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Another Sedona Moment

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She Didn’t Know We Were Coming

“These cards are the headline of your reading,” Chaya explained as she placed three cards in a row between us.


She then turned the cards over one at a time. The first was the Eight of Hearts. “Oh, this is good. This shows that you are content. In all aspects of your life. Work and family. Everything. Things are going well.”

I sat in my chair and placed my hand in front of my mouth, trying to make sure I didn’t smile too broadly, start laughing, or run screaming from the room.

The next card was the Nine of Diamonds, another good card that spoke well of my life. I continued to hide my mouth and wondered when the right time would be to tell her I was a skeptic. Not just a skeptic, but that I thought the entire thing was poppycock.

Chaya went on and turned the third card over. “Ah, the Ten of Diamonds. This shows that you are working on finding balance. Within yourself. You are trying to find equilibrium between the many things you are experiencing in your life.”

She leaned back in her chair. “What do you think of your headline?” Chaya asked.

Was this the time? Nah. “Well,” I began, leaning forward and pointing at the cards, “the ten of diamonds. That’s right. I’m working on that. I always have. Trying to find balance and figure out how to make all this make sense.”

I paused. What should I say about the rest?

“But the rest?” I pointed at the eight of hearts. In particular, that was the one. “You couldn’t be more wrong. I’m not content with anything in my life. Work, family. None of it.”

* * * * *

It was Saturday and we had a few hours to spare until dinner time with no plans to fill that gap. Driving away from an artist’s collective in West Sedona, we started talking about what we could do. The wife pulled up a list of “things to do” in Sedona and read “Get a psychic reading” and I exclaimed, “Let’s do it. Let’s get a psychic reading!”


“Yes. Let’s do it.”

You see, I’m just a fundamental non-believer in all things spiritual and otherworldly. Aliens, God, organized religion of any kind, ghosts, spiritualists, psychics. It’s all poppycock. But we were on vacation. What the heck! Besides, the wife believes in all this, so let’s just see what happens.

While I drove, she googled and found Chaya. She called and we all agreed we would get to Chaya’s place in the next half hour and be good to go. But Chaya certainly didn’t act like she knew we were coming and then gave us such complicated directions we got lost on our way to her place. Twice.

But she had that name. Chaya. And an accent as any self-respecting psychic should. I think.

* * * * *

Chaya gathered the three cards together. “Let’s see what the cards say,” she told me as she laid out a 5 x 5 grid of cards. “The King of Hearts represents you.” When it showed up it was on top of a Joker, which meant something I no longer remember in the whirl of the many things she said in my $60 worth of 30 minutes of her time.

That card showed up in the third row and second column of the grid. As Chaya explained things after the entire grid was laid out, the vertical column represented my current life, while the horizontal row represented both past (to the left of the King) and future (to the right of the King).

Chaya pursed her lips and pointed to the card directly above the King of Hearts. It was a Seven of Clubs. She laid her finger on the card. “This, the Seven of Clubs means you are crying inside. Whether it is anger or frustration or sadness. This means there is a lot of tears.”

I sat back for the first time. In my head, the word Wow exploded. Maybe I was wrong about this whole thing. Because, yeah, there are a whole lot of tears inside me these days. Tears I don’t shed on the outside, but tears that fill me on so many levels in so many ways.

I let her go on.

Chaya pointed at some other cards. One she said showed that I enjoy the good things in life. Good food and fun and other things. Which is kind of true, but kind of not.

At some point we started having a back and forth about the different cards and what they meant. We talked about work, of which she shared with me what a couple of the cards meant. As we discussed what my work options might be, she turned over more cards to guide the discussion further. At the end, Chaya suggested the cards showed that sticking things out in my current position would be better than a new job. Well, yeah. Sure. Maybe. I don’t know.

Somewhere during our discussion I told her that I was a skeptic about the whole thing, but that the Seven of Clubs was just so incredible.

We talked about my kids a bit. Actually, only my older son. According to Chaya, the card at the bottom of the vertical axis of my life represented my older son. She said that there was a lot of love there between us, but that he was struggling. All true, but I wondered what my wife, whose reading was before mine, might have said to her about our kids. As I learned afterwards, there was discussion about them and that Chaya may have got information from that discussion that could have informed what she would say to me about him.

By the end of the reading, I told Chaya that I felt like it was more of a counseling session than a look into my future. And there’s nothing wrong with that. On that level I felt something good come out of the time with Chaya.

But am I a believer?

It wasn’t long before I started to see the holes in the whole thing and the logical explanations for things that at first appeared to defy logic. That Seven of Clubs? Well, of course, I had just told her that I wasn’t content in anything in my life. Of course I’m crying inside. Duh!

Within a few minutes of leaving Chaya’s, I googled what the Seven of Clubs means in tarot readings. Turns out it could mean all sorts of things — some completely inconsistent with what Chaya told me and some entirely consistent with her thoughts.

There were other things. At the beginning of the reading, Chaya asked me to select three decks of cards from a collection of twenty or so different decks. She then told me to pick one of those three, hold it in my hand, and close my eyes. While I did so, she told me to think of two things. I don’t remember what, but what I do remember is that during the first thing she told me to think about, I smiled. In response to the second thing I was to think about, I stopped smiling. I frowned. It was not a happy thought. Just that one moment could have told Chaya something that would inform the direction she would take during my reading.

And much of what she said about my professional situation was informed by things I said to her once we started talking.

So …

She didn’t even know we were coming. How can I believe anything of what followed?  😉

But …

Chaya was from Switzerland and three-fourths of my heritage is of Swiss origin.

And …

That damn Seven of Clubs and the crying.

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