Posts from the ‘The Eights’ Category

8 Wands and Flannel Flower

From the Robin Wood Tarot

From the Robin Wood Tarot

Flannel FlowerThe last week before Jason arrives, not as my friend or lover, but as my intended husband, my soul partner.

Is it any wonder that the stalled energy of the reversed 8 Wands should dominate?

The minutes are crawling toward the appointed hour but thankfully we have the spirit of playfulness and intimacy of Flannel Flower to see us through.

But the phone bills are going to be truly frightening.


8 Pentacles and Silver Princess


From the Robin Wood Tarot

From the Robin Wood Tarot

It has taken all the weeks of Jason’s visit and now his departure to really learn the lesson of the reversed 8 Pentacles. I hope I have learned it well.

This is the student’s card, the card of steady application and the hard, slow slog of learning new skills.

Reversed, it can indicate that a period of assessment is required. A time to review the lesson so far, spot the gaps, check on progress and make sure that blockbuster essay actually answers the question.

Silver Princess, which helps us identify our life direction and purpose, is a perfect match.

So what have I learned, and how does it help me?

Needless to say, our holiday was a delight. We swam, we walked the beach and shared the beauty of our little island paradise, lazed in the sun and delighted in each other’s company.

When he left I cried, of course, but I don’t think I will keep crying this time as I did before, when I wept solidly and inconsolably every day for a whole bloody year.

Perhaps my biggest learning was to understand better the reason for those tears.

I cried because there were things I had wanted to say to him but hadn’t, for fear of scaring him off, for fear of exposing myself to ridicule or exploitation.

But as I rested and relaxed with him and took the time to think about our relationship and what it means to me I realised my silence was nothing new.

When it came to a new relationship I behaved just as I had in my last one. I kept quiet, revealing just enough to let him know he’s got me, but never enough to let him know how much.

To keep quiet about my own fears and desires, to pour my energies into making someone else happy as if that’s sufficient… isn’t that just how I behaved with John?

No wonder John was surprised at my reaction when he said he didn’t love me any more and was leaving me for someone else.

Up to that moment, my default position was always to smile and say, of course dear, if that’s what makes you happy,

And this time?

Does it help a man to know that there’s a woman on the other side of the world weeping and wailing because he can’t give her the one thing she wants, his presence in her life?

Ever since that moment when our lips first crossed the line of friendship and this whole sorry saga began, I’ve followed his lead and agreed mutely that we can control this thing and step in and out of love as we choose.

But at what cost?

To open my heart and reveal the full extent of my feelings and my desires, that’s a scary thing.

But to skim lightly over the surface and avoid the hard truths is to risk the very foundation of our relationship, the true and honest friendship which brought us together in the first place.

It doesn’t matter that my motives were good, that it didn’t seem right to share the full burden of my heartache when there was nothing he could do about it.

Turns out there was one thing he could do, and he did it. He could share it.

So what did I learn? That when I finally speak what’s in my heart all else falls into place.

Not neatly, by any means. Jason’s gone, back to his wonderful career and his dank little flat, and I’m here finishing up the unpacking and preparing myself to go back to work.

Oh yes, I’ve shed a tear or two but I’m not grieving. Instead I feel complete, content and ready for the year ahead. And closer to Jason than I ever felt to anyone before.

I already knew 10,000 miles is nothing as the heart flies. It’s even less when another heart meets it halfway.

So, nothing is changed and yet everything has.

No more dancing around that silly imaginary line that we crossed so long ago now. There ain’t no going back to simple friendship but sharing the pain with honesty and trust goes a long way to making it bearable.

I do not cry or fly alone. We’re wingtip to wingtip across the ocean and on this journey for good or ill. At some point we must join up or part ways but whatever happens, I will not be choked into silence by my own fears.

The essay answers the question, time to return to the coursework of balancing our relationship with the other areas of my life until I can manage them all with authority.

9 Cups and Dagger Hakea

From the Robin Wood Tarot

My wise companions, Dagger Hakea and the reversed 9 Cups, say the answer is to turn inwards for a moment.

The 9 Cups is a difficult one to get a handle on and perhaps it’s that my deck doesn’t depict it very well for me. The Robin Wood Tarot shows a jolly looking overweight man surrounded by cups.

Dagger Hakea is for bitterness and resentments in close relationships. These are often unexpressed which is why family disputes are the most difficult to resolve.

The Nines are ruled by the Hermit and the Cups cover the emotional component of his journey, so perhaps the man on the card is filling an emotional hole with the pleasures of the Cups.

There is an ambivalent feeling to this card – it’s about entertaining, enjoyment and celebration and yet, and yet… At the same time, all the commentaries speak of something missing from the celebration and warn against over-indulgence.

Reversed, the 9 Cups suggests that something which has been hidden or suppressed may be revealed.

With that in mind I took some Dagger Hakea and asked my sub-conscious to present me with someone I hold resentment against.

I have consequently spent the week dealing with feelings, long suppressed, surrounding the various times my father let me down.

I finally know, after all these years, how the little girl I was felt when my dad said he’d give me up because his girlfriend didn’t like me, when he forgot my birthday, hadn’t noticed I was left-handed, and so many other carelessly inflicted wounds.

I had always thought it was strange that I seemed to feel no hurt or bitterness over these things. I only realised they were hurtful when I saw how people reacted when I told these stories as if they were funny.

Well, I never told the one about the girlfriend. There was no joking about that one and it has sat a long time on my heart, unexpressed.

It was a great relief to have a good cry.

An important part of the process of releasing that bitterness was also to forgive him and that has been a very beautiful and healing experience.

Going through this process at this time has also had an integral role in my decision over Jason’s visit.

Of course my low expectations of men in later relationships were inevitably formed in that primary one with my dad. Without realising it, I seemed to have married a man with similar tendencies.

Unlike my father and my ex-husband, Jason has never told me one thing and done another, nor has he ever placated me with empty promises or wooed away my hurts and disappointments with his charm.

Jason has always been utterly honest and cautionary about the limits of what he can offer me and I value that about him above all else.

Let him come. Let my dear friend come and enjoy the delights of summer with me, for even a Hermit craves company at times and what better company than a fellow traveller, taking a brief detour from his own lonely road?

8 Cups and Southern Cross

From the Robin Wood Tarot

This is one of those weeks when I’m unsure if I’m over-stretching the associations of this week’s Tarot, which was reversed.

But I’ll take the chance, inspired by its companion essence, for this week has been a glorious example of its positive expression.

Southern Cross is the ‘martyr’ essence. But it addresses that sense of victimisation and under-appreciation by opening us to our own power in shaping our circumstances.

It also awakens in us a sense of life’s abundance.

That’s exactly the sense I’ve taken throughout this week – my first in my new job. Reading about the positive expression of Southern Cross today was like reading a summary of my thoughts over the past week.

I cannot feel anything less than certain that my new role is a perfect combination of my skills and passions and strengths. I feel completely that I am doing exactly the right thing at exactly the right time and that everything preceding it has led inevitably here.

And I was even pondering – as I rearranged the contents of my new fridge – the nature of prosperity. I realised it was right there, in my fridge and its contents.

I don’t just have enough, I am prosperous. The food in my fridge is testament to that.

So what about my possibly over-stretched connection to the reversed 8 Cups? Upright, this is the card of turning away, of moving up and onward, of fulfilling a higher purpose.

Reversed, it can signify an unwillingness to move on or a reluctance to spend time alone.

Neither of those possibilities seems to fit but I have heard of a third interpretation which does.

That’s emotional exhaustion and it’s interesting that the other feature of my week has been the most extreme tiredness. I have fallen asleep in my chair well before 9pm several times.

Well, it’s a fair cop. I probably am emotionally exhausted and still waiting for the house to be sold from under me. Heck, I haven’t even started looking for a new place and I’m going to have to get cracking on that.

So ok, I am exhausted. Been here before. The difference this time? I have the luxury of taking a break on my beautiful veranda and recharging before I have to rejoin the fray.

Prosperity, indeed!


8 Pentacles and Wild Potato Bush

From the Robin Wood Tarot

After last week’s job application, this week was back down to business. I suppose that’s why I’ve turned up the diligent 8 Pentacles again.And the pool is closed for a few weeks, so Wild Potato Bush is here as a warning not to slide into inactivity.

Wild Potato Bush eases the frustration of physical restriction and of course the danger of physical inactivity for me is that I’ll seize up and really need some Wild Potato Bush!

That’s the trouble with ankylosing spondylitis. Gotta keep movin’ or the consequences get dire.

8 Pentacles and Tall Mulla Mulla

From the Robin Wood Tarot

After some rather unfocused weeks, rambling by moonlight through a vale of tears, this one felt like a return to business.

I swam, I did some writing, I did some inner work, and I had a good, if challenging, four days of Parliament.

In the context of this week’s cards, I will relate one incident which stood out.

The Minister was due to give a speech in the House and he and Carmen, a frenetic young advisor, were writing and rewriting it that morning while I typed up their revisions, moving paragraphs around and pasting figures in.

Once the Minister seemed happy with it, Carmen left the office on some errand and I was alone with the Great Man.

He sat at his big leather-topped desk and read the speech again, and then launched into the most amazing trantrum.

Suddenly the speech was all wrong, he was screaming and shouting that it wasn’t what he wanted and then, sputtering with rage and practically in tears, he flung the pages all over the floor.

So I fixed it. It was no big deal – getting words just the way they’re wanted is something I’ve spent a lifetime doing, even if it’s not how I’m earning my living just now.

It was a hark back to old times of rushing to get a tricky story written right on deadline and I was proud that I can still do it, and so easily.

But that wasn’t the 8 Pentacles aspect of the situation. It was being able to work effectively in such a stressful situation. It was being able to keep my cool and not let him fluster me.

I confess I was shaking a bit and I felt very uncomfortable but I don’t think he noticed. I finished the week feeling that I had once again managed to impress these people, for what that’s worth, and got over another hurdle by not getting overwhelmed in a stressful situation.

Tall Mulla Mulla is for people who avoid social interaction because of a fear of confrontation.

I, who once relished a good stand up, have feared confrontation too long. One more step successfully taken.

8 Wands and Macrocarpa

From the Robin Wood Tarot

Physical fitness and well-being, that’s what this week and these cards have been all about.

Since I started work in the Office of the Minister for Circumlocution and Obfuscation I’ve been swimming regularly before work at the public pool nearby.

My swimming stepped up a gear this week when I was handed a vital piece of information that I can’t quite believe I never figured out for myself.

You breathe OUT underwater.

So, in a very 8 Wands way, I’ve been streaking through the pool with new-found power and purpose.

Out of the pool, I’ve been feeling tired and drained, as my foot and hips have been playing up thanks to the ever-present burden of my ankylosying spondylitis.

Macrocarpa is a remedy for physical tiredness, especially the battered exhaustion brought on by pain.

In all, two highly appropriate cards for a very physical week.