Friday, January 11, 2019

A Look Ahead

Here we are in another new year. 

Whoopee
A new year means new beginnings, new ideas, new things to try.

So, I tried something new.

On January 1, I sat down with my preferred Tarot deck-the New Palladini-and grounded myself. I shuffled the deck, cut it, and laid out twelve cards, one for each month, in a clock pattern, with the card for January in the 1 o’clock position and continued all the way to December at 12 o’clock. I turned the deck over for the shadow card, the one underneath everything else. It would represent the overall theme for the year. I placed the deck in the center where the hands on an analog clock would be.

I did a quick overview to get a general feel for the spread and potential year ahead. I know that one card to represent 28-31 days is a lot to ask of a piece of paper, and other factors can still come up during the month, but as a general long term lesson for the month, I feel it's not too much. Or perhaps I can look at it as an area for me to work on. As a goal, not a prediction.

Many tarot readers and the public at large perceive certain cards as inherently positive or negative. And the imagery in a card can certainly lend to that perception; yet every card has both a light and shadow side, for one cannot exist without the other. In my quick overview, admittedly I was relieved to see only two cards that are generally perceived as negative or unfavorable; the Two and Eight of Swords which aren’t even that bad. And even one of those, the 8, was reversed, suggesting I look at its light side! So, my initial assessment was I was in for a potentially good year.

What also struck me as intriguing was that the cards seemed to come up in themes. The first half of the year appeared to be smooth sailing or learning with some challenges coming up in the second half. That doesn’t mean something won’t come up in the first half, but overall nothing terribly heavy. And I'm keeping in mind this is a map of my year, or suggested areas of growth, not a prediction.

Judgment, the 8 of Swords Reversed, and the Hanged Man together suggest that from January through March, I will be facing judgments either from others or, more likely from myself. With those Judgments in mind I should, or will be, freeing myself from those judgments or restraints of the 8 of Swords Reversed, and continue to let go of them, surrendering to the what is via the Hanged Man. With Judgment and the Hanged Man both being Major Arcana cards, that will be one heavy quarter. But, in a good way. Lots of continued personal growth. 

The next quarter looks the most interesting. Material, prosperity and emotion are the themes here. April and May have the 10 and King of Pentacles respectively, with June carrying the 9 of Cups. Some readers see the 10 of Pentacles as a happiness card as it typically depicts a family, often multiple generations. In this deck, it shows a couple staring off into the distance at a castle. The King of Pentacles represents a faithful provider, possible abundance, and is generous with what he’s accumulated. The 9 of Cups suggests satisfaction, gratitude and wishes coming true. So, lots of happiness, abundance, prosperity and satisfaction. Sounds good. Bring it!

Summer is where we get the first signs of uh-oh. The 7 of Rods in July suggests challenges, standing my ground. I may have to get defensive over some decisions I’ll be making. August brings the Knight of Cups Reversed followed by the 2 of Swords in September. Some emotional confusion, or withdrawal, maybe due to something I’m not seeing or possibly resisting. 

The last quarter was the most challenging for me to interpret as all three cards came up reversed, which isn’t always a bad thing. 

October has the 4 of Pentacles Reversed which could suggest a loosening of control over material goods or money. Will I continue purging things I no longer need or begin overspending? Or following the emotional issues in August/September, will I become overprotective? The 9 of Rods Reversed in November might suggest I could be wondering about how much more I can go on. Do I have the stamina? While the Hermit Reversed in December could suggest less introspection, less time on my own and getting more “out there” or further introspection, possible isolation. Yet, for some reason that doesn’t resonate. Maybe by December I will have faced all my judgments and put everything to rest. After all, if this shows what could happen as a possible outcome, I still have free will to make my own choices or changes. 

The theme, or shadow, card was the Page of Rods. In general, the pages can represent learning opportunities, and this page suggests being more creative, passionate, taking action. So, this will be a year of creativity, following my passions and taking more action. 

I’m still getting used to using different spreads and seeing how accurate people tell me my readings for them are. 

So, it will be interesting to see how well this plays out.

Stay tuned. 


Tuesday, January 8, 2019

A Cheerful Giver

I spent most of my teen years in fundamental Baptist churches. I even tried to remain religious through my turbulent coming out years. That didn’t go well. Not the coming out, though that had its moments; but, the remaining religious part. I eventually became more spiritual which is quite different. 

I remember many of the principles from my religious indoctrination, one of them being “God loves a cheerful giver” which was often said as the offering plates were being passed around. I doubt that was any coincidence, maybe to encourage the indoctrinated to give more, or at least to feel more cheerful about what we were able to give. 

I have since come to believe more in a Universal energy than some deity sitting somewhere wanting to be worshipped. I’ve also come to believe our energies create our reality, or perhaps our perception of it. I think of it as a mindset. Walt Disney once said, “if you can dream it, you can do it.” And Henry Ford also said, “if you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.”

Karma even gets into it here with the “what goes around, comes around threefold” ideology; treat people with kindness and the universe will respond in kind and vice versa times three. The trouble with this karma thing is that karma works on its own timetable. 

I feel we could extend this mindset idea to other matters as well. 

For example, in dating situations, if we believe all men or women are dishonest, we will attract men or women who are dishonest. In our material world, if we maintain a poverty mindset, we will remain in poverty. 

I do feel badly for those who are in need and try to help when I can. And when I do help, I try to do it cheerfully, not out of  guilt, exasperation or a feeling of “If I give you a dollar, will you shut up and go away?”

Nor do I help with the idea of expecting a karmic benefit, meaning that for every dollar I cheerfully offer someone I don’t expect three in return. Karma doesn’t work like that. I believe karma looks at your intention. If you do something positive with the intention of being rewarded for it, karma says no because it's not coming from the heart. Expectations are planned disappointments, even karmic ones. Yes, even karma loves a cheerful giver. 

Speaking of cheerful givers, I had an odd experience the other day right before Christmas.

I went shopping and as I was entering the store, a woman exited. “I don’t have any money for groceries,” she said, “Could you please help?”

I quickly gave her the once over; her hair was pulled back into a bun, she had on some makeup, her clothes were neat and clean, though why all that registered with me, I don't know. I then caught myself remembering I don’t need to know why she was in this predicament. Maybe she still had a job and a roof over her head, but just needed money for food for the holidays due to reasons unknown to me. I caught myself for being a bit judgmental and reached for my wallet. I pulled out a dollar, handed it to her and prepared to go on my way. Yet there was something in her energy that still left me uneasy.

“Could you make it a twenty?” She asked. 

My immediate thought was “WTF?”, snapped “No!” and considered taking my dollar back due to an apparent lack of gratitude, but didn’t. So much for being a cheerful giver. 

On one hand she had some nerve to ask for more, on the other hand she had the right to ask. Yet, not once did she mention children to add credence or guilt to her plight. 

I continued with my shopping, exited the store, whereupon she asked me once again for money. 

“I already gave you some” I answered curtly, still irritated about the ‘make it a twenty’ issue and that she apparently forgot that I had just given her money a few moments before.

“Oh, thank you.”

As I walk this path, I try to react without judgment, but I am human as well. I find myself reviewing, rehashing and rethinking overthinking things.

Actually, I need to learn not to react which is very hard. 

Therapists say the major part of our stress and anxiety lies in how we react to or perceive events.

Which makes it all the more important not to react.

Somehow.




Monday, December 31, 2018

Resolutions and Reflections

As I sit here in the early morning hours of December 31, at 4:30 a.m. to be exact, wondering why, once again, I cannot sleep as I've been awake since 2:30ish, I find myself looking back on this year.

And in contemplation of the next one.

Which brings up the traditional idea of New Year's Resolutions.

Surprise! I don't make any.

I stopped making them when I realized I never kept them. Not keeping them eroded my self-esteem, because I berated myself for failing. So, one year I resolved never to make any again. Does that mean I don't seek to improve myself in the coming year? No. I will make an effort to continue to improve myself, to walk down a healthier path, be it better eating, better attempts at exercise, etc. All I attempt to do is to be better. Which I think is easier than resolving to eliminate a bad habit.

2018 was the first full calendar year since my retirement. It's been interesting. I wanted to read more, I didn't. I wanted to write more, I sort of did. I wanted to exercise more, I didn't. I wanted to decompress from thirty-four-and-a-half years of teaching, I think I'm there. And maybe that was what I needed 2018 to be.

But, now it might be time to find a direction, something to do, to occupy my time, as well as my mind, as well as add to my wallet.

I am also reflecting back on 2018 as it has been an interesting year, both personally and politically. I'm not here to discuss the latter only the former.

This was the year I contemplated a roommate and had one actually which turned into a disaster. But, that was more based on the individual than the situation. No, not all roommates would be that difficult. But, I learned how challenging it would be to live with someone after eight years alone.

This was the year I began purging my house of anything I no longer needed, used or had seen within a year. So, I'm learning to downsize. 

This was the year I discovered the Tarot. I've discovered my readings are somewhat accurate which has been something new to wrap my head around. I'm trying not to be overly-analytical and wonder why they are so accurate, but simply accepting that they are. Letting go of this analytical stuff is hard for an Aquarian with a heavy dose of Libra in his astrological chart. Both signs are a bit guilty of overthinking and having the double dose is like being stuck in a mental maze with only a narrow escape route. So, I am learning I can stop overthinking.

This was the year I opened up to my intuition. Where this path will take me, who knows? I'll just be open to what it may bring. What else can I do? Maybe the cards will say. So, I am learning to trust myself.


This was the year I found more of my spiritual tribe. I've found people who understand where I am coming from and can sympathize, or even empathize, with me. These are people who encourage me along this path as they are walking some part of it, too. So, I am learning to socialize.

This was the year I reconnected with someone who has and will continue to play an important part in my life, but to what end, I can only speculate. I will confess, I've looked into the cards regarding this relationship, and they indicate it's promising, but that time will be a factor. Meaning, this will need some time to fully bloom due to where both of us are coming from. So, I am learning to trust someone else and open my heart, bit by bit.

As I look into the beginnings of 2019, which numerologically, is a Universal Year of 3. (To find the Universal Year, we add the digits to one single digit; 2+0+1+9=12, 1+2=3.) Three is the number of the trinity, of creation and therefore creativity. With creativity comes communication, as artists use their creativity to communicate their truths. This is a year for all of us to communicate our truth, once we find it.

As I look into a new year where I resolve to not make resolutions, I recall this t-shirt I bought a while ago. I think this sums up what I want to practice in 2019 and beyond:


Oh, yes, and I want to read more, write more and photograph more. 

Sunday, December 9, 2018

The Five of Wands

I find myself living the 5 of Wands at the moment. While I am still living the Chariot moment I’ve described before, and I’m rebuilding from the crashing Tower moments, I am now embroiled in a 5 of Wands dilemma.

As we look at the card we see five young men all swinging large wooden staffs or clubs. This seems to be an unstructured battle, no direction from any leader. This has become a free-for-all. Five men all wildly swinging these large wands hitting each other. It’s no wonder this card has come to suggest chaos, confusion, struggle and/or conflict particularly over a course of action, as the suit of Wands represents our passions in life, our courses of action, our joie-de-vivre. 

I’ve recently had some homeowner issues. I found a trail of water coming from my water heater. So, after a quick but subdued panic, I searched for plumbers on Yelp, and requested a quote. Within 10 minutes I had a response to my request but the plumber would not quote me anything over the phone, or internet, until he could come out to see what he was getting into. I thought this was a wise move for both of us. Why would he want to lock himself into a project that might cost him more than he initially quoted based on a photo and therefore lose money, or have to readjust his quote, and charge me more than what we agreed on and possibly lose a repeat customer? Undoubtedly, I will have other plumbing needs in the future.

Due to how long the water heater had been leaking, it had evidently weakened the platform the water heater was on, and seeped into the wall of my house so that simply replacing the water heater would be problematic due to the weakened platform and would prevent me from addressing the possible mold issue in the wall surrounding the heater. To make this long story short, I am now the proud owner of a tankless water heating system.

Now, I just need to find some money to pay it off.

Here’s where the 5 of Wands comes in.

I retired earlier than I could have. Had I waited another four years, I’d be in a much better and more stable financial position, but I might be in a less stable emotional state of being. Hmmm, money or sanity? For me, the choice was easy. And I always was open to the idea of having to supplement my pension. But that was then, this is now.

I’ve been retired now just over a year and a half. I’ve taken some time to decompress and get used to the idea of being retired. But now, I need to augment my pension. But, I am an introvert and somewhat empathic and therefore I avoid crowds. I’ve also learned to treasure my independence and solitude. Oh, and my freedom to come and go as I wish. Or to stay home. Or to read. Or to write. Or to play games on my iPad all day. Or to sleep. I think you get the picture. And yes, I do need to get out to learn to manage my empathic introversion. Or is it introverted empathicness? Whatever…

Yes, I could use some extra cash. I could play the lottery. In fact, I do. But, nothing much has come from it. Last week, I won $10.00. Whoopee.

How do I maintain my sense of independence and freedom while working?

I think you see the 5 of Wands in my life now; the conflict and confusion over my situation. What do I do? What action do I take?

Do I search for a job where I don’t deal with many people? Is there such a job? Do I trust that I will be provided for and what does that mean exactly? Does that mean I will find the right job? Or other source of income? Or some giant cosmic ATM? Okay, that last one was a stretch.

I need to invoke the Hanged Man here. He is about surrendering and letting go. 

But, what do I let go? I just don’t want to end up being a martyr for my own cause.

Maybe I should let all of it go, and let it be.

And let the Star guide me...
My Favorite version of the Star
From the Aquarian Tarot, by David Palladini

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Lessons from a Tree

The Lake at Franklin Canyon Park
I went for a walk the other day, as I try to get some exercise, vitamin D and to connect with nature as frequently as I can. I also try a walking meditation as I go along my way. Try being the operative word as those pesky thoughts and what-ifs do try and grab my attention. I acknowledge them, tell them to stfu and sit themselves back down. It doesn’t always work but at least I try.

This particular morning I decided to go to my favorite spot, Franklin Canyon Park. I knew the traffic would be less as it was Thanksgiving Day. 

Arriving at the park, I decided to remain on the paved roads as it had recently rained (finally!) and I wanted to avoid slipping in mud because I was hiking alone and should I fall and get hurt, I’d have no one to help me. After a while, I noticed the ground didn’t seem too muddy so I decided to just meander through the park while keeping my mind focused on what I was seeing and where I was going. I ended up taking a trail I had never explored before. 

The Unexplored Path
As I rounded a bend in the trail, I noticed a unique tree. A California live oak, I believe. California live oaks are quite common in the area, but what made this one unique was its development. As I passed it, I felt the urge to sit with the tree. Actually, I will admit I felt the tree reach out, “Come sit with me.” I made a promise, “I will be back” and continued exploring the path to its end.

I returned to the tree and took a few breaths to ground and center myself before climbing up on the trunk. Closing my eyes, I felt the energy of the tree and the sounds of the park surround me. And yet, I could feel the tree teaching me something. When I opened my eyes a few moments later, I understood what the tree wanted me to know.

When that little acorn fell from its parent tree, it landed just where it did. It took root and began to sprout; it found the nutrients it needed and grew into a sapling. Along the way, that little sapling faced many challenges, yet did what it needed to meet them without giving up its essence. In order to reach the light it so desperately needed, it had to grow parallel to the ground in places. Then it twisted itself around to grow some more when its neighbors began blocking out its light doing exactly what it needed to in order to continue its growth.

And the tree just did it. Without fear, without thinking of any repercussions, consequences or other potential outcomes. It needed to survive.

We can be like this tree. We will encounter many challenges along our journey and we can overcome them. We can bend ourselves, metaphorically, to circumvent some challenges. We can change direction, if need be.

Yet we are different from the tree.

We do what the tree doesn’t.

We think. 

I don’t mean to denigrate thinking. It benefits us while at the same time can be a source of discomfort. We can think to solve problems like what route is best, or which camera better suits my needs? Maybe those are simple choices with pros and cons to weigh but still some thinking is involved in reaching an outcome. But, thinking also gets us into trouble when we think of the what-ifs as we contemplate life's little conundrums. We anticipate negative outcomes which may or may not happen. (Hint, they usually don’t.)
  • What if they don’t like me? (What if they do?)
  • What if I fail? (What if you succeed?)
  • What if it doesn't work out? (What if it does?)
Okay, so in reality we overthink.

When we meet a challenge, I feel we should stop, look at it, decide on a course of action, attempt it and then evaluate the result. Did it work? It did? Great. Move on.

It didn’t? What different approach can I try? Because if I try the same thing again, I can’t expect some magically different outcome. And isn't that the definition of insanity: trying the exact same approach over and over, yet expecting the results to somehow turn out differently on their own? 

Or should I try something else and change something within  me that concerns the situation while remaining true to myself? Perhaps a simple attitude adjustment?

Or is the whole thing even worth my energy?

Depending on how major of a situation it is, I prefer the last one. If the situation isn’t worth my energy, I say fuck it and move on.

So, where the tree simply adapts itself to the challenge, we actually have the ability to remove the challenge from our path.

But, the biggest lesson I learned came from a part of the tree we don’t see; the roots. The roots keep the tree grounded, safe and secure. While the trunk twists, turns and does what it needs to, the tree itself remains grounded and secure in its tree-ness.

Whatever life throws at us we are capable of meeting it as long as we remain grounded which, admittedly, is not easy.

And if we can do that we can reach our canopy out into the universe to its fullest extent.

Just like the tree.


All photos courtesy of Jeffrey Ballam

Friday, November 23, 2018

Happiness


A friend recently asked me a very deep, personal question. But, before I could answer, my mind took me on a quick trip back to my younger years.

I viewed this surprise trip down memory lane as inspiration for this post. Or as a sign I needed to write it. 

He asked me, “Are you happy?”

The moment he asked me this, a book that belonged to my grandfather flashed before my mind’s eye. As a child, I loved this book both in its simplicity of text and artwork. As an adult, I now see that its simplicity is also its depth. The book was “Happiness is a Warm Puppy” by Charles Schulz,1962. 

Yes, that Charles Schulz of Peanuts fame. As I recall, the book consisted of one line for each character or pair of characters describing what happiness meant to them: 
  • One page shows Lucy hugging a confused Snoopy expressing “Happiness is a warm puppy.”
  • Another page shows Linus all snuggled in bed, “Happiness is sleeping in your own bed.”
  • And yet one more illustration shows Lucy with a pair of tweezers and Linus examining his finger with the phrase “Happiness is finally getting the sliver out.”
(Disclaimer: I do not have the book and these are pages I was able to see on various listings on the internet.)

The other memory that sprang to mind when my friend asked me that question was a song my family enjoyed whenever it came up on the 8-track. (Yes, I’m that old!)  “Happiness is...” by Ray Conniff sums up this post in its core lyric: “Happiness is different things to different people.” It goes on to list various people and what makes them happy:
  • To a preacher, it’s a prayer
  • To a golfer, it's a hole in one 
  • To a father, it's a brand new son
You get the picture, we all have our own definition of what happiness is, from a warm puppy to a brand new son. Granted these are external moments of happiness. All of which can be lost in a moment.

Which leads me to my point, true happiness is an inside job. We choose what makes us happy. We choose to be happy where we are in that moment.

Now, I’m not suggesting that we should try to make ourselves happy while in a relationship that may be toxic or no longer working. Nor should we settle for or stay in a relationship or job if we are truly miserable and no longer consider ourselves to be happy. Nor should we accept something that we truly can’t live with while in a relationship or job that is doing well. Obviously some compromises can be worked out. 

For a number of years, I was in a relationship and believed I was happy. But, I was only happy because I was in a relationship again right after my first parter had passed. I was no longer alone. The relationship began to change after a few years but I was still with someone who loved me so I felt happy, after all relationships are forever, aren't they? And, I didn't want to be alone again. Naturally.

Quite a conundrum.

I have come to believe we must first be happy with ourselves. The moment we decide to place our happiness in someone else’s hands, they will drop it every single time. Every. Single. Time.

Nothing is perfect. No relationship, no job, nothing.

So, if nothing is perfect that begs the question, can we define what happiness is within the context of a relationship? Or any situation, for that matter. I feel that as long as we can be happy with ourselves in an imperfect situation, we can accept the challenges and imperfections as long as we are not settling for something less than we deserve.


Many of us believe happiness is a destination. If only I had..., if only I were..., if only I worked..., if only my partner...

And yet, when we get those dream items often we aren’t any happier. In my opinion, chasing happiness like this is similar to dangling the carrot in front of the donkey to get it to move forward. Sometimes we end up focusing so much on leading the donkey, we take our eyes off our path and end up who-knows-where.

So, this brings me back to my original point, we need to be happy with ourselves before we can be happy externally.

With a potential relationship on the horizon, I am focusing on my happiness first. I am not depending on anyone else to make me happy. 

No one can. 

It’s my job, my responsibility and no one else’s.

So, to answer my friend, “Yes, I am happy."


Sunday, November 11, 2018

Swords, Cups and Queens

Sometimes we are but a simple messenger delivering a message we don’t understand.

And we pray the message is good so we don’t get metaphorically shot.

Hopefully we will find out the verdict if we just wait.

And trust.

And continue to trust.

And then trust some more.

And then, voilà, all will be revealed in its own divine time over which we have no fucking control.

I had such a lesson quite recently. Fortunately, it all happened within the same hour period, so this was a very short era of divine time.

It happened in my Tarot group.

After our typical lesson and discussion period, we have a Readers’ Exchange, where, if someone has a question, the other readers who choose, offer to read for the questioner.

Now, I am one of the newest members in the group, both in learning and attending regularly. Some of the others have been reading for at least a year or two more than I have and some up to nearly twenty years.

It took me a few months to gain the courage to begin reading for all these veterans.

And, I took that step about a month ago.

This lesson I learned was just a week ago. Two of the more experienced members had a question for the Readers’ Exchange and I chose to read for them. Now, when I do a reading at home for a friend, or myself, I usually do a full Celtic Cross which involves ten cards across a table. That’s a little difficult to pull off in a restaurant where there are dishes, ketchup bottles, water glasses, etc on the table. Plus, we usually run upwards of ten people total so table space is at a premium. I’ve tried experimenting with three-card spreads, as in a past/present/possible future situation, or a where-are-you-now/what’s-blocking-you/a-possible-outcome spread.

In both cases, I drew three cards assigning a meaning to each position in the spread. The first question had to do with the possible outcome of insurance companies handling a claim of a recent automobile accident. In this case, I assigned speed-of-resolution to the first space, challenges-or-blockages to the second space and left the third space as a possible wild card, meaning a card for advice, clarification, etc. The first two cards made perfect sense to me for the positions they were in. The third had me stumped; the Queen of Cups. 

Now I could have thrown the cards back in the deck and redrawn, but would that improve my ability? And shouldn’t I learn to work with the cards and the questioner together? I mean, if this is what came up, it came up for a reason. And mine is not to wonder why.

As Cups is the suit of the heart, the Queen is the most nurturing and loving of the four queens in the deck and she can also signify a romantic connection. She is also the most maternal of the queens and very caring. I was having great difficulty connecting her to the situation, the car accident.

When a Queen, or any court card, shows up in a reading, it can refer to;
  1. A real person,
  2. An aspect of the questioner’s personality as it relates to the attributes of the card, or in some instances,
  3. The energy of the card somehow in the overall situation. 
I ruled out the last one as I couldn’t see a car accident being somewhat nurturing.

Another reader was asking some clarifying questions based on the cards she had pulled, and our questioner began telling her story. I listened raptly for any mention of someone who might fit the Queen of Cups. As my friend recounted the story she began with how it happened and the immediate aftermath. She recalled sitting on a curb when a woman came up to her, said she was a nurse and made sure my friend was okay. The nurse stayed with her all day making sure my friend had something to eat, and made sure she got home safely. 

Then it hit me, the nurse was the Queen of Cups! I couldn’t see her in the spread even if she did come up. However, she was there in the story. 

The second reading was a general reading for a woman who was celebrating a birthday and wanted to know what the upcoming year might bring. I’d never done a birthday reading before, especially with three cards, so I improvised. I couldn’t very well do a past/present/future here. So, I thought mind/heart/body? Hmm, why not? And a fourth card to represent a theme for the year.

So, I drew the first card for the mind position, and it was appropriate. Cool. The second card, for the heart, was a bit concerning, but nothing tragic. The third card for the body was troublesome. The questioner had been having health issues, recently had surgery to remedy them and here I draw the Nine of Swords. A card of grief, despair, worry, anxiety, the list goes on. It’s not a good card to see come up. 

Soon, it came to be my turn to share. So, I shared the first two cards, and my friend understood them. Then it came time for the Nine of Swords and her health. As I held up the card, the energy I was feeling didn’t seem very heavy. I wasn’t filled with the sense of grief or worry normally carried by that card. I couldn’t place what exactly was happening but it didn’t feel as troublesome as when I first saw the card. Before I could go on further, my friend said, with a big smile on her face that she knew exactly what the card was referring to. And was quite content.

Whew!

As I am learning to trust in my readings, my broader lesson here is to also trust in myself.

The hardest lesson of all.

But, I’m getting there.