The First Card

I don’t remember how old I was. I do know that I was fairly young. Pre-teen or early teen. And I knew that I had little concept about what a tarot deck was for. My mother had Jane Lyle's The Lovers' Tarot, and it only had the Major Arcana cards in it back then. It was also huge. Anyway, I believe my mother also had an angel oracle deck. In my memory they were both very beautiful.


I didn’t know what I was doing. I knew that you shuffled, you picked cards, you flipped them over, and then you read the book. Super glamorous, right? Well, that’s what I did, and I think the first card that I ever drew was The Lovers. Who knows what it meant to me back then. I also remember looking through the angel deck. Even though this was around the time that I was experimenting with Wicca, reading a lot of Scott Cunningham, and getting in touch with my spiritual side, I am fairly certain that I never touched the cards again after that. Not until I went to college.

One day I was at one of my favorite haunts, a bookstore, with my boyfriend at the time (now husband). I saw this:


And I had to have it. Not because it was tarot, but because it was illustrated by Dave McKean. By that time in my life I was a pretty big fan, thanks to having seen his work on Stephen King’s Dark Tower Series, and several of his collaborations with Neil Gaiman. I bought the deck, and the sad thing is that between the ages of 20, and 27, I can count the number of times I used that deck with just two fingers. It’s not that I didn’t believe in Tarot. On the contrary, I was mostly too scared of how right it was. I didn’t want to ask questions. I didn’t want to know.


A lot has happened in those seven years. A lot has happened in the last three months. I picked up my old first Tarot deck, The Vertigo Tarot, and started to use it regularly. I also picked up quite a few others. I’m not afraid of the answers I’ll get anymore. How and why that is - well, it’s really a story for another time.

But why did I pick the cards up again? I don’t know that this is a very good answer, but the truth is...something told me to. I am compelled to look for guidance, to study tarot, to help others find their own truths, and to grow as a person through this particular medium. If you have ever felt inexplicably possessed to go through with something, to follow a particular career path, or a hobby, then you know what I have felt these past few months. I’ve told several people that it’s like standing on a skateboard, and having someone push you from behind so that you just effortlessly glide forward down the sidewalk.

I know who is pushing (my guides), and I know the skateboard I am standing on (intuitive development), and to an extent I even know what my destination is. However, the most important part of this analogy? I’m just enjoying the ride right now.

Happy Autumnal Equinox!