Recurring Dreams


I get asked about recurring dreams all the time. I even used to struggle with them myself. But the funny thing about recurring dreams, or dreams in general, is that they are just metaphorical manifestations of our greatest fears and hopes.

One reader wrote to me recently that she often dreamt of a “frail, depressed girl” who was constantly out of reach. She kept trying to grab and help her, but the girl kept slipping away. And every time she woke up, she was frightened.

I asked her a few questions about her upbringing, and she had faced some neglect in her life. I asked her if she knew how to care for herself and give herself the attention she deserved, and she said not really. Then I asked her if the little girl in the dream could be her, and she didn’t know how to respond.

After she came to the realization that she so desperately wanted to save herself, but did’t know how, she started a healing process. You see, our dreams force our unconsciousness into light. It is in a cryptic, somewhat creepy manner, but it’s enough to grab our attention and make us curious.

The Moon illustrates fears and anxieties coming up from our subconscious. Sometimes we don’t know what is buried there, nor are we willing to uncover it. But let me tell you, if it wants to be heard, it will be.

In this instance you must embody the Fool. You must embark on this journey to find the pain that is plaguing you. And if it is so unconscious that you need help to discover what it is, I am always only an email away.

Get dreaming, and stay witchy ( *)

Tales From My Bedroom Floor: Volume 5, The Victim

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Volume 5 is now up on My Trending Stories! Go read here:  https://mytrendingstories.com/article/tales-from-my-bedroom-floor-volume-5-the-victim/

 

In this six part series, I go through times that were pivotal in collecting my personal and detrimental belief system, all while crying on my bedroom floor.

And if you like my writing so far, please share and comment. I’m working on a new and long term project and would really like some feedback on my writing style. Thanks ya’ll and stay witchy ( *)

Where Are You In Your Journey: Episode 1

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I’m SO EXCITED to bring the first ever podcast! Here you’ll meet Hannah Fuller, who shares her story about body image, competition, and carving out an identity in an image-driven industry.

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http://www.itsafullerlife.com

Please enjoy here, on Soundcloud through Shawn Engel, and on iTunes

The Green Eyed Monster


Jealousy is tricky. It will pop up when you least expect it, and proceed to torture and consume you. It becomes an obsession.

It is pretty clear, however, that jealousy is just another by-product of insecurity. The “you aren’t good enough” track plays over and over in your head and so you compare yourself to everyone that seems to have what you “don’t.”

Indicated by the reversed position of the Knight of Cups, jealousy comes from acting with emotion over logic, and what is more emotionally controlled than insecurity? This is not a mindful exercise, but rather a learned response to beliefs we have collected throughout our early lives. It has now become a quick draw for whenever that icky insecurity sets in, because it is easier to project outwardly than focus internally.

Now, aside from the obvious problems with this, we also have to understand that the stories that we make up about the people we are jealous of are usually completely untrue. What we see at face value, on Instagram, on Facebook, those are just the versions of us we want people to see. So why wouldn’t that be true of the target of your jealousy?

But lets get a little more specific here and look at jealousy in relationships. Whether you are the jealous one or your partner is, neither is particularly fun to be. While one is running around cherry picking things to get upset about, the other is generally the target of distrust. And you can see here how that will inevitably crumble a union.

Jealousy can be an armor of protection against getting hurt by your partner. Causing a fight over suspicion is easier to do than to trust them. Trust is scary. And when you trust someone who betrays you, it can cause extreme emotional damage.

The Seven of Swords usually indicates betrayal. But what is extremely important to understand is to not let past betrayals get in the way of a new relationship. While you are now wiser than before, and are able to pick up red flags when necessary, you must learn to open your heart fully and trust the other person because you trust YOURSELF. Remember, you can’t paint all the flags red because you are scared. Sometimes a flag is just a flag.

So, bottom line, at the root of all of this jealousy lies insecurity. If this is something you struggle with, I invite you to sit down and make a list. I want you to write down everything that you are in one column, and everything that you are not in another column. I want you to write as close to fifty in each column as you can. And I think you’ll see, as you get further down the list, some of the old beliefs start to get stripped away, and you have to rely on your authentic self for the answers. Stay secure and stay witchy ( *)

Trauma Resolution

 

After rape, feeling safe isn’t easy to come by.

And through some interesting research and my favorite podcast, an idea was brought to my attention. You feel unsafe for surface reasons that are obvious, but also a deeper biological reason that isn’t so: you haven’t finished your fight or flight response, and so discomfort is an underlying feeling in similar situations. And this covers all forms of trauma.

The Tower can symbolize trauma. A card of disaster and upheaval, this card from the outside looks like doom. However, like all things in the tarot, and all things in life, there is ALWAYS a way to move through.

Trauma stores in your body like a parasite. And your fight or flight responses, your mammalian brain, always tries to rectify that. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I personally have slept with many a drunk stranger trying to correct what I thought I did wrong. And I always woke up feeling guilty because I couldn’t remember if the choice was mine or not. I was trying to rectify a sexual trauma with promiscuity.

In my case, my trauma (having happened while I was near to black out drunk) lives in my body and tries to mirror my traumatic situation in order to complete its fight or flight response. That means that, when out partying when I was not getting help, I would go up to strangers and flirt, using my mammalian brain to recreate a similar situation so I can fully act out my fight or flight, quenching the animalistic need to do so.

It’s almost like when you reboot a computer, but an application is still running so it won’t let you do so. That application is still trying to finish its job, but can’t move forward because you’re trying to shut everything down. By ignoring the application, you’re actually doing harm to the system and slowing down the progress, aka, your end goal.

What needs to happen, on the other hand, is addressing the situation head on. If you have lived through any kind of trauma (and that could look like anything, be it a divorce, rape, death, or something that isn’t textbook traumatic but simply made an impression on you) there needs to be an acceptance of what happened before you can move through it.

But what if you don’t know if you have trauma? What if something is holding you back underneath the surface but you don’t even realize it’s there? You don’t even realize it’s traumatic? Well I suggest this first: if you are engaging in unhealthy behaviors consistently, I ask you to dissect the context. When do you reach for that drink? When do you shop to numb out? When do you clean excessively? When you get curious about your habits, you will embark on a new mystery: solving the case of the root and not the symptom.

This is where you are guided by The Star. This is a card of transformation and healing, a reminder that you will always have the universe surround you and that you will never be alone in this world. Use this as your guide through the pain and into a lighter and brighter future.

Get curious. Address your feelings. Do not be afraid to indulge in your sadness, pain, or fear. They exist because you are human and you are a survivor. But in order to heal and move through, in order to rectify your trauma, you must ask the tough questions and accept the truth you find. Find your truth and stay witchy ( *)

 

How to be Wrong with Grace

 

Being wrong is just the worst, isn’t it?

The Five of Wands signifies conflict that is far from constructive. Everyone is shouting and no one is listening, so nothing gets accomplished. All the feelings are valid, but everyone is too self absorbed and focused on being “right.”

But what is the point of being right if nothing gets resolved? And what if, by some stroke of misfortune, you’re actually wrong for once?

Well it’s surely a hard pill to swallow, and as a struggling perfectionist, I never want to be wrong. But we are all human, and sometimes it just happens. Whether it be at work, at home, in a relationship, or with a friend, our human interactions leave a lot of room for hurt feelings. However, you can be wrong the right way.

If someone comes to you to address a problem they have with you, opening your ears and heart is the right way to receive the conversation. Reaching for combat to prove that you were right will get you nowhere; it almost always ends in a stalemate.

This is where you reach for Temperance. Balance, patience, and harmony will be your guide. You may not agree with everything the person is saying, and you have every right to stand up for yourself, but remember that being receptive to another persons feelings will get you much farther than shutting them down. Everyone wants to be heard, and an apology wouldn’t hurt either.

So next time conflict arises, don’t fuel the fire. Being right isn’t that important. Strong relationships and showing up as best you can means way more in the long run. Stay compassionate, and stay witchy ( *)

 

When Compromise Becomes Compromising

There must be a theme of compromise in relationships; it is perfectly necessary when two people learn how to work together while being emotionally invested in each other. But what happens when there is only one person sacrificing? How can you measure who brings what to the table?

First and foremost, I think I should clarify that one shouldn’t get too wrapped up in a 50/ 50 split at all times. Sometimes one person will sacrifice more for the other, and then it will switch up. The important part is that down the line of the relationship, you both know you will have each other’s backs when needed.

But where we can get into trouble, is when one person is constantly catching the other, and then justifying it with “unconditional love.”

This is where we see the Two of Swords. A message that you may be blindfolded to the compromise. That you are giving more than your partner would for you.

You see, love is conditional. There should be conditions for every thing in life. This is how we protect ourselves. And to jump into a love with no boundaries to become a literal love servant, you will get into immense trouble. This is obviously a case for the extreme, but you must learn when you are giving up too much of yourself for someone who will not respect your input.

The Three of Cups reversed will indicate three’s a crowd, which in this case signifies an insecurity you are making up for or catering to. When it is clear that your partner will not hold you up when you are down, or what’s worse, will make it seem like he/ she will without really doing anything, and you will constantly give 100 %, you have to ask yourself: what am I afraid of?

 

More often than not, the extent to which you will compromise yourself and your feelings for your partner runs parallel with the fear attached to losing them. If I let them borrow money, they’ll know how much I love them. If I miss work to spend all day with them, they’ll know how much I love them. If I buy them gifts I can’t afford, they’ll know how much I love them.

These are examples of extending yourself to where not only can you not reach high enough to hold up your partner, but you’ve lost your footing to keep yourself grounded. Compromise in relationships is healthy, but there needs to be a balance. Take care of yourself first, and stay witchy ( *)

Love and Heartbreak are Acts of Self Trust

 

I’ve talked about these topics at length, as well as of my favorite book, Women Who Run With the Wolves. In this book, Clarissa Pinkola Estes talks about the cycle of love in a new, and yet, ancient way that speaks very clearly to me.

In this book she dissects old fables and explains how they inspire the Wild Woman Identity. In one in particular, entitled the Skeleton Woman, she describes the Life/ Death/ Life cycle and how you need to die in order to be reborn.

In love, from what I’ve come to understand, is that a broken heart is your death cycle. But rather than being a tragic occurrence, it is more of an opportunity. Much like the Death card suggests, it is the gift of rebirth, rather than the mourning of a loss. When you “die,” you are given a low platform, a new angle from which to learn. And once you do, it is then that you are allowed to live again.

Once you reach this new ability of living, you are given a new age of innocence and vulnerability. This is not to be confused with ignorance. Your death cycle has taught you well, and you know now more than you did before. This new innocence, on the other hand, is an act in self trust. Because your knowledge is more advanced, richer, you are able to trust yourself to move through a new relationship in a way that is wiser.

Further, when you live again, you will come across more opportunities to die and reincarnate. There is not just one cycle. In life and love you are constantly learning. And whether it is with the same lover or someone new, if you are not constantly moving through Life/ Death/ Life, you are not living at all.

Life includes pain. But it is what we do with this pain, how we grow with this pain, how we mold it to strengthen us, that creates the new life and all of the blessings it has in store for us. To sit quietly in bliss does not breed knowledge. To focus on pain does not help us grow. We need constant and fluid movement to live fully and experience everything with a wise knowing that this is how we reach the Wild Woman within us. Get moving and stay witchy ( *)

Why Can’t You See the Love When it’s Staring You in the Face?

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I remember, as a child, feeling quite alone and isolated. I remember a deep, unquenchable thirst for love that I thought I wasn’t getting. I convinced myself that I was not receiving love, and was therefore unworthy of it. I found comfort and solace in pain.

But why? My parents loved me. I had a little sister who has only grown closer to me. I always had friends. Why was it that I chose to see the world from a negative angle?

The truth is, when you have such a deep set belief that you are undeserving or unworthy of something, you are going to take every opportunity to prove your point to yourself. This is where your perfectionism steps in. You aren’t allowed to be wrong, so your perfectionism will prove your point to you over and over again, even when it is detrimental and untrue. Much like the Orange Car Effect, your perfectionism will cherry pick evidence to prove just how unworthy you are. It is just doing it’s job. And not only is this very clearly damaging, but it is perpetual. Only you can choose to stop and see the love.

But how do you break this cycle? How do you go from one day proving to yourself that you are alone and nobody loves you to becoming a confident powerhouse? Well it takes time, imperfectly, one day at a time. It is a slow process, but it starts internally. That’s the beautiful thing, because you’re holding yourself accountable.

Once you decide to make this shift from self destruction to appreciating yourself, the Orange Car Effect shifts into this new gear, where you’re getting little gems of appreciation from outside sources. And not to count on them as validation, though you may need that at first, they just show up organically because you are starting to heal.

So why can’t you see the love when it’s staring you in the face? It’s because you don’t want to. You aren’t ready yet. But that’s ok, my friend. It is out there waiting for you to embrace it. Stay witchy ( *)

Sexual Trauma and Relationships

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The Eight of Swords depicts a feeling of powerlessness, and nothing will make a person feel more powerless than sexual trauma. It’s an indescribable feeling of emptiness from abuse, but it is not the way one has to feel forever.

When one holds sexual trauma in their body, they will react to triggers. I’ve written about triggers before, but when you have been abused in a way that involves sex, intimacy with a partner is going to be a bit of a struggle. It can look like an unquenchable thirst, a sheer reluctance, or an all together abstinence. And with one of the definitive qualities of a sexual relationship versus a friendship being, well, sex, that can prove to be a bit of an adjustment.

First and foremost, anyone who has been sexually assaulted must seek out help and support however and whenever they can. It is a complete must and the avoidance of it will show up in very compromising ways. Mine showed up as codependency, as you’ve read in my previous post. But what if you’ve sought out the help, have been doing the work, and you get triggered during sex with your partner? What then?

Well this may come as a no-brainer to most of you, but it certainly wasn’t to me; in that very moment when you are triggered, you must stop whatever sexual act and breathe. You need to step away from the situation and take a minute to give yourself some time. Your feelings are perfectly valid and you need to re-calibrate yourself with the reality that you are in now. And as soon as you’ve given yourself some time to get to a calm state, you must have a conversation with your partner.

Whether they know about your trauma or not, whether you want them to or not, you need to set a boundary. Maybe the act was too hard, too fast, maybe he/ she said something that acted as a trigger, whatever the case may be, you need to express that you did not like what happened and that it is not allowed to happen again. This will be an act in self protection and self respect, and I can think of no where more deserving to be respected than in the bedroom. This is a place of safety and intimacy, and though you were wronged and abused in the past, you have always deserved that.

Now you don’t have to completely spill your heart out and tell your whole story, but if you want to then you should. Your partner should respect your wishes and listen to your boundaries, and if it becomes an argument, I suggest finding another partner. Your body is sacred, and it took me a long time to figure that out.

You do not owe anyone sex. And after a sexual assault, you’re going to need some time to work back into a feeling of safe intimacy. It is a confusing process, but creating sexual boundaries and honoring what you need from your partner will help you to get back to a safe place. 

It is imperative that you feel comfortable with sex. Sex is a beautiful and natural act, and with someone you love can be completely fulfilling. And wherever you are in your recovery, you will find that unless you feel comfortable, it should not exist in the equation. Take care of your beautiful bodies and stay witchy  ( *)