next week.

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Thursday, March 3, 2016

Love, Love, Love

Yesterday's card, the Queen of Coins or Pentacles,...

Queen of Coins - Joie De Vivre Tarot
was an accurate reflection of my life right now.  The picture on this card of the multi-handed Queen holding onto her heart while comforting her companion speaks to me.

I'm trying to balance caring for my family, taking care of our home, feeding everyone good food, managing our finances, being a counselor to my husband and children with taking care of myself.  It's not an easy thing to do, but one thing I have been getting better at doing is being gentle with myself when all of that caring doesn't look the way I once thought it should.

The other day I told my husband that most days all I'm managing to accomplish is taking a walk, helping my youngest with her math, and making dinner.  He gave me a hug and said, "That's a lot!"  and it is a lot because the fact that I'm getting those things done means I have systems in place that I'm taking for granted.  I'm accomplishing things that I'm not giving myself credit for.  I couldn't make dinner if I didn't have ingredients in the house or if my kitchen were a mess or if I didn't have the energy to get it done, and that involves managing our money wisely, shopping for food, planning ahead, keeping up with dishes, getting enough sleep, yada, yada, yada, and so it goes with everything else I do for myself and others.   Yesterday's card was like a little nod, a pat on the back, acknowledgement that I'm doing okay.

Ace of Cups - Joie De Vivre Tarot

Today's card is reminding me to connect with my higher self. Another way I can take care of myself is to let myself receive divine love.  It's essential for me, really, and while I'm working so hard on keeping order, if I don't let myself be still, hear the wisdom I have inside, and feel the love there, any peace I achieve through order will be fleeting.

"The ego says, 'Once everything falls into place, I'll feel peace.' The spirit says, 'Find your peace, and then everything will fall into place.'" ~Marianne Williamson

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Friday, February 19, 2016

Heaven and Earth

As part of my reading about overcoming my fear of death I also inquired about life after death. First I asked if there was, indeed, life after death. I pulled The Four of Cups.

Four of Cups - Joie De Vivre Tarot
Interesting.  I could interpret this card as advising me that my focus on death and whether or not we go on afterwards is causing me to miss the life around me, and that is a valid point, but I didn't ask for advice with this card, I asked if there is life after death.  With that in mind, I might also see that there is a whole world outside of the little box where I currently reside.  Possibly there is a realm around us that we can't easily sense.  That is my hope.

Next I drew two cards asking for a description of heaven or whatever lies beyond this life:

The Tower, Ace of Coins - Joie De Vivre Tarot

Wow.  The Tower.  Of course.  Death qualifies as a tower event, no?  The thing with The Tower card is it indicates an occurrence that changes your life forever.  It means the end of something, but it's an end that needed to happen.  It makes way for something better, maybe the very best.

This Ace of Coins is such a beautiful description of Heaven too, and it is the same card (although from a different deck) that came up the last time I was inquiring about things divine.  I see abundance.  I see a tangible place where one creates something new.  I see gifts flowing freely from the Universe.

This is what I'm coming to believe about what we will be doing after life in our earthly bodies.  I think maybe we'll be co-creating a new life together, just as we are, albeit mostly unconsciously, co-creating this life.  Maybe we have many earthly lives before we're ready for that creation, or maybe we are, on one level, creating Heaven and this existence on earth simultaneously.

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Thursday, February 18, 2016


The Fool - Joie De Vivre Tarot
When I see the fool I tend to think, "Trust," and "Go for it," even when I don't know what it is.  I do have a sense that there is something coming my way or that I'm headed in a new direction, but I have no idea what or where.  Still, I'm immensely grateful for the new hope and inspiration after a period of depression. 

Seeing the fool today reminds me of a reading I did for myself in the midst of that anxious, depressed time.  It was such a special and encouraging reading, but I didn't write about it because I'm a bit embarrassed about my fear of death and how weak it makes me seem.  I'm going to write about it now because it has come to mind many times since.

I asked, "How can I stop being so afraid of death?" and I pulled two cards: The Fool and The Magician.

The Fool and The Magician - Joie De Vivre Tarot

The way you stop fearing death is you get on with living.  Start a new adventure! Create a new thing in your life.  Get on with the business of creating the life you want and you will be so busy you won't have much time for lamenting it's end. 

“One day we shall die. But all the other days we shall be alive.”
                                                          ~ Per Olov Enquist

When I was a little girl there was a period of time where I would lie awake every night gripped with the fear of my eventual demise.  My mom would sit by my bed trying to comfort me every night, and many nights I would climb into bed with her.  One night my dad said something that caused my death fear to go dormant for years. 

He said, "You haven't even begun living yet!" 

It was like a magic spell, and my fear of death didn't resurface until after I had kids.  I chased it away at that time with religion and antidepressants.  Now I find it coming back again as I creep closer to fifty years and every day, thanks to the internet, I hear about another person who has passed away.  The Fool and The Magician are essentially saying what my dad said to me.  Start living! 

And that is what I'm attempting to do.

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Friday, February 12, 2016

I'm Magical

The Magician - Joie De Vivre Tarot

Whenever this card comes up for me the thought that pops into my head is, "You make the magic happen, Baby!" This is a shift from The Hanged Man/Six of Swords/Four of Swords--wait and see, hang in there, you are in transition cards I've been getting until now, and I can definitely feel a shift in my energy as well.

I'm feeling like me again, and that all by itself seems like magic, but if I look back at all I've been doing to take care of myself, I can see that I made that magic happen.  

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Tuesday, February 9, 2016

In My Coccon

I'm still pulling a card each day, but I haven't posted because I keep pulling the same cards.  The six of swords, the four of swords, and the hanged man are the cards I have pulled two or three times each. 

That is telling me that I am in transition, but that transition requires less activity and striving and more rest, patience, and introspection.  So, my hibernation continues.

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Friday, February 5, 2016

Spiritual Support

I was up most of the night feeling anxious.  Again.  I've actually been depressed and anxious since the beginning of October.  There have been several major stresses in my life during these months, and that together with my seasonal affective disorder, together with my generalized anxiety disorder have had me in quite a state.  

I'm not ignoring it.  I've had a couple of appointments with my doctor.  My blood work showed that I'm anemic, but that is resolving with iron.  Otherwise, I'm healthy. Well, except for this anxiety and depression.  My doctor wants to prescribe an antidepressant.  I've been on them before, but I'm trying this time to see if I can get to the root cause instead of masking it with medication.  I may still opt for medication if I can't find better relief, but in the meantime I'm working with a naturopath who has tested my estrogen and progesterone levels along with a saliva test for adrenal function.  I have an appointment with him today to find out the results.

I'm also trying to make some lifestyle changes, so far with some minimal success, but success nonetheless.  I'm kind of hit or miss with walking or other exercise, but I know it would make a big difference.  I'm working on better sleep hygiene and eating healthy whole foods while taking a few supplements.

I've been reading lots of different works dealing with spirituality and positive thinking as well, trying very hard to challenge negative thoughts.  I acknowledge the thoughts, but then I try to determine whether they are actually true, and I notice how those thoughts make me feel.  It's all hard work, but it is helping.  I could probably use some guidance from a counselor, but I've been dragging my feet when it comes to actually finding one and making an appointment.

Whew.  That's the background.  I'm trying to get to my tarot reading today, and I will, but there is one more big piece to my anxiety puzzle.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Rest and Retreat

Four of Swords - Joie De Vivre Tarot
The beginning of this week was rough, lots of anxiety, for a variety of reasons, but I'm feeling calmer now; calm but exhausted. 

This card is perfect.  I had already started my day gently by spending forty minutes reading in bed before getting up.  It felt nice, and I was almost tempted to feel guilty about it.  Almost.  The Four of Swords is telling me that I'm on the right track by taking time to rest, not just my body, but my mind which has been in overdrive trying to figure out solutions for problems that haven't even occurred yet.

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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Hang In There, Baby.

The Hanged Man - Joie De Vivre Tarot

This has been a rough week for me.  I breathed a sigh of relief when I drew this card.  It seemed to say, "Hang in there baby!  You don't have to make any big moves right now, just rest in yourself for a while." 

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Monday, February 1, 2016


Four of Cups - Joie De Vivre Tarot
These feelings of anxiety are real, and yet, I know I am creating them with my thoughts.  The feelings of isolation and, at times, hopelessness are also all too real, but that is because I'm living in my head, depending too much on my thoughts.  Outside of this box are family and friends reaching out, close enough for me to touch, if only I would.

Look into the water on this card and see love reflected there.  When anxious thoughts take over I need to remember who I am underneath the ego, the thoughts, the fears.  I am love.  The reflection in the water reminds me of The Work of Byron Katie.  One of the questions she asks over and over is, "Who would you be without that thought?"  In this card, I need to see who I really am reflected in the water that is calm and free of those thoughts I'm experiencing inside the box.

Getting out of the box is hard,...or maybe that's another thought that really isn't true.

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Sunday, January 31, 2016

Find the Light

Five of Coins - Joie De Vivre Tarot
The Five of Pentacles is one of my least favorite cards to see in a reading, but this version of it offers hope that I don't see as readily in other versions.  That's why the Joie De Vivre Tarot is one of my favorite decks.  I always choose it when I need a loving, gentle voice.

The thing that stands out for me in this card is the light being offered by the candles.  My message for today is when you're in a dark place, look for the light, and there is always light.

"Never fear shadows. They simply mean there's a light shining somewhere nearby."
~Ruth E. Renkel

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Saturday, January 30, 2016

Cool Calm Waters

Six of Swords - Joie De Vivre Tarot
I drew the Six of Swords two days in a row.  It's a comforting card to me because I've always seen the swords on the shore as troubling thoughts, and the swan is carrying her, me, through calm waters to a brighter shore, leaving those thoughts behind.  I like this version of the six of swords as opposed to the others where the woman travels in a boat with the swords.

Yesterday was a difficult day.  I woke at 4:00 in the morning with worries looming large.  Those worries stayed with me throughout the day, but I had a nice long sleep and I'm feeling better today.  Seeing this card again makes me smile because it's telling me to leave those swords where they are, dip my feet into the cool calm water, and let myself be carried into brighter days. 

The card also tells me there are still some things that I may need to let go of.  There are still some things that are not serving me well, and it's time to move on, and, as difficult as it may seem, it's for the best.

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Thursday, January 28, 2016


Eight of Coins - Joie De Vivre Tarot
I woke up extra tired today, and I was feeling no part of my new morning routine. I'm still playing with it; trying to figure out what works and what doesn't. I decided to skip the yoga, even though it's just a quick stretch. I was just too tired.

I sat down and pulled the Eight of Coins and the phrase that came to mind was, "Hard work yields results," blah blah blah.

After a little pout, I got up and did my yoga.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Greatest Love of All

The Lovers - The Joie De Vivre Tarot

I've decided to draw a card a day again.  It's been a while since I had a daily tarot practice, but I'm changing up my morning routine and testing different things to develop one that works for me.

Today I drew The Lovers and it's interesting to me that the entry for today in Mark Nepo's The Book of Awakening is about loving ourselves first; compassion for ourselves is a spring from which love and compassion for others flows.

Reading from this book or other inspirational material is another element of the morning routine I've decided to try for the first time today.  I've been going back and forth on this morning routine thing, wondering if I should make it all about me and taking care of myself or if I should use it to get some things, like housework, done .  When I focus only on loving self-care I start to feel a little guilty.  Am I being a bit self-centered?  Shouldn't I focus on being a responsible adult and getting necessary work done first?  Work first, play later?

The messages I'm getting this morning tell me that I must care for myself first.  It's not selfish, it's crucial.  It's a morning routine, not my entire focus for the day, and in starting with nourishing my own mind, body, and spirit I'll be better equipped to take on all those other responsibilities.

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