We come to the end of June and I, for one, am happy to see it go. It wasn’t a terrible month but it was challenging and irritating and a bit frustrating. The Wildwood Tarot will retire as our deck of the month but before he goes I had a question: What was up with June? This is the answer I got
This is the spread I use when I don’t know which spread to use and it’s one I learned from Donnaleigh de LaRose. The four positions are from left to right: the current situation; the challenge; the advice; and the likely outcome of following the advice. Interesting, no?
The third of my five children graduated from highschool last weekend. Now what? It’s a new beginning for her and for us too(Ace of Arrows). We have more children out of school than in. She will be starting college in the Fall and that’s part of the new beginning as well. This card brought to mind the quote from Kahlil Gibran. In The Prophet he wrote: “You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.”
The challenge (Seven of Stones) reared its ugly head just as May ended. The same daughter was on the Senior Class trip to Disney World and she had a severe allergic reaction to something. She broke out in hives that came and went the first day there. The second morning she awoke with her tongue and all her extremities swollen. She had trouble breathing, couldn’t dress herself or get her shoes on. Thankfully the school nurse was on hand to help her, treated her right away with some medication and rushed her to the nearest Urgent Care center. Several trips to various doctors, an allergist included and we’ve discovered she is allergic to sunscreen. Specifically parabens. Do you know how many things have parabens? This card, Seven of Stones, is about healing and it’s also assessment. It’s about checking in with yourself and seeing what needs healing. Aside from the allergy there was stress making everything worse.
It’s emotional graduating from high school and it’s a bit frightening too. Life is getting real and all your insecurities stand up and say hello. There is tremendous pressure put on high school students and it’s not only unnecessary it borders on cruel. Almost no one knows what they want to do with the rest of their life when they are seventeen or eighteen but the faculty and staff at the school act as if these kids should know. The pressure to choose the right school is treated like a life or death decision. As if the wrong school is inescapable and will ruin the rest of your life. Then there are students who seem to have it all figured out. They’ve made decisions and are following them through. Good for them. Everyone celebrates those kids but if you aren’t one of them you feel as though you are a failure. That’s not good at all. Many of the kids my daughter graduated with she won’t see again until some high school reunion ten or twenty years from now. She has no way of knowing what they will really end up doing. Of all the college graduates I know only one who is working in their field of major study. One! No one really has it all figured out even at forty-five years old let alone seventeen. But these kids don’t have that perspective and the adults at the school have other reasons for pushing them into college that have more to do with the high school than the child’s future. All of that aside, she did graduate and is going to college but her head is still spinning with all sorts of wrong ideas. I think this is where the Three of Stones comes in.
The figure in this card is a Green Woman with her legs turning into roots and her hair is leaves. The thing that struck me about her is that she is grounded and she draws her strength from there. She seems to have lowered her center of gravity which improves her balance and she is centered between the upright stones. The keyword is Creativity which will be required to help my daughter see things more clearly but the groundedness and centeredness of the woman in the image really speaks more to what my daughter needs to get back to. Without the constant barrage from classmates and teachers regarding grades, graduation and college, I think she will relax back into herself. As the distance from highschool increases I can see her gaining the perspective she doesn’t completely have right now. Which brings us to the Stag. Here is an adult hybrid. He is half man, half animal and fully himself. He stands tall and looks you right in the eye. He holds a shield that is emblazoned with a tree like the Druidic tree of life and in the other hand has a double-headed ax. He is balanced. He is brave.
Looking at the cards left to right I can’t help but notice the posture of the figures. The arrow and the two Green Women are looking up but more level with each card. The arrow is higher than the healer who is looking up higher than the woman between the stones. Lastly the Stag is looking right at us. This too tells me that this month was about getting out of our head and into the world. For my daughter it was getting away from other peoples ideas and finding the inner guidance we all have so she can grow into that Stag and stand tall as who she really is.