Yesterday I had a particularly rough therapy session. I decided about two months ago to stop contact with my parents. I also decided not to tell them that, or to try to have any kind of closing conversation about it because I knew it wouldn’t go anywhere or change anything. But of course, partially because I didn’t inform them that I’m ignoring them and partially because my mother has made denial into almost a superpower, she has been trying to get in touch with me.
Every time I see her name on my phone it triggers my Fight/Flight response. I go into what I call Battle Mode. A rush of adrenaline, stomach clenched, chest tight, heart pound, feeling like I can’t breath. Every one of my senses goes on full alert. And actually, my Fight/Flight response is not to fight or to flee, it’s the third option – Freeze.
This combined with getting dumped earlier this week sent my body into full on panic mode. I totally shut down. Felt the gates to any emotions or feelings of connection to my body slam shut.
I went into therapy yesterday and I had a meltdown. I thought I had made some much progress. I thought I was getting somewhere. And I have and I am. But this was a reminder of how much work I still have to do.
This morning I woke up and asked the cards “How can I love myself today?”
These were not the cards I was hoping for.
The top card, 7 of Cups was my main pull, with the other two acting as supporting/informing cards. I mean, I don’t think there’s is much mystery here.
The 7 of Cups is – I think – generally a card about having too many choices, being distracted, not focusing on what we want. But The Wild Unknown describes it as being about manipulation, deception. I don’t use reversals, and when I turned it over I wasn’t sure for a moment if it was right side up or not. This, I think, it the key to the card. Six of the cups are one way and one is turned the other. Six cups are on the “moon side” and one is on the “sun side.” Since the moon is traditionally a symbol of deception, or at least introspection, this card seems to be saying that there seem to be seven options, but really, maybe there is only one? Maybe if I really think about it, there is only one way to go?
The 8 of Cups is a card about walking away from a bad situation. There is nothing to be gained. Nothing left to salvage. The cups are all broken and a mountain looms in the distance. It’s time to climb the mountain. It’s going to suck, but it’s what you have to do.
And Death, which is a card that often gets a bad rep. It’s about the cycle of life, death and rebirth. My favorite portrayal of it is the Shadowscapes Tarot that shows it as the Phoenix. Here it looks more grim, but still, old must give way for there to be space for the new.
Since the later two inform the former, I’d say the message is clearly that it is time to walk away, for real. Not just to ignore the situation, like I have been these past few months. It’s been nice to have a break, to just pretend it doesn’t exist, as if my stopping contact would magically change things. But now it’s time to really deal with it all. To grieve the loss, to make way for what’s coming.
Death signals to me that there rebirth coming, but it’s not in the cards yet because it’s too far away.
Get comfortable, they are telling me, you’re gonna be stuck in this shit show a while longer. So deal with it.