Monday, August 1, 2022

Tarot Blog Hop: Junk Mail tarot


Our fearless wrangler for this Blog Hop is Joy Vernon and she has given us an assignment to create tarot cards out of junk mail.   We were asked to choose anything that comes through our mail slot, scan the images, add a border and title, and explain why we chose the image and how it reminds us of a tarot card.

I decided to take this exercise one step further and before I set out to find my images, I set my intention to receive whatever message the universe had for me.  Although I wasn't consciously thinking of Luke, pictured above,  the messages I received were clearly from him from the first card to the last.

This image was taken from an ad for University Hospitals Cardio center and the image just screamed three of swords at me as the way the image is constructed, it looks as if the spine is three swords piercing the heart.  I was also just taken by the beauty of the heart in this image as it was a reminder that despite all of the heartache I have been through, my heart is still beating and with each beat, I heal a little bit more.

Interestingly, as I was writing this, my phone started buzzing to remind me that it was my very beloved Aussie Shephard's death day.  We got Luke in 2007, two weeks after my ex and I bought our first home.  I had gone to Orphans of the Storm to look for a dog and Luke picked me.  I'd taken several other dogs out in to the play yard, but he was the only one that kept coming back to me to make sure I was still there.  Even though he was supposed to be the family dog, he was really my dog and he saved my life when I got divorced.  I fell into such a deep depression that I didn't even want to get out of bed to take care of myself.  However, I had to get out of bed to take care of Luke and when we'd go on walks, it was almost as if he was cheering me on and telling me that I could do it.

It has been five years since that horrible Sunday when we woke up to a very sick dog.  The only kind thing to do was to let him go, but it broke my heart to say goodbye.  However, he has never truly left my side and it is easier now to remember the happiness and joy he brought to my life.
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This image from an ad for a vacation spot was the quintessential three of cups as it depicts three women raising their cups and bonding over a shared meal.  I have to be honest and say that the three of cups is a hard card for me because I don't have a lot of friends and I'm fairly awkward at small talk so going out to dinner is hard for me.  There is a part of me that prefers deep conversations than small talk.

However, this card showed up as a reminder that you don't get to the deep conversations without small talk.  No one jumps in and starts talking about their deepest darkest secrets.  We start with the small talk, then get to the deeper bonds.  This card is a challenge for me to find activities where I do feel comfortable and that can lead to deeper friendships.

As I reflect a little deeper on this card, I realize that this card is also Luke's way of telling me that friendship and happiness comes in all different shapes and sizes.  My marriage was miserable and our family was very dysfunctional.  However, once I was over the initial pain of my divorce, I realized that while our family of four had been incredibly unhappy, my new family of three people and an amazing dog was actually very happy.  I've formed deeper relationships with my adult children and every so often we do raise a cup of good cheer and toast our good fortune.

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The Strength card traditionally depicts a woman with a lion, but I loved this image because it showed that men could be gentle to in their interactions with animals.  Although this cougar might have been drugged, the ranger is still showing kindness and gentleness as he checks his teeth.  This card was a reminder for me that gentleness of spirit should be gender free and that all of us can be kind and gentle with animals and humans.

I hate to say it but I've been on kind of an anti-man kick lately as there is so much toxic masculinity in the world today that it is hard to remember that there  are good men out there.  This card was a good reminder that not all men are jerks and there are some who are loving and kind, to humans and animals.

The other lesson of this card reflects back to the awful day that Luke died.  It took incredible inner strength and love to stay in the room when the vet injected the medicine that would stop his heart.  It was heartbreaking to sit there knowing that he would be leaving us soon and that his leaving would rip a hole in my heart.  However, I could not imagine his pain if his family wasn't there for him in those last few moments.  He had been returned to the shelter three times before we took him home and abandoning him in his final moments would have been immensely cruel.

One of the lessons that Luke taught me in his final moments was agency.  There was a couch in the room and there was a carpet that he could have laid on, but with his last bits of energy, he crawled over to the patch of sunlight on the tile floor and he died with the sun warming his face one last time. 

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As I was sorting through all the junk in my recycle bin, I came across a mailer from Orphans of the Storm, which is the shelter where we adopted Luke from 15 years ago.  I'm not even sure how we are still on their mailing list as we've moved several times since we adopted him.  It was was interesting that this showed up today because as I said above, it was five years ago today (July 30th) that Luke died.  

The six of pentacles is about giving and receiving and when you adopt an animal, you are saving their life, but they give so much more than take.  All of the dogs I've had in my life have helped me be a better human being and the love they give is the most unconditional love in the world. Loving a dog is amazing, but it is also hard because you know that one day they are going to leave and break your heart into pieces.  

As I write this, I realize this post has come full circle because losing Luke was definately a three of swords experience, but having Luke in my life taught me to love deeper and to know that there is still love after heartbreak.  Luke is still in my heart, but he broke my heart so wide open that there was room for more love.  Four months after he passed, we adopted Clark (the black dog below) and a year later we adopted Wendy. 

Although there aren't any coins in the picture below, this card is a good representation of six of coins energy because I was eating when the picture was taken and they were clearly expecting me to give some of my food to them so they could very graciously receive it.



3 comments:

  1. Wow, what a powerful post, Raine! I love it. I am impressed with what great images you got from the junk mail too -- It's really easy to see the four tarot cards in those images. I also had problems with most images being landscape orientation, but I love your solution of filling in the space with free verse. I love this post!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Joy--Thank you. I have to be honest and saying I was kind of dreading this exercise, but it turned out to be really fun.

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  2. I'm sorry to hear you were dreading it. But I'm glad it turned out to be fun!

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