I’m a little bit on edge. I’m waiting to hear back about a job; I’ve been through two rounds of interviews, and one of my references told me the hiring manager had been in touch. I’m also waiting to see if I get interviews for two other jobs I applied for. I’m on pins and needles, full of jumpy energy, wondering what will happen next, but also curiously reluctant to move on to the next phase.
Even though I was lucky enough to get some severance pay, being out of work has not been all leisurely morning coffee and pajama lounging. It took at least two weeks for my body to remember how to relax even a little. It’s been scary to drift in all this in-betweenness, even as I’m intensely grateful for the opportunity to do so. I can’t recall any extended period of time since I was sixteen years old that I haven’t been working full time, going to school full time, or some combination of those. I always have a plan, and I’m the kind of person who makes spreadsheets recreationally. Why, yes, I am a Virgo sun with Taurus rising—why do you ask?
But as challenging as it’s been, I’ve loved it. Slow mornings reading the internet and journaling, taking an art class that meets on a (gasp) Tuesday morning, space to think about who I am and dream about what I want my life to be, resting when I’m tired and eating when I’m hungry. Starting a tarot blog! I don’t want to give up that autonomy, despite the reality of my bank balance.
And so, in the midst of all this jittery angst, I decided to pull a daily card. I got The World.
The World is the last card of the Major Arcana, and it’s one that used to puzzle me. The books I read defined it as everything, the culmination, ultimate fulfillment. I was like, what does that even mean? It’s just so vague. The image on the card isn’t very helpful either—is it about meditation in fancy hats?
But recently I looked it up again and learned that another definition is graduation, or the end of a cycle. That, I can understand. The Major Arcana is often described as a progression or a journey, beginning with The Fool and culminating with The World. For me, that connects with the idea of healing or development as a spiral. That is to say, the process is never truly complete; we encounter the same challenges over and over again, even after we think we’ve resolved them. But that doesn’t mean we are stuck in a loop. Instead, we are progressing in a spiral, and on each successive level of the spiral we loop back around to the same places of challenge. And each time we encounter one of our recurring challenges, we have more wisdom and experience with which to confront the challenge.
So The World is saying, you did it! You completed this loop of the spiral, and soon it will be time to begin again at the next level, carrying forward all of your hard-won knowledge. You’ll become The Fool again—full of older, wiser Foolishness—and step off the cliff.
I don’t know what this means for me. Maybe it means I’ll get the job! But even if I don’t, this card is challenging me to look back at all the things I’ve learned and all the work I’ve done in the professional cycle I’ve just completed, to celebrate what I’ve accomplished, and then to let that momentum carry me forward into the next leap of faith.