When I was younger, I made crazy resolutions every time the sparkly ball dropped: giving up every vice from chocolate to profanity and failing by MLK Day…just like everyone else in the fucking world. 

Then for the past few years, my husband and I would declare January as Detox Month: No booze, no sugar, no animal products for 31 days. Come February 1st, we’d be eating through the walls of every Indian house in town. This year, I’m not doing any of that except 31 days of no booze. I don’t want the holiday cocktail routine to follow me into the new year and I’d sure like for my pants to fit better.  But I’m not taking the start of 2017 as a false cue to overhaul my life. I do that regularly, as needed. I’m like an old car. I’m always in need of tuning–not just once a year.

Instead, I’m using it to reflect a bit on what I experienced in 2016. Unfortunately, I didn’t keep a very good journal last year so I don’t have a clear sense of all that happened for me in this very intense past year. I’m trying to turn that around. But in the meantime, I have Tarot to help.

Dear Tarot: What was the theme of 2016 for me?

                   Woo hoo!

I didn’t get on a pole in 2016. In fact, I’ve never gotten on a pole. I’m a giant klutz-ass and would break my face. But one thing I learned from the dancers at this photoshoot was that dancers are constantly practicing their craft. Pole dancing takes dedication. For me, writing and yoga were my pole dancing. I didn’t write as many blog posts because I was working on my novel. I didn’t go to as many shows because I was going to yoga classes. Finding balance and discipline in what I do. In this picture, there’s also the exciting reveal. I sure did that with Tarot for One which I flashed all over the country like beautiful Sybelle flashes that red top in this picture.

Okay, Page of Wands. I’ll take it.

Dear Tarot: Where did I succeed in 2016? 

           5 of Swords

The 5 of Swords, for me, indicates a walking away. It’s not an easy card. As you can see, the guy in it is still obsessing about what’s behind him, yet he’s still taking what he’s got and walking away, even if it’s not perfect. I made the painful decision to leave my Coven after nine beautiful years. I really do feel like this guy. I keep looking over my shoulder and thinking, “Have they got this? Did I leave them with enough to work with? Should I stick around even a bit longer and help a little more?” No. At some point, you’ve got to just walk away and hope no one loses an arm in the process.

Okay, Tarot: Where did I fail in 2016?

The Four of Pentacles: The Miser Card. Yeah, I didn’t save as much money as I’d like. It wasn’t spending frivolously, but promotion costs money. We can only hope it pays us back in the long run. But I think it’s more than just money. The miser is about conserving personal resources. Our money isn’t the only resource we have. Our time and personal energy is every bit as valuable. I wasn’t great at conserving either of the latter two. I’ve never been. I work too much. I travel a lot. I love both, so it’s not a personal hardship. It does wear on my emotional stability after a while. Something to fix in 2017.

Now, Tarot: What’s the great focus for 2017? 

Because I identify as female, when I receive a King, it’s a sign to do something that’s not natural or comfortable for me. A Queen of Swords might mean, “Write another book on Tarot or start a new Coven” because both of those maniacal things are what I’ve done before. The King of Swords might be, “Get an agent for your weird, weird novel” or “Buy a home and stop throwing away money on rent.” The King and Queen of Swords both mean going after big things with absolute determination, keeping fears in the backseat. But depending on how you identify gender-wise, one may mean doing what you know and the other might mean doing something new and scary. 2017 is a new and scary year for me, apparently.

Finally, Happy New Year to all of you! If you’re in Detroit, the Twin Cities, or Atlanta, come and join me!