“Experience the Magic of Tarot” was an invitation I just received. Tarot Cards? Admittedly, they have been around for generations, and the image of an old gipsy reading fortunes is part of many plays and even children’s books and illustrations we grew up with. Even today, when I visit certain areas of Toronto I see signs on homes inviting people to come in and have an expert read their future in Tarot Cards. I must admit, I am an infidel when it comes to card readings. Being an Art Therapist, I pride myself on using evidence-based theories, and practice trauma-informed therapy modalities. Yet I do listen to intuition and gut feelings. This causes me to pause and investigate their origin. I firmly believe that our issues are in our tissues, as Pat Ogden, PhD, a pioneer and founder of the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute, and one of my heroes, claims.
My downfall is surveys and quizzes. Two years ago I answered a survey that promised a gift of thanks for completing it. Of all the gifts available I chose a women’s watch. All I had to do was pay $4.75 shipping with my credit card. In hindsight a red light should have blinked in my head. But when the watch arrived, and it was a large man’s watch, I wrote the company and told them they’d made a mistake. “No problem, we apologize,” was their response, and lo and behold, a lovely ladies’ watch arrived in less than a week. I paid no more attention, and left with my husband for our “snow bird flight” to warmer climes for the next five months. Our tenant kept all the mail which accumulated, and when we returned I found 5 more watches of various shapes and sizes. I really thought Christmas has come in May. Not until I checked my credit-card bills did I see that I was charged $160.00 a month for “The Fashion Watch of the Month Club,” which I had evidently enrolled in. I did manage to cancel my “membership” 4 watches later. It was an expensive lesson. My children and their spouses, as well as my grandchildren, all received a watch for their birthdays.
I guess quizzes are not in the same category, and especially if they pique your curiosity. So when I received an email from an address I recognized, I did not trash it. Besides an explanation about Tarot Cards and their history, there was a quiz which promised to let me know immediately “which Tarot Suite you belong to.” This made me very curious, so I answered the questions.
To my amazement and surprise I was told that I belong to the Water Suit (Cups). This suit means you nurture others and yourself, and are caring and intuitive. That is the message I received from Radleigh Valentine who teaches the use of Tarot Cards. He also claims that those in the Water Suit experience life through emotions and walk around as if they have a label on their forehead saying “Tell me your problems.” And people do, since they know you can help. I guess I chose the right profession in becoming an Art Therapist. I deal mainly with adults who suffer from trauma, bereavement, and depression. The down side of the Water Suit is that sometimes we do not see or pay attention to our own needs, and do not have good boundaries. So we need to pay attention and create a balance. Interestingly, this is what I strive for. I learn ways of looking after my needs. This means practicing mindfulness and being aware of the here and now. It is important for me to find time to enjoy life and to feel good. By practicing love and gratitude life becomes fuller and I am able to be calmer and more stable in this Corona time of chaos. I guess no matter what suit you belong to, the idea is to get balanced by the attributes of the other suits. We all seek balance in our lives, and we can all use help to guide us. Art Therapy or any other therapy may be one way; Tarots may be another. We are each entitled to live by our own beliefs.
I also got a bonus. Apparently I am protected by the Archangel Raphael, who is emerald green, and teaches the one he protects to have not only love for others, but self love and self worth. Surprisingly, my favorite color is emerald green. On a recent professional trip to Colombia I purchased a small natural emerald set in a silver ring. I hope it will help remind me of what Valentine claims the message of my protector, Archangel Raphael, brings to me. “You are a beautiful child of the divine, deserving love, not just from other people, but also from yourself.” I guess one does not have to believe in Tarot in order to enjoy the lovely message.