searching in shadows

i need to write here more. instagram has been wonderful for finding community and building relationships, but i want to make sure i'm also writing for ME, not just for likes and pretty photos. i got into tarot for growth and self-discovery, and i want to continue to understand the cards and develop a relationship with them. the group dynamics feel strained, and as i come out of my depression, i'm very worried that i've damaged these friendships beyond repair. i don't want to lose these girls, any more than i already have from circumstance. i actually created my own spread for the first time today, and i hope to make more as they're needed.


1. the situation/relationship right now

i pulled the two of swords as my card for a shadow i may be ignoring, and it felt right on IMG_0289point. i'm in a battle with what i'm worried about and what's actually real, and i'm too afraid to ask the hard questions. i'm paralyzed, afraid to move in any direction out of fear it'll be the wrong one. what if i ask my friends where they are and they truly don't want to be in my life anymore? what if i'm being impossibly selfish and someone has something difficult going on, and in my depression no one told me? what if absolutely nothing is wrong and i'm just lonely, realizing that my friends are just fine without me? every outcome feels awful. the two of swords pushes me to grow up, face the situation head on, and make some progress, rather than cowering in a stalemate.

2. me & my recent behavior in relationship

i pulled the father of swords, which feels pretty accurate. i'm distant, judgmental, sure that i'm seeing things clearly when i'm actually just viewing them through a narrow lens. i'm sure that they don't care about me, sure that they're ignoring me, sure that they're father-of-swordstoo lazy to reach out. but what i have done to help? am i contacting them, offering help or a shoulder to cry on? have i been so selfish that no one wants to help me anymore? it's definitely possible.

i'm trying to push emotion out of this situation, since it feels like i'm drowning in sadness and anxiety and fear. but that's simply making space for me to decide who's right and wrong in the situation, when it's far more complicated than that. i'm dealing with a severe mental illness, and it's not my friends' job to fix that for me. we've probably all made mistakes, but there is a way to move forward, and i need to be honest and clear in my views of what that is. i need to be fair, to be wise, to see things as they truly are.

3. them & their recent behavior in relationship

for this section, i gave each friend her own card to represent them and our relationship, and then also slipped a card underneath to offer advice on repairing this specific relationship. it was important to me to honor my friendship with each of these women, as they're very different and we're dealing with different issues in each one.

IMG_2255tatum: the moon, a card of mystery, wildness, shadows. i really love this card, and i know she does too - the moon is beautiful, quiet, peaceful, strong, and can twist situations into something complicated and confusing. it can reveal and create secrets. things get easily misconstrued. my relationship with tatum is similar - we love each other deeply, but i often don't understand her when things get difficult. i know how to take care of her, but i don't know how to rely on her - until i have to, and then she usually steps up. sometimes i'm hurt by how she handles things, and it often feels like she disappears when i really need her. the last few weeks have been very confusing, as it seems like she wants to help but doesn't know how, even when i explain to her what i need. we're not communicating well, but i don't think it means that we're not still close friends.

what can i do to help heal this relationship? the hermit, a card of quiet reflection, introspection, and meditation. i've been giving the relationship space, and this makes it seem like i should continue to do that - give us both time and space to think through what we need. it could also suggest that we need some time together, without the other girls - perhaps i should give her more time to recover from me, but when she reaches out, we can spend some time just us. talk through what's happened, check in with each other in person, really listen and reflect on what we can do better. i don't want to be a bad friend to her, and i know she wants to be here for me too.

hannah: the world, a card of completion, wholeness, harmony. hannah has said this to IMG_2256me too, but in some ways i feel like my friendship with her is the most complete. we really understand each other, we just click in a way i don't always relate to people. i feel like we have similar instincts, we view the world in a similar way, and when i'm with her, i feel like she gets me and i get her. our friendship feels very whole in that way, and i think she's navigated my depression better than anyone else in the group. i hope this card also means that she still loves me, that our relationship isn't fragmented like the others, and that she's happy and doing things she loves.

how can i help this relationship? mother of pentacles, a card of love, support, and compassion. i think we've been doing a good job trying to support each other, but i'll keep reaching out occasionally, making sure she knows that i love her and care about her. this is a card of patience and kindness, and while i might not get to see her for awhile, i'll keep extending that same kindness that she's been giving me. i think we're okay.

IMG_2257beth ann: the nine of pentacles, a card of stability, happiness, and contentment. i've been really worried about BA and the last message i sent, that she didn't reply to - not sure how to move forward, how she's feeling, what's going on. i've talked to her the least in the last few weeks, and i don't really know what's going on with her. this card gives me hope that things are actually okay, and that she didn't reply simply because i told her it wasn't necessary. she may feel safe and secure right now, both in our relationship and in her own life, which is wonderful - i don't want to keep worrying about if i've messed this one up.

how can i help this relationship? the lovers, a card of respect, unity, and joy. what a relief! we are already in a good place, but i need to extend gratitude, kindness, and a lot of respect for her and who she is. make sure she knows how much you appreciate her, listen when she needs you, and be grateful and loving in your relationship with her. we have a really good vibe going, and are stronger together.

4. what can i do to improve the relationship overall?

judgment, a truly incredible card for this position. all of my cards were pretty positive IMG_0372and incredibly helpful, but this one symbolizing letting go and leaving fears behind feels like an amazing gift. i'm escaping my depression, finally releasing that darkness, and these fears about my friendships are just that - fears. they're probably all busy, dealing with other things, and just because things are getting quiet doesn't mean i've ruined everything with something i can't control. i shouldn't be afraid to reach out, to support them, to extend kindness and love.

i think it's gonna be okay.