Sunday, July 02, 2006

Accepting the Shadow Side

It's been a long time since I've posted anything here. I'm not sure why that is. I'd intended to post a random card fairly regularly and comment on it, but perhaps re-activating the blog now is the first step. One thing that has been interesting me, and of which I've been reminded again and again recently, is the importance of accepting the shadow-side of each neter represented in the cards. When Anne-Marie posted her beautiful Patience card this week, one of the readings she did suggested she create a card for her Impatience too.

There was a time when I wasn't too keen on those shadow-side cards, and didn't understand why we should make them (though, of course many of them just presented to me, and I made them anyway, reluctant as I was), and certainly didn't welcome them if they presented in a reading, or when I drew a card to be my neter for the day. But I gained a new perspective on this a few months ago, and recently found the email I'd sent to Anne-Marie describing how it happened, so thought I'd share the story (in brief) here:

I'd been going through a difficult and protracted series of visits to my solicitor to complete the process of legal separation after my 20-year marriage ended. Each visit to the solicitor saw me leaving the office in tears. Often, one of my sisters or a friend would be available to support me, but in September last year I was facing one of the most difficult visits, and for whatever reason, I was going alone, and telling myself to be a grown-up about it, but I was still very anxious about it, and about my future. The night before the meeting, I drew four cards. They were

Fun and Laughter.... Yes, I thought, this card reminded me that even when I'm doing something serious and important, if I can employ my sense of humour, things will feel better. This card gave me comfort

My Protected Inner Child Yes, I knew that my inner child is protected and looked after, no matter what happens, and this card gave me comfort.

The Abundant Universe card. Yes, I know that the Universe / God gives and gives, and that there is always plenty, and that what I need will be available to me, if I trust. This card gave me comfort and support.

And then.... A card that until that time, I had never been able to quite name properly, but the image is of a vulnerable woman, uncomfortable and half-naked witha huge rampaging bull charging right at her, and I thought "Oh, no, that's just what I don't need, to feel like that...

Why did I get that card?..." and so on, and then I said, well, I'll just sit with a while, and gradually, as I sat, I realised that the card didn't make me feel like that. I already felt like that to some extent (who am I kidding? ... To a large extent!), and the card was saying I could admit to myself that I felt like that, and that the other cards would support me in feeling like that... so then it felt ok to see this card.

Accepting this, realising the value of seeing and acknowledging one of my Shadow selves was so important. Instead of pretending to be strong, bolstered with my Warrior-self or my Brave and Fearless self, here I was admitting to feeling vulnerable, and I slept soundly that night, prepared calmly for the meeting when I woke. I had my four cards laid out on the table, and all four supported me... and then the really wonderful thing happened. A friend sent a text message, and I replied asking her to send me good thoughts. She sent back "tons and tons", and I straight away felt stronger like the energy she was sending literally strengthened me. So I wrote a brief message requesting good strong thoughts at the time of my meeting and sent it off to sisters, cousins, and friends of the heart 18 or 20 women, and they all got the message, and they all were with me when I went to that meeting, and for the first time, I sat in that office, calm, self-possessed, mentally functioning, able to follow what was said, ask intelligent questions. I was strong, I was not sentimental, and within 30 minutes, the meeting was completed. I had been through a very difficult situation and came out SMILING!


Yes, it is a long story, and convoluted, but it meant so much to me to realise that accepting the shadow-side represented in that card - the fearful, overwhelmed, vulnerable part of me - was what enabled me to reach out and ask for the help that so many people were just waiting to send me. If I'd only welcomed the "positive cards" I would have been saying "I'm fine. I don't need to ask for help".

So now, I find I can be more accepting of the "negative" sides, realising they aren't Bad, or something to try to get rid of, but to acknowledge, accept and allow to take their place within the great, complex mixture of pieces that make up the Being that is Me. Allowing them their place makes for balance, and since they are there anyway, naming and acknowledging them just stops them from becoming some huge unspoken presence in my life.

If, in a reading, you find yourself rejecting the card that presents as negative, maybe it will help to say Ok, if that was the way I felt, what would I need to do? and do it.


  • What a wonderful story to show the importance of Shadow cards - thank you

    By Blogger lalheg, at 2:41 AM  

  • What a power-filled, healing thought - to own your shadow-side. Thank you.

    By Blogger Terri /Tinker, at 3:02 PM  

  • Here's to feeling the power generated by facing our shadows. Bravo!

    Thanks, too, for taking a stroll along Nairn Avenue with me and for leaving your comment. I know the street wasn't named after anyone I know, but my research has never been able to pin down the exact identity of the Nairn who "earned" the honour.

    By Blogger Wenda, at 8:57 PM  

  • This is fascinating -- I've never heard of Shadow cards. Can you explain them to me? Anything like Tarot (which I know very little about)? But I love the illustrations!

    By Blogger pepektheassassin, at 8:08 PM  

  • Thank you.

    The little girl in tthe left corner, down , is Didi, but I geuss you understood that.

    I am totaly new in this world, but i grabbed me.

    I think those tele classes are great, omly I live in the netherlands, so wrong time.

    And my spouse doesn;t fancy my hobbies I had and have, don't know why, so sometimes

    I have to miss things that needs paying for, like books and newsletters. We haven't an
    internet payment. At home I just buy my supplies if I need something, but this is zip.

    So be it.
    I love the protected inner child one.
    Shadow cards are cards with our darker thoughts, isn't it?

    And whet I have tolearn are readings when I have enough cards, never done that.

    Love and hugs,


    GreenishLady wrote:

    Rita, Your cards are wonderful. I like all four, but am really most struck by your Source card and the love shining out of this one for Didi. Beautiful. Welcome to the world of SoulCollage Blogging! Great to see more people joining in here.


    By Blogger Rita B. Fox, at 1:57 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home