of shadow work
facing the darkness /
to live in the light
to live in the light
I love y'all. I love this work. I love how you show up for yourselves & for each other. (btw)
Today we're going to do a 2 for 1 with the Eight of Cups (Saturn in Pisces) & the Three of Wands (Sun in Aries). I'm going to move through it kind of fast, but that's the vibration of these particular cards, I'm learning.
This Eight of Cups is a combination of the Saturn (the World) & Pisces (the Moon). Saturn (the World) is the pressure & protection to complete certain generational cycles in order to carry familial karma into bigger & better things. Once again, Pisces (the Moon) is the long dark road through the depths of your soul where you face your fears & move beyond them. When you put these two cards together, you get someone who is no longer afraid of the Big Bad Wolf. This is the experience of not being scared of the dark to the point that you are the thing that goes bump in the night, because you've grown confident you can figure it out & keep it moving.
Now let's look closely at the Eight of Cups:
The first thing I notice is that this person is elderly, yet on the move (climbing hills?!) no less. It doesn't matter how long it took them to get started, they are determined to see it through because they are the missing cup (aren't messing up). Slow & steady wins the race. Some people might avoid this particular walk because it's two lakes through hills (too late to heal), but that's crazy. As long as you understand that no matter how old you are, you have to right foot hill (the right to heal) & you if you put effort into putting your heel in (healing), then you're headed in the right direction. The only question though, is whether this person will ever return from whence they came (since their back is to where they left)? Now that they're healed of the past, will they continue to move on the lawn (moving on?) Or will they one day red-turned back (return back)? Especially since they've leaned on a stick for themselves (learned to stick up for themselves). And technically, does it even matter? There's hills up ahead (healing ahead) & there's hills behind (healing behind). When you're on a hilly (healing) journey, wherever you find yourself becomes an opportunity to elevate & grow.
Which brings us to the Three of Wands (Sun in Aries). Notice how we move from a card with Moon overtones into a card that represents the Sun. But wasn't it time? If we look back at the Eight of Cups, notice how the Moon is drawn as both a quarter moon AND full moon. So many phases of learning to live in varying shades of dark. Finally, with the Three of Wands, we emerge into the light. (Still with our back turned tho, interesting...)
The Three of Wands is a combination of the Sun & Aries (the Emperor). The Sun represents the joy of our soul (& spiritual gifts!) upon completing a prison sentence in healing darkness. The Emperor (Aries) represents the most primal, powerful (yet slightly undefined) part of ourselves that executes a master plan to get us where we want to be (& the bravado to figure out the rest). So as simple as the Three of Wands looks (1 + 2 =3, yeah?), somehow it's not exactly that simple. This is when we realize that ideally isn't the same as actually. With the Sun + Emperor combo, you've just inherited a brand new spirit, who then has to figure out how to handle the things your old spirit consciously (& subconsciously!) asked for. It's like being pregnant & having to eat all the foods you craved last week lol. But do you even want that stuff anymore??
Let's look closer at the Three of Wands*:
*(First let me say that this card + the Three of Swords were the only two slightly changed from the original Rider Waite. Typically the Three of Wands features a man focused on ships coming in from the distance; however Julia interpreted the ships as hands in the water, & changed the scene from a man expecting ships to a man watching people drown. I personally interpret the hands as our ancestors who jumped overboard from slave ships waving hi to let us know that no matter how hard it gets, life goes on).
We have a man facing out to sea (see). There are two older wands (old wants) standing behind him, & his hand is wrapped firmly around his new wand (new want). He received his old wands (old wants), but with his back turned, one can assume he doesn't want them anymore. He didn't expect to not want what he used to want either; this twist of fate took him by the sun rise (took him by surprise). Whoever is watching his turned back can see his open red cape (he hopes you're ok), but it's also clear he's not about to turn around to find out. There's no more night sky (no more nice guy). The Emperor has become ruthless with his desires. With the bandage come down from his eye, he can finally see the light. He can clearly see what he's looking at. In the distance, mountains in the sea (mounting certainty) that if he waits long enough, he'll see the sun (see the ONE). There's only one wand-on-his-arm (only one he wants on his arm). It's sad that some wands (ones) are left behind but that's just the way it is.
When you put these two energies together (Eight of Cups + Three of Wands), you have a couple scenarios:
1) You've healed (at long last!) from certain situations that used to drain your confidence, because now you've learned to stick up for yourself! You return to those situations (Eight of Cups) only to discover that those folks can't break you like they used to because... you can't be broken like you used to. Yet your indifference & independence is like a magnet that makes the past person/people suddenly desire you, because they are craving the opportunity to reject you. (Three of Wands) Yet they are also repelled & irritated because your new found confidence is denying their fix. So as badly as they want to embrace you (to reject you), they punish you by turning their back instead. Ignoring your presence is the only way they can exert control. (I don't wand you anymore, because you've gone too far on your hilly journey.) Which, if you're not completely healed can trigger you into trying to get this person to turn around & acknowledge your healing (I don't care that you don't care, see?!?!) , not realizing that the very act of getting them to notice you is setting you up for what they really want, which is to suck you in again & reject you again. Game, set, match, you lose.
2) You've healed (at long last!) from situations that drained your confidence & instead of returning to old trauma bonds to show off your new soul, you MOVE ON. (Eight of Cups). From your new perspective (Three of Wands), you literally see the light & realize that there are no relationships to save, because they're dead in the water. Yes, the dead can communicate (hey, just checking on you, ain't heard from you in awhile), but you dare not step one foot off your hill (healed) to help a dead thing that only wants to suck you in. By not playing the game (at all!), you win.
Here's my Eight of Cups / Three of Wands Story:
This has to do with the boy/man from my five of cups story, the one who I thought was my "twin flame," & tried to go back to over & over during the last 22 years. Our relationship is very karmic, & any attempt at resolution dissolves into a predictable, unwinnable argument called "but I only did that because you did this."
During my marriage, he was the third person in our bed. Either I was trying not to think about him (which meant I dreamed about him), or I was only talking to him a little bit (which meant he was asking to see me), or I was talking to him ALOT (which meant me whining & fussing about him ghosting our conversations to remind me that I'm the married one but he's single af), or we were (very rarely) planning meet-ups with lots of sexual tension (but no actual cheating!) while my husband called my phone back to back to back to back to back to back, in tears. (I know, we're terrible people)
Anyway, finally everything came to a head in 2019 when I became serious that I really was leaving my marriage, & I wanted to BE WITH HIM. Suddenly the games got real because there was a realistic possibility that we could have a grown-up committed relationship with accessibility & accountability. I was ready to do the thing we'd only hinted at for years, which is re-write time, fix the past & become a couple again (thus making things right with the world). I was so, so stupid lol
In October 2018 I flew through LA on a layover on my way to visit family in Atlanta. (He lived in LA). I went to his apartment & we... did... it. We hadn't done... it in about 20 years because I was adamant that I didn't want to cheat on anyone. But since my marriage was unofficially/officially over, well... you know. So then I had all these expectations for what was going to happen next because I'd been sleeping with the same person for at least a decade, & my thoughts about the "meaning of sex," were pretty major. He on the other hand had been single-ish all that time & treated it like just a fuck (which I now realize is a thing lol).
In April, I went back to LA for three weeks because I was having a nervous breakdown (another story for another day) & thought it best to pay for overnights in a Korean Spa (only $30/night) with non-stop steams, & soaks & quiet before I lost my shit & someone had to lock me in a padded room. I saw him twice when I was there, & I think the fact that I was around kind of shook him up because I clearly expected a relationship or at least to discuss the possibility. I expected to be able to stay at his house at least a couple of the nights I was in town but he was like.... um... no. I wasn't self-aware enough to recognize the extent of my hot-messiness (because I'd been isolated in a very dysfunctional world for a while). We were intimate one time on my trip, but it was then that I confirmed what I'd suspected when we did it in October- we were no longer sexually compatible. We were new people trying to fulfill an old dynamic & it just wasn't fulfilling anymore. But I didn't know how to accept that without somehow blaming myself, so I ignored it (that's ok!) & leaned heavy on the emotional connection (I still love you!). He went hella cold on me. Even though I felt rejected & sad, I didn't blow his phone up or chase him or do any of the shit I used to do to unintentionally stroke his ego & make him feel good about rejecting me (which I guess, would have made him talk to me more). I minded my business, took lots of walks, ate good, soaked good, slept good, made out with a stranger (again another story), tanned good, lost a few pounds & acquired a glow. He happened to text me right before I was supposed to fly home & we went for one last walk, where we had a small argument that erupted into a big deal, & he stormed out & left me sitting by myself in a bar. He lived in the apartment building above the bar so I calmly went to his apartment & was like -hey, can we finish our conversation? But I wasn't crying or upset like I'd normally be. He let me in his place & gave me the silent treatment while packing an overnight bag (made a big show of putting in condoms) & went to leave. I remember saying, dude, do NOT leave your apartment, what the hell, I'll leave, & we both scrambled for the door trying to be the first to walk away from each other. I haven't seen him since & we've only talked a few times. Neither of us called the other on our 40th birthdays (we don't miss birthdays, especially not big ones), which were a month apart earlier this year.
The last night I saw him, I pulled a tarot spread before we met up to see what would happen & the card in the outcome position was the Three of Wands. I understood he was going to turn his back on me but after today's post I realize why he had to. For us, it's both scenarios I described above. I wanted to flaunt my healing (because I secretly wanted him to care), but he only likes me when he can reject me & make me boost his ego by chasing him. Also (& this has been the hardest for me to accept), he doesn't wand (want) me anymore. (& truthfully I don't want him either, but I miss the me I was when I did want him, if that makes sense??) Our relationship is a dead thing in the water & he was honest enough with himself not to wade in & pretend it could be salvaged. But I was not able to be honest with myself at the time (which made me the dead thing waving from the water).
Where I once was blind (behind), now I see (sea).
Gotta move right (or get left).
Either way, it's a new day.
What's y'alls Eight of Cups /Three of Wands?
all of us.