In the beginning.

Growing up, I used to love writing. At some point in my youth, I recall thinking that it would be a great time to start writing out my life story, and thanks to Doogie Howser, M.D.; I knew that a digital diary was the only way to complete the task. I recall sitting in front of the computer, waiting for what seemed to be an eternity as the dial-up connection screeched its way into notifying me that my connection was successful, only for me to be told that I needed to log off because someone was either expecting a phone call or needed to use the phone. 

Fast forward to 2020, during the pandemic, I started journaling again. At the time, there seemed to be this palpable charge in the air that nudged me into journaling, like a feeling that said that I need to put pen to paper regarding my thoughts and emotions, that I couldn’t keep them restrained inside of me, and furthermore, asked me why was I even trying to keep them controlled.  

It was an odd time for me, likewise for the rest of the world, I’m sure. I, like many others, found myself reflecting back on my life and contemplating my future, asking myself about what I truly wanted for myself. I struggled to get clear with my vision and set my intentions. I wanted help trying to sort thru and understand what I was feeling. Still, I didn’t feel like I had anyone in my life that I could go to with these thoughts and feelings, so I did what any rational-minded person does when they don’t have the answer to such an existential question; I Googled it! I don’t recall the exact words I typed into the search engine; still, the results all referenced divination as a helpful tool of forecasting and self-actualization. Not knowing anything about divination, I searched for examples of this, and upon seeing the results load, Tarot and Astrology caught my attention. 

I was excited. It felt as if I had stumbled upon the answer, so I proceeded to order what I thought were tarot cards but, in reality, were beautifully illustrated oracle cards, the Threads of Fate Lumen Edition Oracle Cards, to be exact. When the oracle cards arrived, I had no idea how to use them. I felt like the frustration I was experiencing in trying to understand how to use them only highlighted the frustration that I felt internally; I was disconnected from the knowledge and magic of the cards, just like I was disconnected from the knowledge and magic of myself. It was then that I decided to improvise and do what felt right for me. I had read somewhere that the cards in tarot are representative of a journey, where you start off as The Fool and end with The World. So I thought, surely, oracle cards must also speak of a journey; if they didn’t before, they were going to that day! I got to work visually analyzing and organizing the 55 cards in an order that made sense to me, and when I ran across a card that I couldn’t immediately find a place for, I put it off to the side for further contemplation. 

I was excited as I organized. I felt like I was in this calm but energetic flow state, completely and contently engaged in my task. I realized that I hadn’t felt that happily focused in quite a while. As I sat on the floor of my home office, proudly staring at my masterfully organized deck of oracle cards, it dawned on me that I needed to preserve the deck in the order that they were currently in because the contents could speak to my psychological state at the time and/or be indicative of some profound message that I was to receive. Eyeing the beauty of the Destruction card sitting on top of all the other cards cemented the notion for me. I began carefully placing the deck back into its box as I thought of how interesting it will be to revisit the deck six months or even a year from now. What information will I learn about myself? Will I still see the story the same as I organized it? A total sense of accomplishment along with all of these prophetic questions and realizations were coursing thru my mind as I blindly reached behind me for the top to the box, and that’s when I felt them…..the OTHER oracle cards, the FORGOTTEN ones, the ones that I could not envision in the story that I orchestrated. I was immediately hit with a mental montage of every piece of Ikea furniture I’ve ever unsuccessfully attempted to assemble; every time in assembly, a required part unexpectedly became an extra part because I had progressed too far into the assembly to turn back and correct my neglectful error(s). I felt the familiar sense of frustration bubbling in me as hot tears began to form in my eyes. Mere seconds earlier, I was on top of the world with feelings of pride in accomplishing the goal that I spontaneously set out to complete, and now, I was dealing with these LEFTOVER cards. It was then that I decided that those remaining cards would be a problem for another day. I secured the organized deck and stored it away in a box on the top shelf of my office closet, and as I grabbed a ziplock bag for the remaining cards, I decided that I would take one last look at them before stuffing them in the storage bag. Seven cards remained from the deck, the first being the Surrender card. My first thought about the card was that it made me think of money, USD currency. My second thought was: “Surrender?! Surrender for what, surrender to who?! Don’t these cards know that Goonies never say die???!” I’m not sure exactly when or why I started viewing myself as a Goonie, but at that moment, it felt right, so I was just going to truffle shuffle my way into alignment with it.

Fast forward to the present year, 2021 has felt like I’m comfortably stalled on the intersection of mourning the death of who I used to be, what I used to have, and celebrating who I am now, mixed with the excitement about who I’m evolving into. I feel like I’ve learned so much in such a short period. I feel more sure of myself. I also think that I have a completely different viewpoint than I previously held, which is why I thought it would be the perfect time to dust off those oracle cards and try to find a place for the seven stragglers in my organized deck. Once I set eyes on them, the realization of their importance took hold. I removed the seven from their ziplocked storage with a half-shocked, half assured confidence. It’s how I assume Eddie Morra from the movie Limitless felt when he got his first hit of NZT. All of a sudden, things just fell into place and made sense. Previously, I was looking to the organized deck as what I felt would provide me a deeper look into myself when in reality, it was the seven. I couldn’t previously find a fit for the seven cards in my story because they were my seven blindspots…my seven shadows: Surrender, The Observer, The Revolutionary, The Weaver, The Creator, The Wildling, and Get Wild.  

Surrender, a word that I felt, went against everything I had been taught because I was taught that surrendering was to give up. A relinquishment of power. It wasn’t until recently that I realized that I was right and wrong in my assessment, much like my original views on the oracle deck and the seven outlier cards. I was right that the oracle cards would provide me some profound life-altering perspective into myself; I was wrong about how I would receive that profound life-altering perspective. It wasn’t thru the organized deck, although I’m sure that there is some information there that I can utilize. The life-altering perspective was thru the seven cards that I could not find a place for in my perfectly organized story. Thinking back on the Surrender card, I realize that it held the same message that I learned from my seven cards; to reevaluate the situation from a different, more objective, higher perspective. The Surrender card asked me to give up, but it wasn’t my power that it asked me to give up. It asked me to give up this concept of defining and controlling how I received what I asked for. It was trying to teach me to be open and receptive to all possibilities. That was the lesson for me: surrendering my ideals of how things should be. It’s not easy rewiring the way that you think. As a matter of fact, it’s damn hard. When I’m feeling challenged in thought and/or situation, one of the practices that work for me is to pause and internally ask myself, ” I wonder if I’m observing this from the perspective that it’s being presented, or am I Salt-Bae-ing it; meaning, am I putting a little extra emotional seasoning on it? Am I viewing it from the tinted lens of a similar past experience? The Surrender card has been surprisingly very impactful to my evolution. The other 6 cards have provided me with subtle peeks into their meanings but haven’t yet hit me over the head in the way that the Surrender card did, and maybe they’re not intended to; IDK, I guess that’s a story for another day. Until next time.

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