One of the most common questions a tarot reader will hear is “will s/he come back?” It seems that there is never a shortage of folks who are looking to reconnect with their ex.
While it’s natural to seek guidance after a heartbreak, obsessing over the return of an ex is neither empowering nor healing. Here’s why: you’re putting your future on hold waiting around for the imminent (and oftentimes unlikely) return of another person, something you have no control over. Instead of looking at what you can do to heal or move on, the “will s/he come back” question puts you in the position of waiting for your future (or in this case, your past) to “happen to you.”
This leads to a whole lot of waiting around, hoping for the outcome you want, especially if the cards show a favorable future.
But it can also lead to frustration when the cards don’t tell you what you want to hear. For the record, the most abusive clients I have ever worked with are the ones that get told that the ex will not return. I cannot count how many times seekers have gotten angry and sent nasty emails or posted poor reviews….even when I was right. When you prick the illusion, they will go from reader to reader to reader to get the answer they want, another unhealthy behavior.
Other questions that generally don’t lead to productive, helpful answers:
- Does s/he love me?
- How does s/he feel about me?
- Are they having sex with someone else?
- Will they leave x for me?
- Did they cheat on me?
- Is my ex in a relationship?
Some of these questions are prying into things that are not your concern (who s/he is having sex with is none of your business). And, once again, it assumes that your future is going to “happen to you” once that ex comes to their senses. There’s a better way to ask questions about a former relationship.
Instead of asking will s/he come back, these thoughtful questions gets the focus on you and puts the power back in your hands.
- What can I do to heal from this breakup?
- What can I do to move on?
- What can I learn from this relationship?
- What were my blind spots in this relationship?
- What issues do I need to focus on in order to prepare myself for a healthy relationship in the future?
- What role did my own issues create in this relationship?
- What do I need to know about finding a healthy relationship?
- In what way might I make better relationship decisions in the future?
Remember: put the focus on you, not on them. Because your future includes you and may not include them.
A Tarot Spread for Moving on from an Ex
If you’re having trouble moving on, this tarot spread which is featured in Tarot For Troubled Times, might help you reflect on what you’re holding on to – and what your next steps might be to let go.
Shuffle the deck thoroughly. Once you feel that you’ve shuffled enough, place the deck on the table, face down. Cut the deck into three piles and then put the piles back into one. Fan the deck out and choose one card for each question:
- Card one: Why am I missing this relationship?
- Card two: Why am I holding onto this relationship?
- Card three: What do I need to see that I’m not at this time?
- Card four: What is my next step to let go and move on?
Look at the images. What are they saying to you? What does your intuition tell you? Let’s use a sample reading.
Charlie’s partner left him three years ago. Although the divorce is long behind him, he’s still hung up on his ex. Here are the cards he chose:
- Card one: Page of Cups
- Card two: Nine of Wands
- Card three: The Emperor reversed
- Card four: Four of Cups
Here are possible interpretations:
- Card one: Why am I missing this relationship? Page of Cups – The Page of Cups symbolizes love, romance, infatuation. Charlie misses the romantic element of the relationship. They fell in love when they were young, and had a whirlwind courtship. He likes the way his partner made him feel: loved, joyful, and young.
- Card two: Why am I holding onto this relationship? Nine of Wands – The Nine of Wands is the wound. Charlie is deeply wounded by this sitation. When his partner moved on, it seemed to come out of the blue, which left him feeling unsafe, insecure, and afraid that he might get hurt if he opened himself up again like he did with the ex.
- Card three: What do I need to see that I’m not at this time? The Emperor reversed – There was a lack of maturity either in the partner or the relationship. The Page of Cups, while delightful, lives in the realm of fantasy while the Emperor is mature. Reversed, it shows the relationshiop never matured past that romantic stage. When it came time to do the actual work of living together and taking care of responsibilities, the partner got bored and took off. Although there was love, it most likely was more of an infatuation and the bubble of that got burst when real life set in.
- Card four: What is my next step to let go and move on? Four of Cups – It begins by accepting that this situation, although not what he wants, is probably not going to change. Accepting this also means not sitting around, hoping for a differnet outcome. Sitting around waiting for the ex makes it unlikely that Charlie is able to see the many gifts being offered to him. The figure in this card has the arms crossed over the chest, a sign that Charlie is protecting his heart and closing off new possibilities. If he’s too fixated on the past, he is not allowing the present – or the future – to give him what he wants. Time spent with a therapist could help him “uncross” his heart and open up again to something new. That could take time but even a small effort could open him up to new possibilities and the magic that is right there, underneath his nose. Learning to believe in love and be vulnerable is a process that won’t happen overnight but a change in how he’s dealing with things at this time will restore his faith – and open him up to a new, mature relationship that will give him the commitment he desires.
While there is no one way to let go, the one thing I like to remind people is that no one gets spiritual by holding on. Waiting around for an ex sends a message that “there isn’t enough love out there.” It’s scarcity mentality and keeps you locked in romantic limbo. You must trust that the Universe is benevolent and abundant. When you begin to believe that and live that, you create space for the right one to emerge.
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© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2019
image from stock photography and personal collection