What happens in a reading?

When we meet we usually begin with light chatter that helps us settle into the feel of the day and interaction before we dive into heavier territory.

I am not a licensed counselor or therapist (always check with your healthcare provider if you have a serious physical or mental health concern), but a lot of our rhythms of talk will fall into similar patterns.

You will bring a question (or a basket of wordless feelings that we will form into a question or direction of inquiry together), and I will listen for the elements that will indicate the best spread(s) to address the current need.

A spread is the layout of cards that determines which card represents which part of an answer.

For example, a three-card spread may name:

Situation – Decision – Task

I may show you the art book I use to collect my spreads, and we can discuss what you think will align best with your purposes, or you can leave it to me and my experience to choose.

In the questionnaire you are offered when you book your reading, you will be asked what sort of art or style you prefer, and I will bring a deck that is us aligned with your choices (I have a variety of decks, ranging from fantasy art to portraits drawn in colored pencil).

You can even specify if you prefer human or animal figures, for example, and if you need a deck that is (visually) more gentle than traditional decks.

I can offer no guarantees about the gentleness of the message, but I will always convey what I see with gentleness and respect.

Finally, we are settled, the first question is clarified, and I shuffle the cards. If you want, you can cut the deck — there’s no prohibition against you touching the cards. {When we’re not face-to-face there are other options we can discuss for your “interaction” with the deck.} Then I lay down the cards in the chosen pattern.

At this point I describe the symbolism represented in each card, and we relate it to the card’s position in the spread. Sometimes there is a confluence of cards, where they naturally work together to add depth to the meaning or interpretation.

A case where the whole can be greater than the sum of its parts.

You are welcome to ask questions at any time, or draw your own conclusions. Ultimately this is your time, and your questions and purposes that we are exploring. However I can help with this is what I am here for.

Many spreads include a “what’s next” or “to do” item to help the querent (that’s the person asking the question) to move from the area of thought or theory and into action.

When we finish going through a spread, or your time is up (I set a timer so we both stay aware, including a 5-minute bell so we know when to wrap up), I suggest you may take a picture of the cards if you want, or offer to send you one from my phone.

And that’s it.

We share a polite good-bye (return our dishes if we met in a coffee shop or cafe), and maybe talk about when or whether you want to continue the work or have another session or follow-up in two weeks or a month.

Then you leave with a lot to think about.

People get the most benefit out of each session if they journal about it soon after (or even during the reading), holding on to key elements that resonated.

Questions I didn’t answer? Feel free to contact me.