With the start of the new year, and because I’ve never really done a Look at the Year kind of Tarot Spread, I decided to give it a try.
I utilized the Wheels of Your Life Spread from Tarot Spreads: Layouts & Techniques to Empower Your Readings by Barbara Moore. It’s a 15 card spread which felt sufficiently big enough to encompass a year of life at the very least (if not a tad beyond).
I also decided to use the new Everyday Witch Tarot deck I’d gotten not too long ago. I haven’t done a Get to Know Your Tools post about it – yet. However, as a short version before we dive into the spread for this, I will quote something I shared with my friends about a month ago:
“So, with most all my decks, I like to start with the “how’re we going to get along?” question, and I’m not sure what to make of the Witches’ deck’s reply. I got the Seven of Cups, Strength, and Two of Wands.
Which feels less like how we’re going to get along and more like the deck decided to skip the introduction, walked into my kitchen and poured itself tea and then went and gave me advice.”
And let’s be fair, that’s quite the answer to my question either way.
For anyone who read Inaction is the Action to Take. This layout is going to look similar, but due to how it’s read, a little different. For anyone wanting to skip the Conclusion, you got some scrolling to do, but it’s big and bold and hard to miss.
Key: [Location] – [Card]: [Card facts]
1 – The Tower: Things go sideways – and during the time that they do so it’s really difficult to see any part of it as being positive. But the chaos and destruction of the Tower card is more often than not a means to clear away something to make room for something better. Even in the art on this card the Witch isn’t put off. She’s got a crooked grin, and by the shiny wand in her hand has likely blown the tower away on purpose.
The Tower’s not a fun card while you’re in the midst of it, but it’s important to keep your chin up and keep walking forward, things will improve.
2 – The Hierophant: The teacher, the guide – the Hierophant is the guide to teach us the sacred, the bridge between the mundane and the shape of our personal truth. It may be reference to an actual teacher, a poke to remind you to look inward at your own wisdom, or a nudge to step back on the path of your personal truth.
3 – Ace of Swords: New Ideas, new beginnings, new clarity. The Ace of Swords is that flash of insight that seems to change everything. It’s the idea you didn’t know you could have during a time when you’re feeling particularly mired and stuck. This is the card that leaps out and says “Don’t let go of that! Don’t dismiss that good bit of advice you didn’t realize was good! Pay attention!”
4 – Death: All things must end, but as nothing ever fully ends a new beginning comes with each end. A glimmer of hope in the cracked doorway is the reminder that change, that endings, can be scary. They can be painful, difficult, and messy. It’s okay to mourn, to ugly cry until you can’t even make anymore tears, like actual death you don’t really have a say in the change, and often little to no warning of its coming, but this too shall pass. A new beginning will come.
5 – The High Priestess: The wise woman. The matriarch. That stern teacher who knows exactly what you were up to because she’s been there. The High Priestess is knowledge internal and external – she knows, she sees, she’s experienced all the things. Getting anything out of her won’t be easy, but she won’t abandoned you either. You’ll bust your ass for the answers, but trust they are there and that the work is worth the end result.
And don’t skimp – she’ll know and then you’re like to get nothing.
6 – Nine of Swords: It is often darkest just before the dawn. This card is a sign of hardship – heartache, loss, frustrations. But it is not a hopeless card. The dawn is breaking in the distance, and her small kitten is trying to comfort her as best it can. Sometimes our woes are worsened in our minds (damnable brain weasels), and this card can often be a reminder to look up and out at the horizon. Things have no ended, and tomorrow dawns.
7 – Strength: Lifting a car is not the kind of strength this card refers to. This is strength of self, this is confidence, this is the will to know you can do the thing. Often this card appears in a reading to remind you that you do have the strength that you’re not sure you have. You will persevere and make it through whatever stands before you.
8 – Two of Swords: This is the decision you don’t want to make. Or you’re simply over thinking it and it’s actually much easier and clearer than you’re willing to believe. The witch in this card put that blindfold on herself – and maybe it’s because no matter the choices provided she doesn’t really want to face any of them.
9 – Two of Pentacles: Life is about balance. Balancing work with home, hobbies with responsibilities, etc. But no matter how well balanced you have things, something is going to come along and garble that up – it’s part of life. The card is a reminder that we don’t always have the best balance ALL the time, and it can also be a reminder to reevaluate your life and make sure you’re not so focused on a single thing that you’re actually woefully imbalanced.
10 – Six of Swords: Sometimes you just have to get gone. These folks are off to anywhere but where they are – they are, none of them, alone in this move. But they’ve all come to understand that where they are is untenable. Sometimes you just can’t fix a thing, be it a relationship, a job, a project, etc. Sometimes you just have to accept your losses, take what you can carry and get gone.
And know that there’s nothing wrong with asking for – or providing – help.
11 – The Empress: The Empress is the personification of growth and possibility. With her on your side you can achieve anything. She is all that is female and powerful, blessing us with abundance, strength and growth. She is Mother Earth and all the possibilities contained therein.
12 – Knight of Pentacles: Sure and steady wins the race, as they say. This knight, like others, is about forward movement. He’s not rushing in blindly – he’s dotted his i’s and crossed his t’s. He’s prepared for just about anything, and certainly ready for whatever the adventure will bring. Even if he’s possibly only going 25mph on his way to get there.
13 – Six of Cups: Random kindness. Small acts that cascade, the reminder to look for the small joys in life. Not everything has to be big to be worthwhile. Sometimes holding a door, or giving someone a small trinket is enough to turn a bleary day into a better one. Innocence dances through this card as well, for the idea is to give without concern of recompense.
14 – Page of Pentacles: The path is wide open before you. The preparations have been done, the ground work is set. It’s time for an adventure – or possibly to act as a guide for someone younger/less experienced as they set out on their adventure. Whatever the case, this card is the gun shot at the track to signal it’s time to get moving!
15 – The Lovers: This card isn’t about love in the way we often think of it. This is about partnership, about being beside someone who fully and completely has your back – and you theirs. This is the unbreakable bond that leaves neither of you alone as you face this world. It symbolizes all things coming together in perfect harmony.
Cards 1, 6, 11 are self: Your sense of self, your self-identity:
In these slots we have The Tower, Nine of Swords, and The Empress. For this set up, the Tower is the Past, the Nine of Swords the present, and The Empress the future.
It certainly fits – I never much care for the Tower card, but in this case, the idea of basically exploding who I was into tiny bits and working to reform it into something better – despite the weight and struggle of it all (reflected in the nine of swords) is certainly good news. Especially with The Empress – the personification of growth and possibility – burning brightly in my future?
Cards 2, 7, 12 are love: Love, romance, and emotional relationships
Here we have The Hierophant in the past, Strength in the present, and the Knight of Pentacles in the future.
Altogether, more than separately, this certainly gives an overview of a strong, rational, and prepared relationship in my life. I learned a lot in the past, making some hard choices that turned out for the better, and had the Strength to accept them and be stronger as I move into the future. We are, both of us, knights of pentacles, as we will guide and prepare the other on this adventure that is life.
Cards 3, 8, 13 are home: Your physical living space and family
We have the Ace of swords in the past, the two of swords in the present, and the six of cups in the future.
Some lowkey positivity here – nothing major shows up in this set of three – a first so far in our spread. The strongest force is the Ace of Swords making sure we don’t miss those opportunities – and perhaps beckoning that we look back on past endeavors and see what rings truer now. Especially with the two of swords prompting us about a hard choice we face in the present.
With the six of cups shining in the future, I’m unsure of how to take it in this position – given that I already tend to practice random acts of kindness as is. Maybe the future will provide me the means to do it on a grander scale?
Cards 4, 9, 14 are work: Job, career, projects, money
Death looms in the past here, and the two of pentacles sits comfortably in the present, with the impatient Page of Pentacles in the future.
Woof, change. Man, I know change. Change in my job, change in my hobbies, change in my faith. My past is definitively Full of change. Lately too – and referenced a bit in Inaction is the Action to Take – I’ve realized I needed balance. I took on a lot, perhaps too much, and I need to figure out where to pull in and where to push forward.
The Page of Pentacles helps with that. The gun shot’s the signal, and I know what *I* want to do. What *I* want to do, and maybe not necessarily what others want me to do.
Cards 5, 10, 15 are friends and social life: Friends, groups, hobbies, things you do for fun
The High Priestess sits in the past in this group, the Six of swords loitering in the present, and The Lovers in the future.
Having the Lovers as the future in this group is certainly heartening! Knowing that fun times, and hobbies and such will be friends who are LEGIT friends. These people, these times, these things will be authentic and valuable.
Ass was busted to get here because the High Priestess doesn’t except anything less, and it’s possible I’ll very soon have to make a tough choice regarding certain friendships (nothing is harder than having to leave behind a friend, or friends that you thought were good for you).
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 are the past: Past energies, trends, and influences
The Tower, The Hierophant, the Ace of Swords, DEATH, and The High Priestess are all past influences in this spread. They may not be actively shaping the coming year, but they are still impacting it. Old lessons, good or bad, don’t leave us when the new year comes along.
There’s some harsh teachers in that past; Death, the Tower – even The High Priestess doesn’t fuck around. The Hierophant is there to ease the chaos and pain of the Tower and Death, and she’s probably really good pals with the High Priestess.
6, 7, 8, 9, 10 are the present: Current themes, trends, energies, and influences
Nine of Swords, Strength, Two of swords, Two of Pentacles, Six of Swords.
Hardship, frustration, brain weasels, hard choices, possible imbalance, the need to move away from the things that are harming you. /deep sigh/ It’s like being in the midst of a whirlwind of shit I don’t particularly want to deal with.
But there, in the midst, is Strength. Strength of will. Strength of character. Strength to persevere. The only Major Arcana in this set and it has the weight to crush the other cards beneath it. Things may not be easy for a while yet, but *I* am stronger.
11, 12, 13, 14, 15 are the future: Future themes, trends, blessings, and challenges
The Empress. The Knight of Pentacles. The Six of Cups. The Page of Pentacles. The Lovers.
Abundance, possibility, patience, preparation, kindness, charity, wide roads, open adventure, true friends, powerful bonds.
!!! Conclusion !!!
The road behind me was dark and rough – it wasn’t a fun walk at times. I wanted to give in plenty of times. Opting to get back on medication caused benefits and issues (it is EXTREMELY difficult to draw when I’m able to care about myself. Cause myself wants to play video games like ALL the time) and guilt walked along with that. Good things happened, for sure (I got married, yo!), and I’m not sure I would change any of the hard moments or tough choices.
The here and now, this beginning of the year, it’s not going to be easy. Something’s sitting heavy on my mind lately and I can’t seem to pin down what it is. Finding balance has been a bit of a struggle, and I can’t really reach out to anyone because I can’t suss out what’s bugging me to begin to ask for help. It’s very possible there’s a blindfold that I put on because I subconsciously don’t WANT to see what the issue is, but at this point, I’m not sure.
I need to trust I have the strength to deal with whatever it is. I am stronger, stronger than I was ever willing to believe, and while I might be small and quiet – I am almost mighty and fierce.
Despite all this – or likely because of it – the future is bright. It’s full of possibility and adventure, friends and kindness. Whatever else there is to be brought, I certainly cannot complain about what awaits. The trick is to not slack in the process – life comes at you regardless of you being ready or not, and a good future can turn sour if you just decide to sit back and rest upon your heels.
A road can repeat itself and what is a bright and promising horizon can easily turn into a series of Unfortunate Events and Hard Lessons.
I’ve had my fill of both.
So I will keep my lessons learned and march firmly forward. I owe it not just to myself, but to the friends who will be traveling along with me.