June started in exhaustion. I’d moved into a new home, celebrated my son’s first birthday, launched a large project, and unexpectedly flown home to help my mother recover from surgery—all in the preceding two weeks. “Overwhelmed” felt like a polite way to label my state of mind. “Drained and depleted” was the less sunny, but more accurate description.
So when I had the chance to cover the In Goop Health summit in Los Angeles for Well+Good, I jumped at the opportunity. Sure, technically I’d be wearing my reporter hat. But a work day that promised green juice, wellness panels, and lunch catered by Sqirl—now, that was my kind of 9-to-5, and a brief escape from the still-packed boxes that filled my house.
When the big day came, I picked up a pair of GOOP VIBES sandals and explored the grounds. There were stations for (among other things) nontoxic manicures, numerology readings, a $130,000 hybrid car, and B12 shots. Lithe women swanned about in floaty linen as I stuffed my face with vegan Mexican food and all the free kombucha I could guzzle. It was a healthy, luxurious, expensive world, and as much as my conscience grappled with the privilege and exclusivity of it all, I also found myself thinking, “Gee, if I were rich, I’d totally buy this fancy granola.”
It’s a miracle if I find time to shower, much less think about my future.
A day of activities stretched ahead of me, and my first appointment was with psychic Suzanne Guillette. In general, I am both fascinated by and skeptical of psychics. I’ve had enough precognitive dreams to believe that our minds are capable of more than we know. And yet, in the information age, details about a stranger’s life are only a Google search away—so how unknown can any of us be, really?
Guillette greeted me warmly. She has a friendly face with big, blue, inquisitive eyes. “What do you want to focus on today?” she asked.
Hell if I knew—I hadn’t thought about that in a while. Tapping my usual what-should-I-do topics—career and relationships—didn’t make sense; both were going well. My life felt robust and full. Actually, maybe a little too full. Between waking up at 5 each morning, taking care of our son until his nanny arrived, scrambling to work while I had child care, cooking dinner or cleaning up from it, putting the baby to bed, and squeezing in some couple time before finishing the scraps of work left at the day’s end…it’s a miracle if I find time to shower, much less think about my future.
So here’s what I told Guillette: “I have no idea what I want to focus on. I’m really happy and grateful for my life, but it’s also a lot.” She smiled, pulled out her Tarot deck, and went to work. She said that I had some sort of big change in my housing situation. Bingo: My husband and I had bought and moved into a house just weeks before. She noted that my priorities have shifted and that family is number-one. Also true. Perhaps most excitingly, Guilette said that I was planting financial seeds that would grow in a big way. This was thrilling news, because it meant that someday, I’d finally be able to buy all the rich-person granola I wanted.
It felt more like a caring, guided therapy session than anything else.
As the reading continued, Guillette asked me non-judgmental, open-ended questions. It felt more like a caring, guided therapy session than anything else. And Guillette gave me a rare, valuable, elusive thing: uninterrupted attention on my own dreams and needs. It was only 20 minutes, but that was enough to help me realize that while life will always be busy, I need to make more time for myself.
That’s easier said than done, but since the summit, I’ve made some progress. I’ve asked my husband to take our toddler out for father-son time every weekend so I can have a few solo hours. I’ve scheduled five additional hours of child care each week. I’m taking more time to zone out in the garden. And while I’m still busy, I’m getting better at vocalizing my own needs—even if what I need is as simple as a bath. Mothers do a lot for their families, for their relationships, for their work. For everyone except ourselves, basically. You don’t have to be a mind reader to notice that. But sometimes, a psychic is just the person to help you see.
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