I have gone through a religious and spiritual journey in my life so far, and my beliefs are always evolving. I enjoy reading about different religions, taking all that I’ve learned and combining it with my own experience to form a personal belief system. I don’t believe that I have to follow any one particular religion, because I feel that I would be closing myself off to so many possibilities.
A couple years ago my mother-in-law gave me a deck of Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards- basically they are tarot cards with a Goddess theme. There are goddesses from many cultures and religions across the world, there to guide the lost when it comes to any open-ended question. Supposedly they work best during a full moon, and so I regularly bring them out when I notice that the moon is full. They are surprisingly accurate considering the possibility of responses… there are so many cards that would not be relevant for many questions but 95% of the time the cards pulled answer the questions well.
We had some friends over this evening and when they took off, Luke pointed through the skylights and showed me the gorgeous full moon. With all these fears and questions running through my head, I ran to the bedroom and grabbed the cards. I answered a couple of Luke’s questions before he got bored and left to play video games, then asked my own open-ended question… how can I be a good mother?
For most questions, I pull three cards representing past, present, and future. Here is what I got for my question, and my interpretations…
- PAST: Kuan Yin, Compassion
- “Release judgements about yourself and others, and focus on the love and light that is within everyone.”
- I have mentioned before that I can be quite selfish, but I have another flaw that I’ve kicked for the most part… that’s being judgmental. I used to be very self-conscious, and would judge others as a defense mechanism. As I have gained actual self-confidence and world awareness, I have opened my eyes to the fact that everybody comes from somewhere, everyone has a story.You can’t judge a person when you see them for the first time, or even when you’ve known them for a while and they are acting up, because you don’t know the real cause of their behavior. Most of the time it’s not you, so there’s no reason to defend yourself- that can even make things worse. The best course of action is to treat people with compassion and respect, and maybe they (and you) will feel better. Everyone has some goodness inside themselves, even when they are driving you crazy. And even when you are in a self-loathing mood, you may be better off treating yourself with the kindness you would give your BFF.
I think this concept is the definition of maturity… being understanding and respectful of yourself and others even in the face of adversity. Learning this lesson helped make me the person I am today… someone loving and lovable in my own way, and hopefully prepared for the journey ahead.
- PRESENT: Kali, Endings and Beginnings
- “The old must be released so that the new can enter.”
- This card signifies that although you may be losing something, you are also gaining much more. Change is just a part of life and I need to stop being afraid of it. It’s time to let my party days go, leave my youth behind, and embrace all the possibilities that lie in my future.I said in my last post that I was afraid that I would resent my life and my child because of the change it brought to my life, but that would not be an issue if I can leave this part of my life in the past. Becoming pregnant will be an ending to this phase of my life… youth, partying, irresponsibility, selfishness… but it will be a beginning as well.
A beginning of a new family, of motherhood, and altruism. Once I let go of the freedom I am losing, I can embrace the joys and love of a family and children that I will be giving and receiving.
- FUTURE: Sekhmet, Be Strong
- “You are stronger than you think you are, and your strength assures a happy outcome.”
- This card really speaks to me, and what it means to be a mother in my future. It says don’t complain, or make yourself out to be a victim. I occasionally have a tendency to play victim, but in this case I am making the decisions and going in with knowledge. I knew in marrying Luke that we would have a family and that my life would change, and that it would happen soon. Complaining won’t help one bit!The more important message of this card is obviously strength, both physical and emotional. The physical is simple… I will need a bit of physical strength and stamina to keep up with my children, carry them around, have energy, and be the kind of mother I desire to be. The emotional strength is more complex.
There is a section in the card descriptions that points out various meanings of the card, and all seem to be relevant to my future as a mother.
- Don’t underestimate yourself – I obviously question myself and my capabilities as a mother… thus this whole “FEARS” category of the blog. Maybe I need a little more confidence that my motherly instincts will kick in!
- Don’t yield to pressure or temptation – I think of this one more in the line of diet… there are always bagels, junk food, cakes, and crappy foods laying around and I regularly feel tempted. I indulge occasionally, and always feel like crap after. That’s not good when I am pregnant or breastfeeding, because if I feel like crap, my baby probably feels like crap too. There will inevitably be a lot of pressure as well when I am pregnant… thank goodness I found a midwife who supports my paleo eating plan and doesn’t ask stupid things like, “Well, where are you going to get your fiber without whole grains?” There will be many people that try to get me to eat things I don’t want or I know are no good, because I have seen it so much… Many people think of pregnancy as an excuse to eat anything you “want” because you are expected to gain a ton of weight anyway.
- Avoid complaining or indulging in negative thinking – I already discussed the complaining, but it would be great to avoid most negative thoughts as well… negative thinking causes stress which is bad for the body and the attitude. If I am thinking negative thoughts, my body won’t be functioning optimally, and after I have given birth, my baby will be able to sense my negative energy and will have it’s own stress. I believe that everything is interconnected, and so if I can personally stay positive, then my energy will have a positive effect on myself and the people around me.
- Engage in weight-training exercises to make your body stronger – doing my best on this one! Like I said before, I firmly believe that physical strength can help a mother do the things she needs to do. This will help with pregnancy, birthing, and motherhood, when I actually have others depending on my strength to take care of them.
In a strange way, pulling a few tarot cards gave me a little confidence that I can be a good mother… as long as I retain my compassionate nature, I let go of my past lifestyle and embrace this new future, and grow the physical and mental/emotional strength I need to care for others.