I felt rather overwhelmed and befuddled this past week. I’m still trying to get things resolved with regard to a housing situation for my brother-in-law or, rather, I’m waiting for the Department of Social Services to do so. I realized they are a bureaucracy, and as such move at a glacial pace, however I have reached the end of my rope and can no longer sustain the current situation. I am in the process of selling my mother-in-law’s house and once that is accomplished my brother-in-law needs to be gone. I’m trying not to be harsh about the situation but I’ve been doing this for a year and a half with absolutely no relief and have reached the end of my internal resources. It came to a head earlier this week when my brother-in-law’s caseworker asked me to postpone the sale. To say you could have knocked me over with a feather would have been an understatement. This has resulted in a bit of spiraling on my part so I decided I needed to get some clarity.
I decided to try this Major Influences Spread by Nancy Antenucci that I found in 101 Tarot Spreads by 20 Modern Tarot Masters (Volume 1). I like three card spreads because they’re simple enough to not be overwhelming and one can always pull additional cards for further clarification. As you can see in the image above I drew the 10 of Pentacles, 5 of Swords and 6 of Wands reversed from The Haunted House Tarot by Sasha Graham. I do so love when the Tarot gives me such a clear message.
So, in answer to what are the apparent known influences in this situation I drew the 10 of Pentacles. The image in this card so perfectly fits my current situation that it’s unnerving. One of my primary goals or motivations in this entire thing is getting moved back into my house before winter starts. I had originally hoped to be there by Halloween but that is clearly not happening. I’m tentatively hopeful that I will be there by Thanksgiving, but I think it might be more realistic to hope that I can celebrate Thanksgiving in the house, even if I’m not fully moved in yet. So this image of a snow covered house with a happy family card in the foreground exactly expresses my motivations, desires and goals.
This 5 of Swords card is a bit unnerving because the figure in the foreground holding the knife looks like a man dressed in an old-fashioned nurse outfit. He seems to be holding the knife and staring at the heroine of the piece, but it’s difficult to tell his intent. I think this is to remind me that, while I am frustrated with DSS’s seeming lack of action up to this point, I’m not really sure what’s going on behind the scenes. All might not be as it appears to me. I’m sure there is a lot of behind the scenes negotiating and planning, to which I’m not privy, attempting to resolve this situation. And, as a dear friend reminded me during this week, this is nothing personal against me. As far as DSS is concerned, I’m actually rather irrelevant to this process. I’m the caregiver that provides direct services, but how it impacts me is really not their priority. I don’t have to like it but I also should be careful not to take it as a personal attack because then my responses create negative situations that don’t need to occur.
The 6 of Wands reversed reminds me that this isn’t a personal battle or a personal attack. As I mentioned in the previous card, this is more about bureaucracies that are underfunded and understaffed trying to do the best with the resources available to them and make sure it is in the best interest of their clients. I’m not their client so I’m just not their priority. If my need and interests intersect with theirs that’s great. If not, they’re not as cooperative. It isn’t an attack on me. If I can take the sense of personal attack out of it, I might be able to handle things in a calmer and more rational manner. At the same time, I think this card is reminding me not to abandon my needs either. I don’t have to go gently into that good night, and it’s important that I advocate for myself and my needs. I also need to be cautious about acting like Bam Bam Rubble, smashing anything in my way to emerge victorious. Remembering that these representatives of government agencies are not trying to prevent me from achieving my goals and desires, they’re merely trying to ensure my brother in law’s needs are being met as well. No one actually triumphs in this situation; it’s more a case of the best possible outcome.
Overall this reading help me clarify some of the issues that have been bedeviling me this past week. Ultimately I will get moved into my home and this house will be sold. My brother-in-law will be placed in a safe facility that can meet his needs. Both our lives will go forward. I need to be cautious not to let incorrect interpretations and misunderstandings create a hostile and negative relationship with these government agencies because that will not help this process. At the same time it’s perfectly fair for me to say that my needs matter too and I am not a doormat. I have every right to say enough is enough, and they need to do whatever is necessary to ensure that my brother-in-law is placed somewhere once this house is sold. That’s not me being selfish, that’s me looking out for my own health and well-being and survival.