Saturday, 24 March 2012

A new venture

I have been extremely busy lately conjuring ideas around a project borne out of sheer passion for my newly acquired art of Tarot reading. While the skill is still at a stage of infancy, budding with new insights, each time I go into a deeper exploration of the cards, I saw it as a hobby that I could hone to touch more people outside my circle of close friends and family.

Reading the tarot cards for friends in the past few weeks had been a wonderful experience. I am so grateful to them for giving me the opportunity to use my intuitive reading of the cards to provide them with different perspectives that could help guide them with the right choices to influence the outcomes of their respective situations.

I felt so good every time I managed an accurate reading of a spread for a friend. And I felt even better when I could use my interpretation of the cards to guide a friend to make choices that could positively influence her to better respond to a challenging situation.

So with much excitement, I created a name for my new venture, Sun Goddess Tarot. It's a name promising positivity, optimism and vibrancy. I chose the name because I wanted to be able to bring positive energy to people who approached me to have their Tarot cards read.

I had also designed a logo which brought out the essence of what Sun Goddess Tarot was all about and I am currently in the process of designing a website as well.

I was brimming with excitement all week whilst working on my new venture. Don't get me wrong. I still love my day job as a marketeer and would never give it up to pursue an alternative career at which I feel that I still lack experience in. I would consider Sun Goddess Tarot as a hobby that spurs me to use my gift of intuition for a greater good.

I did worry about the skeptics among my friends who might think that I had fallen into the looney bin. And I even had thoughts of being bound and dragged away to some clearing deep in the forest to be burnt on a stake. However, with increasingly more accurate readings that I had done, my lack of self confidence just dissipated.

I haven't the faintest idea where this project will take me but I know that whatever the outcome may be, I am at least having so much fun with it.

Oh, and by the way, in response to the hilarious text messages that I had been receiving, I don't make house calls on my broom, I don't wear an orange pointy hat, I really am not afraid of water, and I don't go "swish and flick" with a wand. However, when you have decided that you are not afraid of my new skills, I would love to read your cards for free.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

The little things that inspire us

I do not wake up everyday hell-bent on inspiring people around me. Not especially, when I stumble haplessly through life sometimes with the hope of being inspired myself. However, if every little that I had done could help make a difference to someone, then I am assured that I have woken up with a purpose.

Apparently my blog had inspired a friend to start writing. If you read her blog riddled with so much wit and humor at, I am glad that I had influenced her in the right direction. She had so much to give through her writing that I hope her efforts would pay forward to another inspired soul who could write equally beautiful prose that may bring warmth and laughter to those who read it.

Perhaps, through my blog, I had reminded her that she could touch other people by writing from the depths of her heart because she was such a beautiful and giving person.

Apparently the Tarot cards I had read for a few friends had also inspired them to turn their respective situations around at my advice. I had a friend who approached my newly acquired art of interpreting Tarot cards with skepticism, waving her finger at me while reproaching me for pursuing a heathen practice that could justify my getting burnt at the stake. However, out of curiosity and in a bid to be entertained by my court-jester's antics in clumsily shuffling the Tarot cards, she wanted to have me read her cards "just once for a laugh".

Like most readings that I had done before, I preceded the session with a warning that I would just read what the cards tell me as truthfully as I could. The cards that she had picked were wrought with so much negativity directed at her current marital situation which I wasn't privy to. So while she listened to my detailed interpretation of her cards in obvious horror, I then proceeded to hold her hands while telling her that the Tarot cards were not a fortune-telling tool, but were rather, a reminder that she could influence the outcome positively or she could open her mind to a different perspective about the outcome. Inspired by my advice, she made strides to have more meaningful conversations with her husband and spent more time with her family. It had been 3 weeks and from what she had shared with me yesterday, happily, the couple hadn't stopped talking since.

Perhaps, through the cards, I had reminded her that she had a gift of a beautiful family that she should never take for granted.

Funnily, as I touched people in however strange a situation has presented itself, many people have touched me in the same way.

David is a perfect example. He performed at 2 gigs over the St Patrick's Day weekend at Boat Quay to roaring success. I was inspired, not because he had played to a full house of thunderous applause and wonderful support from friends. I was inspired by his commitment to the performance, dedicating every evening for the last few months to diligently practicing the songs either with his band mates or on his own.

Now, David is not a rock star. While I am quite sure that he had harbored that ambition to be one when he was 13, he is as much a rock star as I am a Sports Illustrated model. Yet, the past couple of months saw me living the life of a band widow. I had been working late most nights, coming home to a lonely dinner with only McCoy, the attorney from my favorite tv program, Law & Order for company. At almost midnight, David would walk in with his guitars and other equipment, exhausted, having just ended his band practice. And when he wasn't practicing with his band mates, to my annoyance, he would be singing along to his guitar, drowning out McCoy's cross-examination of the accused on the witness stand.

Well, the practice paid off. I was so inspired by that dedication.

Amazingly, as David was practicing to perfect his performance, Joel found himself a new hobby. He stood by his Pops to learn everything he could to improve his photography techniques. Every chance he got, he would follow David to his band practice, rugby tournaments, and jamming sessions just to take as many photographs as he could. So I have dedicated the photos within this blog entry to Joel. They were his best photography work yet.

Another person I was inspired by in his band, was Declan. Beneath that exterior of a quiet and gentle Irish man, was this mean bass guitarist who picked up the instrument only last December. I could hardly believe that it was through sheer dedicated practice that he could perform with such ease last weekend while enjoying every minute of it. He deserved my respect surely.

One shouldn't look too hard to find life's little inspirations. I was lucky because they were always right in front of me.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

The angry woman has almost left

No, as much as I detest David's habits of leaving his dirty clothes lying around the laundry basket and placing empty chilli sauce bottles and Parmesan cheese containers back in the fridge, I am not leaving him.

I have to admit. I had been tempted to do so a few times before, particularly on days when he thought he was doing his bit for the environment by reusing an underwear from the night before. However, I could never bring myself to leave the man who packed a lifetime of happiness and marital bliss within almost 11 years of marriage, promising me more is yet to come.

So, what did I mean when I said that the angry woman has almost left?

In an earlier blog entry, I described myself as "the angry wife" because of my impatience, my arrogance and my intolerance for many things from loud noises, crowds, untidiness, callousness and dishonesty. I am also particularly unforgiving, and have a penchant to drag out the past, remembering every minute detail down to the nose hairs of an ex-boss from that bank during one of our frequent fights, for example.

However, in the last 2 weeks, I felt like a different person. Calmer and more rational, and almost at peace with myself. David, always having borne the brunt of my quick temper, was the first to notice. Happily so. This evening, he said he couldn't quite recognize his wife . Recalling an old movie "The Invasion of the Body Snatchers," he mumbled something rude about his wife being abducted by aliens.

So I thought it was best to explain the transformation that had taken place recently. I owed it to 2 beautiful crafts which I wished I had discovered years ago. These were - writing a blog and mastering the tarot.

Writing this blog offered me an outlet to share my thoughts with my friends and family. I spent years internalizing as much happiness as I have, hurt and anger that had been accumulating over the years. The only way I knew how to verbalize my emotions was through my belligerence and my expressed utter contempt for the establishment. This blog helped me to structure my thoughts in such a way that I could view every experience I had with a sense of humor and gave me the courage to express this with candor.

Mastering the tarot gave me the opportunity to heal myself. Every reading that I had done for my friends was done with a genuine hope to help heal them as much as my cards had healed me. There were times, when I read the cards for some friends, and I pulled out "negative" cards like the Tower, the Devil, Death and 10 of swords.

To the untrained mind, these cards looked ominous. However, I have learnt through my studies of the Tarot, that sometimes, the cards are advising one to embrace change with an open mind, or sometimes they advise one to face one's fears and have the courage to confront the truth. Sometimes, they advise one to take a step back and approach an issue with a measure of consideration.

When I read my cards for myself, I found myself listening intently to their whispers, offering the best advice I have ever gotten. How wrong could it be for myself, or for anyone else for that matter, when the advice is not to approach a particular issue with aggression but to trust my own instincts and be patient?

Contrary to the views of skeptics who view my Tarot reading as a heathen practice, I saw it as the universe's way of telling me that I am always guided to do what's right for the people around me, and for myself. Just for that alone, my Tarot has contributed to my transformation.

Don't get me wrong. It's still me, in here. Just, a better me. I actually like me better now. I hope you do too. So with this blog entry, I leave you with a picture of Joel at the Transformers exhibition at Resorts World this evening. Well, we went to the exhibition, but we never got to see it. We arrived at 6.30pm, just in time to see them dismantle the exhibits. Usually, I'd tear into a mega rage having rushed all the way from work in an attempt to treat the family to a great night out, only to be disappointed that they missed out on the exhibition. However, I didn't. We had a great night out anyway, notwithstanding the closure of the exhibition, the rain and the hordes of tourists at Resorts World. We even topped our evening with a shopping spree at Candilicious. So you see, I do like the new, calmer me better. The family thinks so too.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

My "A-ha!" moment last week

I had an "A-ha!" moment last week. It stemmed from months of emotional struggle attempting to juggle a new environment at the office and a new phase of motherhood managing the hang-ups of a boy trying to be a man preparing to enter tertiary life.

I drew on the comfort from a friend who advised last year that I should stop being so hard on myself and to seek solace in new pursuits like taking up courses for self improvement.

My "A-ha!" moment came last week when I had decided to heed that advice and signed up for Tarot reading lessons. The appeal to me, laid in my perception that it was easy enough, wasn't time consuming as it took up only 2 weekends of my time, and I remembered being described as intuitive.

What I didn't know was that it was an extremely brain-draining course filled with intense emotional hard work and numerical sophistication for a hard-nosed, non-numerical person intent on not expending brain power during a weekend. And it was such an expensive course that I was surprised they weren't handing out bursaries.

I also did not realize that the weekend without the family at my side was decidedly uncomfortable and I forgot that the person who described me as intuitive years ago was Joel, when he skipped Sunday school for weeks whilst hiding out at the church canteen, hoping that I wouldn't find out.

So I went for my Tarot reading course with an opened mind and a receptive heart. I worked very hard that weekend and was surprised that I actually enjoyed the course tremendously. I found the stories behind the Tarot extremely fascinating and the myths surrounding it, intriguing. My Tarot teacher even said that I was intuitive and highly sensitive, hence that made it easy for me to tune into the energies of people whom I read the cards for. I felt very proud because throughout my school life, I was the renegade who copied my classmates' work and studied for the exams the day before the paper. I also had no interest in anything depicted in numbers unless there was a dollar sign in front of it. However, last weekend, I nailed every reading that required my interpretation of timeline.

My friends laughed at me or looked at me quizzically when I told them that I studied the Tarot. I would too if I were in their shoes. Some of them have asked me to read their Tarot a few days ago. I haven't had any complaints from them thankfully. I thought they had rather enjoyed the process as much as I did.

I graduate next week after another weekend completing the advance Tarot course. The girls at work and the boys at home joked that I should don my Hermes scarf on my head and brandish a pair of bangle-sized hooped earrings and be the "party trick" at social events, the "official mascot" during holistic festivals, set up a table at company dinner and dance events and busk at the MRT stations. Very funny.

So I will end this blog post by sharing my favorite Tarot card from the major arcana suit - The Empress. The Empress describes a person full of love, sense of nurturing, a generous and giving spirit. She brings warmth and comfort to everyone and everything she touches. She signifies an abundance of new life and encourages you to embrace life and all the goodness it brings.

I like that positive energy the Empress brings and hope you will embrace my new pursuit with the same open mind and a generosity of heart.

Postscript: After sharing this blog entry on Facebook, my friend in New York asked me to do a "long distance" Tarot reading for her. It was my first experience. However, after interpreting the cards and sharing it with her, she told me that I was "spot on accurate". It felt good to be giving her something from my heart.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

The Office

Today, the girls and I moved our offices from the 14th to the 10th floor. The move was done within 2 hours. I liked to think we were quite efficient because we had cleverly moved our stuff to the new premises bit by bit over the last few days. However, the truth was that half my team were in the company for less than 2 years. SK for example, joined us only about a month ago, so all she did was to saunter down to the new office with her laptop, pencil and a rubber.

Being in the company for barely 2 years, I am not sentimental about leaving our old premises on the 14th floor. However, what I would miss will be our crazy lunchtime bantering at our little pantry, sharing a good laugh, exchanging gossips and occasionally venting a morning's worth of stress and frustrations over a packed lunch.

The old office on the 14th floor was, well....old. I remembered when I started work with the company on my first day, just barely 2 years ago, I was confronted with a huge red banner with a motivational quote printed on it just by the front door. I can't remember what the quote said now, so it must have been quite forgettable even then and throughout the 2 years.

I was also taken aback by the high partitions separating each workspace. I thought then that it was quite parochial, and set out to remove the high partitions. I told the girls that I did it so that I could see their beautiful faces, but later, they caught on to the fact that I felt so lonely behind the high partitions and needed to have people to talk to. Being confined to an office in solitude and near deathly silence for a few months almost drove me to find a way to unlock my window so that I could jump out for fresh air. It came in handy too, that with the partitions removed, I could see when the girls brought goodies like chocolates from home, so that I could accidentally hijack them.

Our new offices on the 10th floor was spanking new. It came with all new furniture, new phones that looked like the control and command deck of the Star Trek Enterprise, new pantry furnishing including an espresso-maker and pretty ergonomic chairs. It was a nice and refreshingly opened office. The only catch was that they had squeezed 6 departments into that floor space. Joy. We have to learn to live like a family under one roof. While I had to get use to getting spooned at the little pantry while making a cup of tea, the folks there had to get use to my rather loud disposition.

That explained why I had odd stares today by folks from the other departments around the corner when I was laughing so loudly with the girls during our usual bantering sessions. I was also met with stares of sheer fright when I hollered at Joel over the phone. I tried to look for the ladies room but barged into the gents' instead by mistake, only to be met with a shell-shocked bloke at the urinal who had probably wet his pants when he saw me. The pantry was also quite a distance away and I had probably trained for a marathon from that walk from my desk to the pantry only to find that there weren't any paper cups anywhere near the coffee machine. So I had to train for next year's marathon by walking back.

The relocation was a good thing and in many ways, it signaled a fresh start. I have decided that I wouldn't be less loud and brazen in the new office environment. In fact, it's a good opportunity to influence the rest to get louder and more brazen.