Saturday, 9 April 2016

Why I put the cards down...and why I'm picking them back up again

After years of daily blogging, in December 2015, I put the cards down, stopped doing email readings, and stopped blogging. I sold several decks and just stopped thinking about tarot and Lenormand. You don't have to have a traumatic reason for setting the cards aside, but sometimes you do.

My tarot reading service has always been small scale, and that is by choice. I have a full time job and prefer doing readings as and when. If people find their way to this blog and order a tarot reading, I consider that meant to have happened. And this blog was never really a marketing tool so much as a place to write my thoughts about a topic that fascinated (and sometimes obsessed) me. That anyone wanted to read it or to have me read the cards for them was a pleasant surprise. In essence, tarot was a hobby and a pleasure. (It was also the keystone of my spiritual path, an aspect that did not feel appropriate for exploration on this blog, so I seldom wrote about that aspect. I can tell you now that my interest in tarot originated as a spiritual practice, my research into the cards led me down a completely new spiritual path, and out of that came my desire to write about the cards and read them for others.)

But then something happened in my life in 2014 that took the pleasure out of everything. It made me question everything in my life. It made the meaning and the foundation fall out from under me. It made the things I loved seem pointless and stupid. These things I had put so much value in had not helped prevent this from happening to me, so what good were they?  What good was anything? What was the point of anything? I know that when you lose interest in the things you love most, that is a major signifier of deep depression. But when it happens to you, you can't do anything about it. You just really don't care anymore.

My spiritual practice suddenly seemed to me frivolous and meaningless. I looked at my things and I detested them. I loaded up several boxes of paraphernalia and gave it in to charity shops. (Probably making some local fledgling witches very happy!) I sold loads on ebay. I only kept a few key items. I took a car full of books to the local second hand book shop and sold them for a fraction of their value, only keeping a few titles that I knew I could not bear to part with.  I gave the more valuable books away to friends. I deleted a witchcraft blog I had been keeping.  I was paring things down with a view to leaving this path altogether.

I don't know what I thought any of this would solve, but I guess it made me feel better because it gave me control over something in my life, at a time when so much was out of my control. Maybe not unlike anorexics decide to stop nourishing their bodies in an effort to control something, I decided to stop nourishing my spirit. Spiritual anorexia. Now that I think about it, that seems an apt assessment.

I kept blogging through most of this, funnily enough. It was a habit, and in some ways, it was a mask.

Several months later, hoping to spark some sort of refreshed interest, I started the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids course. But then, I found trying to read and absorb the materials made me feel drained and, dare I say it, bored. I decided that I couldn't cope with any of it, so I stopped blogging and stopped reading the course materials. I keep getting packets from OBOD which I file away in a folder. I will return to it at some point.

I just feel like looking at the cards again. I find myself looking at blue in the sky. The other day, I noticed the buds on the rowan trees.  I tried to reject the cards. I blamed them for not telling me this thing was going to happen. I blamed my spiritual practice for not keeping me safe. When I was betrayed in life, I turned my back on these friends. I needed to do that for a while. It's hard to cope with the places cards can take you, when you're so wounded. It's hard to reconcile that so much was hidden that they never revealed. It's hard to find the energy to string words together, when there seems no point to anything any more.

Healing takes a lot longer than you think. I remember reading that when you've had a trauma, it can take up to two years to even start to feel normal again. For me it's been 18 months. So maybe writing on this blog today is a sign I'm starting to turn that corner.

21 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing that Carla. Your blog and your insights have been missed and it is great to know how much better you're feeling. I know that for me, approx 18 months to 2 years was about what it took to move on from a whopper of a trauma, and my spiritual practices ceased for the most part. I simply had nothing to give. It's good to see you :-)

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    1. Thanks, Margo. I'm glad to hear you're feeling better, too. :)

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  2. It took me almost five years to get over a two year betrayal! I can certainly relate. We are survivors. It's always a treat to read your blog, and it has been heartwarming to call you my friend. Just keep moving forward, and I will follow. :D

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  3. I can relate all too well. Thank you so much for sharing... because I'm going to share this. Hoping your heart, mind and soul heal to stronger. That's a thing, right? But really, blessed be. and all that.

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  4. Hugs...
    Spiritual anorexia seems like a very apt word. Many people go through the same thing - often we turn away from the things that are just what we need to get through something. Because it can challenge, it can rock the boat, or like you say, help create some form of control, we can push the very healing heal things we need away.

    Purify the right things, and remember, the power comes from within (often sitting with your back leaning against a loving tree!)
    xxx

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    1. I really had nothing to give to my practice. Nothing at all. But the sky is bluer now.

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  5. Extremely relatable, so thanks for sharing! In a way, I think you can consider yourself lucky that isn't/wasn't your day job when you felt you needed this down time... when the guidance you TRULY needed wasn't there for YOU, even though you were dishing it out for everyone else... Good to see you back and know you're not alone. Blessings, Lisa

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  6. So good to hear from you again Carla. I am glad you are feeling better these days. Remember to take it slow; step by step, day by day
    Gentle hugs to you my friend

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    1. Thank you, Ellen. You're amazing.

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  7. This rang so true for me... The black dog grudges every spark of joy and dies it's best to keep us blinkered to the light... Love and healing Carla xo

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    1. Recovery takes as long as it takes. Thanks, Ragged Poet. x

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  8. I've been trying to get back into the tarot, as well - picking up my cards here and there. The past six years have been traumatic for me, and I've been very depressed, whilst others have been telling me that I should be okay (for various reasons), that it should be water under the bridge, etc. So I wanted to thank you for this post - and the reminder that it can take at least two years to feel normal again. With one trauma piled on another, and being under constant stress for a while there, I needed a reminder that the way I'm feeling is normal (or can be), after all that's happened.

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    1. Thanks for commenting, Angela. You take all the time you need. Hugs.

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  9. So glad to hear the sky is starting to look bluer again! And I get the "it takes time to heal" bit. My mum bought me Blue Sky July about six years ago, and I still cry and put it down every time I try to read it. After 8 years, I'm not yet ready (though I'm working on it). Glad that some parts are starting to feel worthwhile again! Spiritual anorexia be gone!!

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    1. I just requested Blue Sky July from the library. I'll finish it for you. x

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    2. Well, I've started on some trauma work, so maybe by the time we meet in May we can compare notes on it :)

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