It's been a long, winding and bumpy road.
And now that I've arrived… it's good to be here.
Throughout my high school years, I would regularly retreat to the local shopping centre to hang out in one of my 'hippy stores'. It was my escape. And you see, it was totally 'normal' for a teenager to tell their family they were going to the square, to hang out and spend their tiny pay-check buying stuff.
The perfect cover up!
I mostly went alone (or told friends I'd meet them at a certain time, arriving an hour earlier so that I could do my thing first.) It allowed me to spend time looking at what I wanted to look at. I didn't have to think, or explain, or put into words what I couldn't describe. I could just be.
And now that I reflect, it was about the only time I could safely listen to my intuition. Because that's where it always spoke the loudest. That's where I always felt 'free'.
I would walk around slowly, always drawn to the crystals first. Picking up pretty treasures and leather bound journals. Listening to the beautiful music they played and inhaling the incense they burnt. I was never 'into' anything in particular. I wasn't drawn to Angels at that time. I played it safe, and bought all the crystal beaded bracelets, toe rings and anklets.
And no wonder I wouldn't allow myself to delve deeper - even those were criticised by others!
But there was a corner I never ventured into...
Not out of fear.
More out of... intimidation.
It was the corner that I thought was for people who were really into this stuff. It was the area for the 'legit' ones. The Psychics and the proper Mystics. I imagined them coming in, with dreadlocks and tie-dye, buying their resources and tools - then heading back to their mysterious dens and sacred spaces with a purpose for it all. Foretelling the future. Reading people's minds. Confidently calling themselves a Clairvoyant, or an Intuitive.
Who was I to dabble in that?!
And, although being in this place made me feel the most 'me' I ever felt - I never allowed myself to even browse this area. (Secretly grasping a quick side glance at it all, as I walked past. Hoping the shop owner wouldn't see me, that phoney girl, trespassing there!)
This section was filled with books, Tarot, Oracle Cards, CD's...and other things that excited me!
What would my parents say, if I brought home a deck of Tarot Cards?! They didn't even know I came here - or meditated in private! It certainly wasn't very 'Catholic' of me. The fear of being questioned, about any of this, overwhelmed me.
Then one day, I picked up a deck...
It was circa 2005-ish. After my parents divorce - when my heart broke for the first time and my family fell apart. I was gutted. Confused. I split up with my long term boyfriend, sold my half of the house to him, quit Uni, abandoned my younger brother and sister, my puppy, my hometown - and fled to the sunny Gold Coast. I couldn't deal. I needed to escape.
It was to become the most self-destructive phase of my life. I found myself overpowered by depression, anxiety, extremely dark moments, little to no self respect and a turbulent, violent and all-consuming relationship. One day, in a greyed out haze, I found myself retreating to the shops. (Funny that the shopping centre is my least favourite place to go now.)
I ventured into one of the hippy stores (maybe looking for some light in this fog) and I picked up a deck of cards. They appeared to be, what I must have thought, 'non-threatening'. OR, they'd accidentally wandered next to the crystals, away from their tribe in the spiritual corner! They were called 'Healing the Mind and Spirit' cards - and I took them out of their box to have a look.
I pulled a card and it said...
'I can forgive others, even if they have hurt me. Forgiving doesn't mean forgetting.' I began to cry. It hit me like a lightning bolt. It wasn't ALL the words on there that resonated with me. I'm not even sure if it was the words, or the picture. (Which showed a defeated girl, turning her back on someone that was trying to seek her forgiveness.) It was the recognition and realisation that
1. I had been hurt and I was hurting; and
2. I didn't have to be forced into forgetting anything!
The entirety of my current relationship was based on being hurt, having to forget about it and then moving on. As if no injustice had ever been done. And the family turmoil - well that was all swept under the rug. Anytime I tried to talk about it, ask questions, or try to get some clarification around the bomb that had been dropped - I was ssshh'd. No one was strong enough to 'get real' about it. (One of the main reasons I left.)
I stopped the tears - and grew 10 foot tall in an instant. I bought that deck of cards. I just knew they were meant for me. Plus, I'd had enough of being hurt. Of not being able to express myself. Express who I was, or what I was feeling. Of having to run away. Of having to accept shitty behaviour from those around me. It was like this deck of cards understood everything - without saying a word.
It was the first time I really trusted the presence and support of a higher power. I'd always felt it, but had never really allowed myself to embrace it.
And from that moment onwards, I consulted the cards - for everything...
- I asked the questions that no one else could help me in answering.
- I asked for guidance.
- I asked for support.
- I asked for help.
- I asked for clarity.
- It was my way of tapping into myself.
Over the next few years, I had one life changing moment after another.
I escaped that relationship. I became independent. I listened to my Intuition more than I ever had before. I did what I wanted to do. I connected with more spiritual people. And I met an amazing man who supported me in all of it - even when he didn't always understand it.
One day, during a reading, I was asked by a (proper, legit, fair dinkum) Clairvoyant if I knew that I was Psychic? "Yes", flew out of my mouth - from where, I don't know. I didn't even have time to think about it. It wasn't an arrogant yes. But it was matter of fact. There was no doubt in there at all. It was like something came over me - and I 100% believed in what I had said. She smiled, and her energy spoke volumes. She felt my relief of finally being able to identify it. Admit it.
That moment opened up doors for me.
It freed me of the disconnection I'd felt - to this realm, to this energy, to this group of people, to my true self. And so began the journey of following the guidance from my first ever (beautiful, loving and supportive) Spiritual Mentor. Without 'telling' me to do anything; I responded with embracing her gentle guidance. I read books. I bought my first deck of Angel Cards. I meditated more. I journaled. I grew a larger collection of crystals. I dove right in. I was thirsty for knowledge!
The Angel Cards became my newest guides.
I went from reading the handbook, every time I pulled a card or laid out a spread - to doing readings intuitively, from the heart and through 'feeling' my way through it. I stopped looking at the words. I looked at the pictures, tapped into the energy and messages instead - and shared what 'came through' by just letting it flow.
I did card readings for myself, my partner, my best friends, my sister…
I loved doing it, because every time I shared the messages with them, they released a whole lot of blocks. They cried, they smiled, they had massive realisations within themselves and they had a safe space to gain insight into their lives.
Yet, I kept it hidden (for years!) from the people I thought would criticise it. I wanted to protect this. It was my thing. It was an extension of me. A part of my true self! Me - exposed and raw. And that worked for a bit, until I felt like I was living a complete lie all the time! Hiding my cards, making my loved ones swear they wouldn't tell anyone about it and not being able to really talk to people about the things I loved and were passionate about...
So it was time to, gradually and hesitantly, come out of the spiritual closet.
I shared who I really was with more people. And then a few more. (Something I'm still working on!) And then...I felt the gentle nudge to step it up again.
I'd been guided to learn Tarot for years, but had that same familiar feeling of 'spiritual corner of the hippy store intimidation' around it. I really did not want to let that take over again! I was stronger than I was back then - so I needed to just go for it...
I bought a simple pack of Tarot. But I didn't connect with it. So I bought a 2nd deck. The traditional Rider Waite Tarot Deck. Developed by Dr Arthur Edward Waite (1857 - 1942). Originally published in 1910. Wow. This was hard core. But I loved it. The images were so detailed - and I loved discovering their hidden messages and symbolism. The energy, the mysticism, the ancient wisdom and the history flowed right through the cards!
But the Major Arcanas, Minor Aracanas, Pentacles, Cups, Wands and Swords...How was I ever going to learn them all?!
I asked myself why I was getting so technical and logical. (I'd never approached anything else in my life this way!) I received the message that - yes this will be a journey, but the rewards will be great. Why was I trying to rush? The best fun was going to be in the process - the learning of it all!
And it is the best part of all of this. So many discoveries, so many ah-ha moments, so many insights. I've come to a place where I'm trusting my guidance and my intuition - and it's overflowing into every part of my life. My confidence in my spirituality and gifts grows every day; as I become familiar with each card, different spreads and the messages that my Guides are sending through to me.
At first I thought of the enormous amount of time it was going to take - to individually connect with 78 cards! But I pushed my negative self talk and ego aside and...just started.
Every day I ask my Guides what they'd like me to know. I pull one card and, without looking at any handbooks or explanations, I write down whatever comes through - what I think it means, and what the message is. Later that day, I reflect and see what happened during the day and how it related to my card. Every single day there has been a direct correlation, or message - and it has been one of the most liberating experiences.
But it's not just about the cards.
For me, they have been a tangible way to translate all that has ever come through, from a young age - energetically and intuitively. All the things I could never explain or describe, that would flow through me. All the things that I'd seen, heard, experienced and felt (from somewhere other than 'here') that brought criticism, screwed up faces and judgement - from those that didn't understand.
And now I had a vessel! Symbolism. A physical, earthly, measure that could assist me make sense of it all - and communicate it! As Rider Waite said, the cards were... "created to communicate esoteric principles through symbols."
I'd walked over to the spiritual corner of the hippy store! (Where I'd always been welcome.) I'd made the connection between all that I'd known intuitively about ancient wisdom, earthly, astrological, seasonal and universal cycles and energies. The doors had swung wide open.
I finally got it. And now it's my job to hold a spirited space for others - using the cards as my tools. To share the messages for them.
"Don't die with your music still in you" - Wayne Dyer
If you've ever felt the same way, I'm holding out my hand to Mentor anyone letting fear or uncertainty hold them back - because I know you have greatness to share and I now know the steps to help you shine it into the world!
Click here to read more about my new Mentorship Program.