Literary Lenormand: Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult

Leaving Time, Jodi PIcoult

Leaving Time, by Jodi Picoult

The library tells me have a scant week to read Jodi Picoult’s new novel, Leaving Time. The clock is ticking, and I’m only on page 8! Seems like the perfect time to continue learning the Lenormand, doesn’t it?

Leaving Time is about a woman’s grief over the loss of her mother, a scientist who studied elephants but who then disappeared mysteriously, and her search to find her. Or so I gather from the jacket copy.

Asking the Lenormand what will happen in this book, I drew: the Stork, the Fox, the Garden.

Stork, Fox, Garden, Lenormand

The Stork, the Fox, and the Garden…and notice, as well, the Queen of Hearts on the Stork card. Is that Alice, our protagonist’s mother?

The Stork: my guess here is that, through flashbacks, we will early on find the story of the protagonist’s birth and/or early childhood. But storks also have to do with migration. Do elephants migrate? I have no idea! But that’s another possibility here.

The Fox: Two things here: work, but also some kind of trickery. I think we’ll learn more about our elephant scientist’s work (honestly, though, I could guess that from the cover copy). But there’s also something mysterious, something tricky, going on. And, again, to be honest, I could guess that from the jacket copy as well. But that’s not the Lenormand’s fault! :-)

And finally: Not the Coffin, which would make me think that the protagonist will discover that her mother has died. But instead, the Garden, a meeting place–I think she will find her mother, and they will meet. I am inclined to think they will meet in person, but perhaps not–perhaps the meeting is a meeting of the minds, since I can also tell from the cover copy that she reads her mother’s journals. But I don’t think that’s going to be it. The Garden involves people in groups, public and private occasions, Rana George tells us (I’m referring to her Essential Lenormand as I study the Lenormand). I have this idea that Jenna, the protagonist, may find her mother giving a scientific talk in some public forum–though that also makes no sense, because surely she would have been in touch with her daughter if she were able to. Maybe I’ve just watched too many movies!

So, I have a week to read before handing off the book to the next person who has requested it from the library, and will post an update below after I finish. So if you’re reading along with me–either finish before me, or don’t come back to this page until you have! as you might find a spoiler. But feel free to post comments if you are reading along–this is my “on the record” prediction of what will happen, so from the point of view of this as a learning exercise, you won’t spoil that by telling me what happens.

3/2/15 about 2 a.m. update…

Just finished after reading all day and half the night…this is a very good book. I won’t spoil it for you. However, these cards are accurate, but my interpretation of them above is not quite right. An unexpected ending! What a surprise, from Jodi Picoult! (Maybe SHE is the fox….) :-)

Who Is the Devil?

“Do you think it’s possible to sell your soul to the Devil?” A friend asked me recently.

Wow. That raises so many other questions! Who is the Devil? Is there such a thing as a devil? Who am I, and do I have a soul, and if I do, what would constitute a sale? How would the purchase agreement be set up and who would adjudicate any possible disputes that might arise? And what would the Devil do with my soul anyway? Is collecting souls his hobby (you know, like the Tooth Fairy with teeth)? Moreover, I’m interested in the converse: if I can sell my soul to the Devil, does that mean I can also buy a soul from the Devil? Can I buy the Devil’s own soul? And what would I do with it? What could contain a soul, anyway?

I’m willing to go out on a limb and say that I don’t think a body can contain a soul. I think souls tend to lurk around in the vicinity of our bodies, but, to stay inside all the time? I just don’t see souls being able to be imprisoned like that. I think our souls go on walkabout from time to time. Maybe a lot more often than we think. Do the following words sound familiar to you? “What am I doing in this room? What did I come in here for?”

Okay, maybe that’s not a good example. Maybe our brains go walkabout as well.

The Devil

The Devil–in a multitude of decks!

Be that as it may. Let’s get to the tarot-related aspect of this question. Who is the Devil? There’s one in every tarot deck!

No matter what deck you use, though, people tend to become concerned when they see The Devil. And I think what’s so disturbing about this card is not that it seems so negative, but that of all the cards in the deck, this is the one that people most commonly think represents an actual person in their lives — and on some level, some people are afraid that they themselves might be, in some sense, the Devil.

Personally, I think it’s time we made peace with the Devil. Look how miserable he is! Poor thing.

Here’s the the thing about this card: it’s not so much a person, as a place. Where does the Devil reside? In Hell. In those moments when you feel that you or someone you know could maybe be the Devil, at least a little bit, consider that those are the moments when the person in question, whomever it might be, is dwelling, at least partially, in Hell. That Hell could be anger, it could be fear, it could be stress of all sorts, but what makes it Hell is not the negativity of the emotion that is connected with it. What makes it Hell is that you feel like you are trapped there for all eternity and it will never ever ever get better. And furthermore, you feel that must deserve it, because who goes to Hell without deserving it? At least, that’s the Christian doctrine that many of us grew up with. So we get stuck in Hell, we think we can’t get out, and we think it’s all pretty much our fault anyway. At that point in time, life basically sucks.

But like so many things in life, Hell is an illusion. No, hear me out on this. The SUFFERING of Hell is NOT an illusion. When you’re in Hell, you do suffer. I would never presume to suggest otherwise. But the whole being trapped there for all eternity and thinking it’s all your fault and feeling like you should, while suffering, be sure to feel guilty as sin about it….that’s an illusion. It’s just not true. Number one, there is a way out. Somewhere. I don’t know where it is, for you. But you sure are not going to find that way out if you’re sitting in a fetal position concentrating as hard as you can on how badly this sucks (like the person in the Gaian Tarot’s Devil — or Bindweed — card). Still, if that’s what you’re doing, you also don’t need judgement from me or anyone. Curling up in a fetal position is not a bad first step. It’s really fine. Maybe that’s the time that you need in which to regroup. Maybe you’re in shock (which can be serious, by the way). So I’m not saying, don’t do the fetal position thing, because that’s fine and it may be just what you need. It may calm you. It may encourage you to breathe. It may become a meditation. It may, truthfully, for you, turn out to be the actual way out — it’s possible.

But if it isn’t. That’s when you might need to work with the situation gently, applying good humor and patience wherever possible. If curling up in a fetal position regenerates your patience and humor, then by all means, repeat as necessary. Nobody said you had a deadline for getting out of Hell. Sheesh, if you’re there, might as well explore the place.

In fact, maybe exploring the place is the thing that you most need. Maybe that’s what you “deserve” — NOT the suffering, not the overall suckiness of the situation, but the chance to learn by exploring areas that are not your favorite destinations. What if even those moments of being “trapped by the Devil” were good for you? What if those moments were necessary (and they are in the sense that all things have a cause, and really a long line of causes going back through beginningless time)? What if your time in Hell was necessary for your overall well-being? How would it affect your outlook if you simply decided to operate on that assumption?

These are questions, and lots of them, and I don’t have answers for you. But if you think you’re the Devil, and you think I’m going to run away screaming from you, think again. I plan to make you a nice cup of tea. And if you think you’re going to get my soul, think again about that too. My soul can’t be contained. Even I can’t lock it up! So I’d say you’re in no danger, ever, of selling your soul to the Devil. I don’t think it can be done. I don’t think the Devil could hold your soul for a nanosecond. I think, truthfully, that your soul goes where it wants. If you’re not in touch with your soul at the moment, don’t blame the Devil, just go find it. Begin the Fool’s journey, even if you have to set out with literally nothing but your faith. Just go.

Am I My Brother’s/Sister’s/Parent’s/Spouse’s/Child’s/Friend’s Keeper? Or Why I Don’t Believe in Co-Dependency

If you have a loved one who sometimes behaves in ways that other people view as a problem, you are likely, at some point, to be labeled as “enabling” or “co-dependent.” You’re especially likely, in my opinion, to receive this label if you are a person who doesn’t believe in trying to control other people’s actions, and who especially does not believe in trying to control the behavior of another person who is actually an adult of sound mind.

Six of Pentacles; Six of Cups. Uh-oh, is there enabling going on here?

Six of Pentacles; Six of Cups. Uh-oh, is there enabling going on here? No, I don’t think so. What I see here is generosity, love, and forgiveness.

According to PyschCentral.com, if ANYone in your family is dysfunctional in ANY way, you are probably co-dependent. Excuse me? Talk about guilt by association. Let’s just blame everyone who in any way has ever associated with someone who behaved in a way that society doesn’t appreciate.

Of course, it is true that some people do have a hard time saying no to a loved one or setting boundaries around another person’s behavior in order to live their own lives. I think this is actually true of almost everyone at some point. When we find ourselves at such a point in our lives, we can certainly benefit from learning to work on boundaries for our own protection so that we can live our own lives. But let’s look at the language that’s being used here: “enabling,” and “co-dependent.” Do you see how the very language of this diagnosis is centered around another person, NOT the person who is being accused of being co-dependent? 

And let’s consider the source of the label: it’s one thing if an individual comes up with this idea on their own: “oh, I wonder if I am setting appropriate boundaries with my loved one? I wonder if I should continue to put up with being treated in a certain way?” When you notice that something is a continual challenge in your life, and you choose to address the issue, that is very empowering, and notice: that’s you taking action in your own life to make a difference for yourself.

Are the Queen of Cups and the Queen of Swords really at odds with each other? No, I don't think so. The Queen of Swords will enforce those boundaries that we need. But she wouldn't allow herself to be bullied -- she can tell when words like "enable" are embedded in bullshit. And she would never turn her sword against the Queen of Cups just because the Queen of Cups is so loving. Moreover, if she saw that the Queen of Cups had turned upside down, I think the Queen of Swords would find a way to lend a hand, rather than simply flinging  psychobabble at her.

Are the Queen of Cups and the Queen of Swords really at odds with each other? No, I don’t think so. The Queen of Swords will enforce those boundaries that we need. But she wouldn’t allow herself to be bullied — she can tell when words like “enable” are embedded in bullshit. And she would never turn her sword against the Queen of Cups just because the Queen of Cups is so loving. Moreover, if she saw that the Queen of Cups had turned upside down, I think the Queen of Swords would find a way to lend a hand, rather than simply flinging psychobabble at her.

However, when a third party labels another person as enabling or co-dependent, notice that the emphasis is usually NOT on the supposedly co-dependent enabler but rather on that person’s relative/spouse/friend. What’s happening here is NOT empowering for the supposed co-dependent at all. Instead, it’s a way of using that person to try to manipulate the behavior of the person who is regarded as dysfunctional or as being “enabled.” It’s simply a way of treating the “co-dependent” as a pawn in a game of power politics: if I apply pressure on you, maybe you’ll apply pressure on this other person, and something will change. 

Frankly, I don’t appreciate it. I think it’s an appalling displacement of responsibility. No one can control the actions of another person. I can’t. You can’t. No one can. You have control over your own actions and your own choices — not those of other people. If you act like a jerk, that is your responsibility. But if someone else acts like a jerk, I just do not see how that is your fault. Not even if you do the jerk’s laundry or make dinner for him/her.

Not even if you gave birth to this jerk. Not even if you married this jerk. I mean, I suppose a third party could say, “well, if you hadn’t given birth to this person, he/she wouldn’t be here now irritating other people!” or “if you hadn’t done this jerk’s laundry, he/she would still be at home looking for clean clothes and not bothering others with his/her generally obnoxious attitude!” But that, to me, is a bit of a reach.

When you do laundry for a loved one, when you put food on the table, when you provide a roof over someone’s head, when you are kind and loving with another person, when you listen and don’t judge, when you behave in a way that is respectful of another person’s autonomy, that’s not being co-dependent or enabling. We need a different word for this behavior, and fortunately, the English language has supplied us with an ideal one: supportive. 

Men: Stop Measuring Your Worth in Dollars

The reversed Empress and the reversed Queen of Pentacles, from the Samurai Tarot.

The reversed Empress and the reversed Queen of Pentacles, from the Samurai Tarot.

“Bonnie, what on earth do you see in me?” Those were my husband’s words to me one day a few months ago, when he was feeling particularly low. Why on earth would he say such a thing? Because he thinks he doesn’t make enough money. Such was the damage done by his ex-wife, who does measure a man’s worth in dollars, and taught him to do the same.

I used to think there was nobody in the world who would ever judge the lovableness of another human being based on that person’s financial situation. Common sense tells me that money is just a convention. It’s just something that we all agree to pretend has meaning. How could any human being become so out of alignment with basic ethics as to imagine that money is important at all — let alone think that the most important aspect of a romantic partner is the size of his or her bank balance?

Sadly, I’ve learned (mostly by hearing heartrending stories from men, but also from occasionally hearing unbelievably callous comments from women) that there is, as comedian Bill Burr so eloquently points out, “an epidemic of gold-digging whores in this country.”

There are women out there who think that a man’s wallet is his third testicle, and the fatter that third testicle is, the sexier those women think a man is. And I think it’s shameful. From a tarot point of view, it makes me think of the Queen of Pentacles reversed. Upright, the Queen of Pentacles is so earthy and sexy — someone who can be genuine and present. Reversed, she just seems compulsively obsessed with, and controlled by, the material world. Upright, she has immeasurable depths and the courage to delve into them, but reversed, she may have those depths but prefers to hang out in the shallows — and to be shallow. (And when she becomes a mother, she is not the Empress upright — loving and empowering her children — but rather the Empress reversed, suffocating her children, constantly hungry for and jealous of their attentions, and prone to using them as pawns in her own power struggle with her by now ex or soon to be ex-husband.) But I’m not here right now to lecture the ladies. I leave that task to women’s consciences.

What I am here to say is, men, don’t buy this bullshit. Your wallet is NOT your third testicle. You never needed a third testicle in the first place. If you find a woman who you think you need to impress with a fancy dinner and expensive gifts, maybe you should ask yourself if that woman if going to fall in love with you or with the fake you’re pretending to be. Real women don’t need you to peel them a grape or buy them a car or a fur or a fancy diamond ring.

Men, what women need is for you to be genuine and for them to be able to feel that they can be genuine with you. (And if your partner is a man, believe me, he needs someone he can be genuine with too.) Do you want a real relationship or are you just trying to do power politics? If a real relationship is what you’re looking for, you’re going to have to be brave enough to show your weaknesses, and you might as well do it right from the start. If you can do that — guess what — you may just find that the woman you love loves you NOT for your money OR your education OR the class into which you were born but rather for your courage, your vulnerability, your tenderness, and your ability to dive into life as if you actually intend to live your life’s mission, not just make it to age 90 with a good-sized 401k.

The Lovers reversed, The Devil

The Lovers reversed and the Devil, from the Universal Waite. When two people in a relationship are not honest and genuine with each other, when they base their relationship on an addiction to money or power, they end up with NO real relationship. The relationship turns into a chain. Instead of The Lovers, you end up with The Devil.

This isn’t just a relationship issue, though. The very same man who buys into a partner’s co-dependent belief that his success or failure in life can be measured by how much he earns is likely to believe that himself. How much depression and anxiety in men is kindled by money issues? If you want to know how absurd this is, consider this: one of my favorite editing clients lives in Europe and pays me in euros. Since I live in the U.S., that means my bank balance is partially dependent on the strength of the dollar compared to the euro. When the dollar is weak, I get paid more; when the dollar is strong, I get paid less. Imagine how I would feel right now, watching the dollar slowly get stronger, if I was hanging my self-esteem on the euro to dollar conversion rate! Yet I see men all around me who have hung their self-esteem on an economy the strength of which is not based on anything they did or didn’t do. Men, I can’t say this too many times: don’t do this to yourselves. You are lovable and worthy of respect, even if you have not one dollar (or a euro, or any other form of currency) to your name. If you want to measure your net worth, measure it in lovingkindness, in tenderness, in honesty and sincerity, and in ethics — not in money. 

Just Tell the Truth

Crossing your fingers, behind your back, in front of you, or anywhere, does not make it okay to lie. Why would you even think that?

Crossing your fingers, behind your back, in front of you, or anywhere, does not make it okay to lie. Why would you even think that?

At the risk of sounding preachy, don’t lie. Tell the truth. If you’re looking for a New Year’s resolution, this would be a great one. Okay, maybe it would be okay to tell a lie if the lie was absolutely necessary to save a life — but even then, it would still be better to save that life by simply telling the truth a bit more creatively. Use less specific words. Or say true things that are in the ballpark of the requested answer but still not quite it. Or true things that misdirect without actually being untrue. Or simply answer a question with a question. There are so many ways to answer a question without lying but while still not giving away any private information that why anyone would ever deliberately tell a lie in any circumstances is almost beyond my comprehension.

Using Kant’s famous example, let’s say a murderer is at your door looking for your friend who is in fact hiding in your house. The murderer says to you, “is your friend here? Because if he is, I need to kill him, immediately.” Why could you not say, for example, “Here? in Milwaukee? That’s an excellent question! I know he went to Chicago in June.” That could all be 100% true, but could also misdirect as needed to preserve your friend’s safety.

Why is that a better answer than “No, I have not seen him in weeks”? Because if you let your friend into your house, unless you are blind or seriously visually impaired, you probably have seen him quite recently, perhaps only minutes earlier. If you say that you have not, that would be an out and out lie.

Who cares about the difference between gentle misdirection of a question and a boldfaced lie? YOU SHOULD, THAT’S WHO!!!

Our universe is woven together, in part, by words. When you tell a lie, you start to unravel the fabric of the universe. This, at least, is my working hypothesis. Because I have observed again and again that when people lie, the lies always seem to be shortly thereafter followed by experiences that the persons in question would very much prefer not to have experienced. Call it karma if you want. But it’s fast, efficient, and ruthless.

And so not worth it.

Telling the truth, on the other hand, affects us quite differently. When we tell the truth, even (maybe especially) when the truth is hard to stomach and even harder to speak, we help to repair the fabric of the universe. And good things start to happen around us. That’s karma too. Suddenly doors start to open that were previously locked up tight. Opportunities arise. We get to move forward instead of being stuck in quicksand. And lies, my friend, will turn to quicksand faster than you can say “jack rabbit.” You WILL be caught in them. You WILL sink. And you will be lucky ever to get yourself back out. You CAN get yourself out, though. Do you want to know how? BY TELLING THE TRUTH!!!! 

If you don’t believe me, keep a journal of truths and lies that come out of your mouth, and also note the events that follow over the ensuing days. Conduct your own experiments. Just be careful. Truth is an incredibly powerful tool, and lies are a VERY dangerous thing to play with. Try not to cut yourself — or anyone else.

Blessings Capitalists, or, the Economics of the Attitude of Gratitude

Five of Pentacles

How many blessings can you find in this picture? (Five of Pentacles)

Sometimes people can be just a little too perky for me. Yes, I’m one of those. Or at least, I used to be.

The perkiness and positivity is starting to infect me, you guys. Yes, that’s the danger. It gets into you and then it starts reproducing madly like an out of control virus! I KNEW those perky people were dangerous.

I have started to realize some things. (Understatement of the year.)

You know those people who talk about the attitude of gratitude? Oh, how I hate that phrase. Love the concept, but hate the phrase. Because it’s just so perky like a little tiny cheerleader.

But here’s the thing.

Even those of us who are leading chaotic lives in which we run around putting out fires all the time still have small blessings. Is there anyone out there who has never found a penny?

Well, there are two kinds of people who find pennies. The ones who say to themselves, “a penny, nice. And what can I do with THAT? Exactly NOTHING.” And the other people who say, “oh, how nice, a penny. Well, it’s not much, but it’s better than a poke in the eye. I shall save this penny. If I put it together with some other pennies, I might have enough to mail a letter! Now that would be a blessing.”

Do you see how the first person ends up with even less than before — a penny came to that person, he or she ignored it, and thus ended up without that penny, and with a gratitude deficiency as well.

The second person, though, earned a blessing profit. The second person is a blessing capitalist (a term which I have just invented, you’re welcome).

Now I’ll grant you that the blessing profit earned on a blessing as tiny as a penny is, indeed, quite small. But, again, here’s the thing. It’s easier to earn a profit on small blessings. Follow my logic carefully for a moment.

When a large blessing comes along, it’s almost too big for us to appreciate it properly. But when a tiny blessing comes along and we overreact to it with extra appreciation, we magnify its ability to bless us significantly compared to the small amount of blessing that it already represented in our lives. Precisely because small blessings are so small, it’s actually pretty easy to magnify them quite a lot compared to their original size. It’s not so easy to do that with the larger blessings, not that we don’t appreciate those too.

As Benjamin Franklin said, “A penny saved is a penny earned.” In the world of blessings, a penny appreciated and made much over and loved as if it were a cute little kitten could actually be more like a nickel or a dime or dare I say it, a quarter earned. That’s a magnificent return on your investment.

Think about it. And if you’re going to be a capitalist, be a blessings capitalist.

P.S. And in case you haven’t figured this out already — I’m not just talking about money here. You can be a blessings capitalist as easily with a sunset or a smile from a friend or beautiful fall leaf as you can with a penny.

Is There Such a Thing as a Tarot Emergency? No, But Tarot Is a Potential Resource in Times of Emotional Crisis

Every so often, this question comes up: is there such a thing as a tarot emergency? Most of the readers I know will tell you that there is no such thing, and that, in fact, you are better off doing a tarot reading after whatever crisis has arisen has passed, when you are calm and able to pay attention to your reading. Moreover, in a true emergency — such as a medical situation, or a legal or financial crisis, it’s very important to consult a professional who specializes in a form of service that is appropriate to the matter at hand. If you are bleeding, for example, a doctor will help you MUCH more than a tarot reader. If someone is threatening your physical safety, you may want to consider calling the police. If you are going to court, you need a lawyer. If you are anxious about your taxes, you need an accountant. Obviously. I think that’s common sense and that you all know this.

That said.

There are some occasions that are not technically emergencies, but that feel as if they are. And often a crisis that does require professional help can, later on, spiral into a series of non-emergency emotional meltdowns.

And that’s when some people start to think that maybe, they have a tarot emergency on their hands.

They don’t. What they have, actually, is an emotional crisis. And there are many things about emotional crises that are — oh, let’s say “not nice.” But, one of the things that IS nice about an emotional crisis is that emotional crises can be treated in a variety of different ways. For example, it’s possible to talk to people in one’s support network — family members, friends. It’s possible to get counseling. It’s possible to take Rescue Remedy or other flower essences. It’s possible to have a nice soothing cup of chamomile tea. It’s possible to take time for meditation. It’s possible to call a support hotline and talk to a volunteer listener. It’s possible to go to a support group.

Given that there are SO many options for handling emotional crisis, calling such a situation a “tarot emergency” is a little bit like saying that you have a pizza emergency. No, you don’t. You are just hungry and craving pizza. But you won’t starve without it! Even if you are in a hurry and don’t have the time or inclination to cook, you could still do something else. You could eat an apple, or a bowl of cereal, or make a sandwich. Unless there’s no food in the house, in which case you have a grocery emergency. But that is still not a pizza emergency!

On the other hand, though, if you are hungry, it is true that eating pizza offers a good probability of satisfying your hunger. Depending on the pizza, you might even stand a chance of getting some decent nutrients out of the deal.

Likewise, if you are in an emotional crisis, a tarot reading is an option that could help to ground and calm you so that you start to feel better. It’s not a tarot emergency, because there are SO many other things that you could also do to handle an emotional upset. But just as everyone has their favorite food, and some people’s favorite food is pizza, everyone has their favorite way to ground and come back to earth — and for some people, that favorite way is tarot. And if that’s you, that’s fine. Tarot is a perfectly acceptable go to option for times of emotional upheaval.

Unlike some readers, I am not one to think that you should never have a reading when you are upset. I actually feel that tarot readings can be a great comfort during times of emotional distress. I don’t think that you should expect the same results as you would of other readings, but then you’re not asking for the same results, are you? Hopefully not!

Here are some questions you MIGHT ask tarot during an emotional meltdown:

  • What is the root of this situation?
  • What do I need to know right now?
  • Why am I having such a hard time with this?
  • What role is this situation playing in my life at this moment?
  • How can I best emotionally support myself through this difficult time?
  • What other resources can I turn to for support during this time?
  • How can I ground?
  • How can I bring myself back into balance?
  • What are some things that I need and don’t need to help me to be in balance?
  • How can I best support my friend/lover/relative who is having a crisis?
  • What can I learn from this situation?

Here are some questions you should NOT ask tarot during an emotional meltdown:

  • Should I break up with my significant other? Is my significant other a selfish jerk? Am I a selfish jerk?
  • Should I quit my job? Should I close my business?
  • Should I move to Australia? (See also Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.)
  • Should I loan a large sum of money to my friend or relative?
  • Should I sign this contract?
  • Should I do this business deal?

Do you see the difference? It’s better not to make major decisions when you are upset. It’s also better not to jump to drastic conclusions about your friends, family, and business partners when you are feeling emotionally fragile. At those times, the best focus is YOU: helping you to feel better, taking the edge off your panic, bringing you down to earth, bringing you back into a state of balance so that you begin to feel calm and grounded again. Once you’re feeling more like yourself again — that will be a better time for you to start considering any major life decisions that you may or may not feel are warranted. It’s okay to take time out first, and let the world deal with itself, while you attend to emotional first aid.