a reading for a new presidency

some thoughts on the 2021 inauguration

friends, we’ve nearly made it. today is the scheduled inauguration day for joe biden and kamala harris in the united states. and no matter your political leanings (though i imagine that if you’re here, reading the words of a queer disabled witchy feminist who believes that black lives matter, that trans lives are to be protected and celebrated, that white supremacy is at the root of many of these country’s problems, you are likely fairly aligned with my politics), the formal end of donald trump’s presidency is something to celebrate.

i’m not naive. i know that the insurrection at the capitol on january 6th was a terrifying, dangerous moment in our country’s history, and that it represents the darkest, grimmest parts of our nation. i know that things will not magically get better once biden and harris are in the white house. i know that what we call a democracy is inherently broken, that democrats will likely not accomplish as much as so many of us are hoping, that we still need a revolution to get even close to equality. i know that reparations are desperately needed, that our court systems are fucked for at least a generation, that the police hold far too much power, that vaccines are not being distributed quickly enough, that so many are still suffering and underemployed and living paycheck to dwindling paycheck. and i know that anything is possible today, that we are all holding our breath, that the fear and stress and anxiety we have all been carrying for years is not likely to evaporate today.

and yet. i hope that today, in spite of all that has happened and all that may happen, that you can find some moments for hope, for joy, for celebration. i hope you can create ways to connect with the people that you love, that love you. i hope you can remember the spirit of aquarius, and that as we embrace the energy of the star, a bit of healing starts to feel within reach.

writing a new spread for today felt like too much, honestly. but i did want to pull a card or two for all of you, to offer a few words that will hopefully help you feel a little less alone, a little less afraid. with that in mind, i’ve drawn some cards for us as a community, using a self-care spread that i created back in 2019.

you can use this spread for yourself if you like, but i know that some days working with the tarot can simply feel too heavy, too difficult, too complicated. this is a public post, so feel free to share it with anyone you think may need a little bit of insight or support. i hope that this reading helps you find some comfort, feel connected to others, and show yourself some grace today.

where to focus healing: strength. we’ve had to be intensely dialed in, strong and capable, relying on our wits and our wisdom to survive the last few years. and yet this is not a practice that will end tomorrow with the new administration, but rather a way that we have grown and evolved that we should not lose or surrender in the coming months. what have you learned about yourself, your wildness and your capacity for patience, your ability to parse through bullshit and find truth? it’s possible to find healing even in the midst of displaying strength, but it requires intention and purpose, can only happen if we do not push too hard or try to accomplish every single thing at once.

how to recover: knight of wands. knights ask us to consider how we are utilizing our energy, what we are putting our love and inspiration into, what we are investing in. and while there can be such joy and power in giving our all to something we care about, we also need to trust that the places that we have lit sparks can catch and build on their own, without us fussing or obsessing over them. what fires have you already started, and how can you be patient about their growth? you may know how to fan the flames, but is that kind of dedicated and focused effort still necessary? can that fire burn brightly on its own, giving you space to breathe and rest?

what to remember: ten of wands. it’s important to remember that we have all been living in a state of burnout, of exhaustion, of taking on far too much even as we try to pretend that everything is normal. you know that image of the dog surrounded by fire, saying “this is fine?” we’ve all been doing that for a long time. and for my black and POC friends, for my queer friends, for my disabled friends, we’ve probably been doing it for most of our lives. how can you show yourself grace? what heavy burdens have you been carrying, that you could perhaps put down for a time? where might you need help, support, advice?

what to release: six of cups. as humans, we have a tendency to soften things after we move through them, to tell ourselves that it wasn’t really that bad or that it felt worse at the time. but this is just a way to downplay our own trauma, and can delay the healing and repair that is so deeply necessary. as we move forward, release the idea that everything is suddenly going to be rosy and beautiful, that we can go back to the way that things were before. give yourself the kindness of honesty, of owning the ways that you have struggled. there’s no shame in acknowledging how hard things have been, the suffering and anger and loneliness and fear. how can be truthful about what you have endured help you find real healing?

overall, this reading asks us to be grounded and patient, to remember joy, to respect what we have endured, and to give ourselves intentional room for rest and reflection. we have been through a collective trauma, so don’t gaslight yourself or dismiss how hard this has been - we will likely be processing and reflecting on what we have been through for the rest of our lives. how can you be gentle with yourself? how can you remember your strength, acknowledge the passion you still carry, show yourself kindness even as you sit in truth?

be safe today, friends. i’m grateful for you.

images from this post feature cards from the lumina tarot. all photographs by meg jones wall.