Sunday, 11 August 2013

What Bars Your Way?

For our second day with Lisa Chow's Oracle Tarot Deck (self-published, 2012), we have a rather more evocative card than yesterday's Queen.

We have what looks like a circus cage, holding in a wild profusion of vegetation between its Swords/bars.  There are cheerful sparkles in the card corners, and a jaunty banner with the card's title flying from the top of the cage, giving it that circus air.  And to be honest, the plants seem as though they are staring to spill out, though there is no vegetation beyond the cage.

I like this image, with its sense of wild abandon reigned in.  It speaks to being trapped, though it feels more unfair than self-imposed: human implements locking in natural beings.  And yet, isn't that part of traditional Eight of Swords interpretations: our minds locking us away from expressing ourselves authentically?  It can also be read at an intuitive level as us feeling trapped by other people's ideas and conventions, being reigned in by other people's expectations of what we should do, how we should look.  Altogether, an interesting card!

I have to admit, I've quite often felt hemmed in by other people's expectations of me as a mother.  You wouldn't believe how often people have come up to me on the street and told me I was doing something 'wrong'!  Not dressing my son warmly enough (he overheats easily, which causes him painful spasms), not giving him enough freedom to explore (he can't walk safely by himself as he has no save reflex and slow responses to external stimuli), not giving him food or drink when we're eating (he's tube fed, it's quite subtle).  I'm getting better at brushing such comments off, and in a strange way it actually helps that as he gets older his condition is becoming more apparent.  Still, I recognise that part of the issue is also with my own thoughts, feeling reluctant for others to know about him.

I am grateful to open up more about my son.


  1. I'm often floored by the stupid things people say. Which reminds me of Carla's post about Right Speech today. I will take the two draws as reminder to be mindful of my words. x

    1. As I say, it happens less often now. And I think PLN is right, these are people trying to feel better about themselves. I was quite surprised, though, because living in London you don't often get strangers talking to you much. Seems like somehow kids make a difference...

      I shall pop over to Rowan Tarot now :)

  2. I like this card. Really nice idea and so different from yesterdays.

    Oh, people and their ignorance, It seems that everyone has something to say, doesn't it? There is always going to be some sticky-beak with an opinion, who fills a need to make them self feel better by getting busy in your life. At least you know the reasons why you're doing what you're doing.

    1. It's funny, until I had a child I rarely noticed sticky-beaks :) And it's been bizarrely hilarious, like one woman who then went back to her own family, with her husband smoking while he held their child's hand! Ah well, as you say, at least I know why I do what I do, and that I am doing the best I can :)

  3. Sticky beaks? That's a fun term.

    Anyway...ugh. Yes, I do think it has everything to do with the person who says it, and nothing to do with you. They perceive themselves as a hero, someone doing the right thing, when really no one knows more about the situation than the people involved. It's a classic emotional fusion thing--trying to get you to fix something when there may not be anything to fix. People have no emotional boundaries!!

    Unfortunately I have been a person without emotional boundaries, where I fretted about my siblings or whoever (of course myself, too) and wanted to tell them not to do this or that. Thank goodness I am growing out of that. I think it shows confidence in the other person to not do that. How do I know that the terrible/stressful relationship they are in is not benefitting them on some level? Or how do I know that interfering may not make things worse? I definitely had this idea of rescue--it felt like my duty. It makes it harder, in my opinion, when the person is someone you care about and you're worried for.

    When it comes to strangers my most beloved practice is to compliment people on what they are doing. How lovely their kids are, how beautiful their shirt, dress or hat. I think about what would make someone feel good. But it's still about me on some weird level--making someone else feel good makes me feel good. I was talking to Jeremy about this the other day--whether we know it or not, we all have our own personal reasons for saying and doing everything--and it's a good thing to come to terms with!

    Excuse the weird and long ramble. And sorry about the sticky beaks!


  4. Hi MM,

    Ha, yes, I think it's much easier to stick your nose in with family, as you love them and care what happens to them. Doesn't necessarily make it easier to have someone sticking their nose in, but at least understandable.

    I like your policy of complimenting strangers. That it also makes you feel good is no bad thing - win-win :)

    Thanks for the support,
    Chloë xxx