Oracle Of Ybor: Job And In-Law Drama

Sep 25, 2023 at 12:04 pm
Welcome to the Oracle of Ybor.
Welcome to the Oracle of Ybor. Photo via Adobe Stock.

Dear Oracle, 

I feel stuck in my current job. I don’t feel appreciated there and feel like I don’t have much room to grow. However, I haven’t had much luck with applying elsewhere. How can I survive this position until something better comes along? 

-Looking for Greener Pastures

Cards: Knight of Cups (rev), Ace of Pentacles (rev.), The Hanged Man (rev.), Waning Gibbous 

Dear Green,

This damn Waning Gibbous is screwing everything up. It’s a card about letting go and comes at the very end of the spread, which makes for two possible but completely opposite interpretations. The whole spread either means A.) “Start doing this and let go of expectations” OR B.) “Stop doing these things.” And unfortunately, they both seem like reasonable answers to me in this context.

So here are the two possibilities:  

A.) For this job, I think you need to “play the game” a little more. It would be great if work was really based on merit, but often, it’s not; it’s based on connections. With the emotionally intelligent Knight of Cups next to the work-work-work Ace of Pentacles, I think you might need to work on your networking a bit more. With The Hanged Man, I think you might be misunderstood in your company and feel like you’re putting in much effort without reward. It might be because your boss doesn’t see it, for whatever reason (personal bias? Kind of spacey? Large company?), so it might help to make a more solid impression. However, if you make more of an impression, that might help with your growth. For the Waning Gibbous, you have to let go of the idea that your hard work will be the only thing that matters. Networking isn’t fun for many people—it can feel braggy or artificial—but personal relationships can carry you far.

B.) This might be a job that you need to let go of. With the only Major Arcana being the sacrificial Hanged Man, you might be martyring yourself for no good reason. Having three reversed cards might suggest that you’ve been trying to put in a good effort, be a team player (Knight of Cups), and keep your eye on the prize (Ace of Pentacles), but this might be the best it gets. With the releasing energy of the Waning Gibbous, you might need to let go of these actions and stop sacrificing for this job—and really start looking for another.

I’m unsure which way you’re leaning, but hopefully, one of these makes sense. You might even marry the two and start networking more in order to find a better job. I do know that something has to change—you aren’t happy and the current avenue isn’t providing many opportunities—so you could try path A first and, if that feels wrong, head down path B.

I’m sorry I’m not able to provide a more precise answer.

Best of luck.

Dear Oracle, 

I know it’s cliché, but I’d like to have a better relationship with my husband’s parents. Things aren’t bad… they’re just not very warm. Any advice for improving relations with the in-laws? 


Cards: King of Cups, Queen of Wands, Six of Swords, The Hermit (All reverse.) 

Dear Daughter,

Since writers were making overbearing mother-in-law jokes in Ancient Rome, one might guess that in-law drama has been around for about as long as marriage has. It might be cliché, but that doesn’t mean there haven’t been plenty of people who have felt like you over the centuries.

With all these cards in reverse, I’m guessing this has been an issue for years rather than something creeping up now. 

Starting off the King of Cups, I bet you want to improve relations for your husband’s sake. Maybe he has a dreamy idea that all of you could be a happier family, and you would like to make that true. But, this relationship is between you and your in-laws—and in reality, there’s little that he can do.

You mention that the relationship isn’t very warm, and as the Queen of Wands, that warmth needs to come from your side. You might have to be the generous and giving one, even if they don’t make as much effort in return, and you have to accept that imbalance. It’s not ideal but it may help. But remember: the Queen of Wands can be fiery, so be mindful not to torch any bridges if you feel slighted. 

However, the Six of Swords reminds us that relationships are a two-way street. It can be a card of transition and change; if you all want to move forward, that can happen. But, if someone is holding a grudge or just not interested, then there’s only so far that boat can float.

The Hermit is the only Major Arcana here, and I think it’s doing some heavy lifting. It can be a card of a strong inner life and being misunderstood by outsiders. It’s possible that you and your in-laws may be missing something about each other that can hopefully be rectified with conversation and mutual growth. But The Hermit is also a reminder that we have but one life on this earth and to live it wildly. If you try and try and your in-laws don’t want to be kind to you, let go of the dream (or your husband’s dream) that things will be better. You can judge how much energy you want to put into being civil with them and maintaining a cordial relationship. (I do recommend you aim for cordial simply because your husband loves them and loves you, and that makes it easier for all parties.) But you don’t need to go out of your way to deepen your relationship if you think they have no interest. Just show up to Thanksgiving with a pie and light-hearted conversation and leave it at that. A deep relationship would be wonderful, but if it’s not on the table, don’t lose yourself trying to find it.