Tuesday, September 6, 2016

A Hankering for the 4 of Wands

This September, the Lady of Serpents (on Instagram) is hosting a self-exploration challenge and today's prompt is: "What do I unknowingly carry with me?" I love that question - it's great for identifying hidden influences that need a little illumination!

I shuffled my Fountain Tarot and drew the 4 of Wands.
Four people dance together on a sandy beach by an expanse of water. Four beams of light reach up into the sky, almost like spotlights at a party. These people, whoever they are, are having a very good time together.

As I sat with this card the word that kept coming back to me was, release. The 4 of Wands is a card of completion, of celebration, of letting go of routine (albeit momentarily). This card often represents occasions such as graduation parties, weddings, anniversaries, and can even symbolize much-needed vacations. No matter what event it connects to, the 4 of Wands represents the joy inherent in removing the framework that gives daily life its structure. We all need that from time to time, and we, as human beings, regardless of culture, nationality, or faith, always have.

Just yesterday I was sitting outside with my husband, enjoying the early evening breeze, watching as the sun broke over an invisible horizon to paint the clouds with peachy hues. As we chatted, our conversation turned to a topic that highlighted this concept of release. He spoke of the desire for community - particularly of a web of relation-ship with people he grew up with, of an environment widely conducive to his first language. I spoke of how much I've been missing northern nature - the forests, fresh waters, the aroma of pine needles in the air. We discussed our distinct lack of any sort of community at all where we live currently; we moved here for our jobs more than four years ago and in certain ways still feel a keen sense of isolation.

Looking at the 4 of Wands, I was brought back to my own memories of release-moments: when my mother and step-dad married; a week-long trip to the family home in the northern woods with extended family; time spent at a North Carolina beach house with family and friends. Yes, I thought, I am carrying this with me - a need for celebration, release, with people I know and care about.

As I pondered this, I shuffled my Dat Black Mermaid Man-Lady oracle deck and drew a card. I could see that it was one of the Dreamer cards, which represent the reader's own soul energy.
And when I turned it over I laughed in appreciation at its message:
Family! Indeed, family; kin. The embrace of people with whom deep bonds are shared.

My family is scattered around the globe. Some are in Michigan, some in Utah. Some are on the East Coast, and some are in Tennessee. Some are in Alaska. Some are in England, and some are in New Zealand. Some are in Saudi Arabia. With so many of us spread out so far, congregating becomes a challenge, and thus happens infrequently, or not at all. Cousins grow up and seek their own adventures. They establish their families in new places. It is good, in its way, but at times bittersweet, too.

My husband and I were planning a grand getaway at the end of September, just the two of us. We kept putting off planning, and I started to sense that there was a reason - a certain "something" - that was silently staying the process. I waited to see what it might be.

We finally decided not to go anywhere at all. Rather, we would spend the time at home-base, and venture out on day trips, go on dates, and enjoy some time together in that manner. My mother was still planning to come to town to look after the kids. And then my sister let us know that she'd be descending upon our household as well, flying in from the Middle East to spend a month or more with us during her own down time. My mother, my sister, my husband, our kids. All under one roof.

By ultimately choosing to stay put, we unwittingly created a space for the 4 of Wands to manifest.


  1. I love how this card manifested in your life! Beautiful beautiful beautiful. Thank you for sharing this story, Olivia!