Ace of Cups + Bee Spirit
Queen Bee was tireless in the care and longevity of her hive. She gave much of herself away in the name of trying to support, nurture, guide and hone all her worker bees. She loved them and what they did for the hive, and she did not want to be just another Queen who put endless demands and expectations on those who worked for her. She wanted her bees to love her in return—to work for her because of will and desire, and not because of fear or necessity. So, she bonded with the bees, nurtured the bees, showed the bees the way. She realized that there were so many of them that needed her. She found herself always giving, always needing to be available, always needing to tend to all the other bees of her hive. And they truly loved her—for being a different kind of Queen, for being their Queen. But the Queen Bee found she was burning out fast; she was tired all the time, depleted, exhausted, drained, sick. When she attended the regular meetings of the Queens—because, obviously, there are regular times when all the Queen Bees of all the lands gather and meet up—she noticed none of the other Queens were like this. They were all plump, energetic and buzzing with excitement. She came to realize, after one of these meetings, that she was giving all of herself away to her bee hive; and, while she didn’t want to fall into formation like the rest of the Queens, she did need to strike a balance between what she had been doing and what she needed to do to maintain herself. And so, the Queen Bee re-evaluated her work ethic and re-evaluated herself. She needed to start prioritizing her relationship with herself equally to her relationships with the rest of the bees; she needed to start recognizing that this was not a selfish move, but a necessary one in order to maintain herself and her hive. So, she still loved the bees, still gave herself fully to them, still nurtured and supported and guided them as best she could, but, she also drew boundaries, recognized her limits and did what she needed to for herself to decompress, reset and tend to her own needs.
As time went on, the Queen Bee noticed that this changed not only herself, but also the mutual respect she had with the rest of her hive. They may have loved her before, but she began to see their love escalate to a new level. Once she established boundaries with them, it helped them to establish boundaries with themselves. It helped them to function more independently and, she realized, it showed them a new way of operating. Moreover, doing the work of putting herself first helped her to cultivate love and respect for herself more openly and honestly. She realized that by not giving herself away to others, and by giving more fully to herself, she flourished… and so, too, did others.
May brings the hardworking energy of Bee Spirit, coupled with the loving energy of the Ace of Cups. The Ace of Cups is a card of new relationships and new possibilities; for me, this is always a pertinent time to re-evaluate the most important relationship I have: my relationship with myself. Too often, we neglect this relationship because we feel it is less important than our relationships with others. We prioritize our friends, our families, our children, our clients, our others. We think it’s selfish to give to ourselves first, and so we put all these other people ahead of us. We give and give and give to these relationships, nurturing them so that these other people will flourish and be supported and provided for and cared about. But in doing this, in giving so much away to others, and failing to give back to ourselves, we deplete our own reserves. And we risk burning out.
The Ace of Cups is not telling you to neglect all the other important relationships in favor of yourself; rather, it is asking you to reconsider how you view the relationship you have with yourself, particularly in comparison to how you view your relationships with others. Do you prioritize yourself? Do you feel it’s selfish to put yourself ahead of others? Are you worried that by spending time to nurture your own relationship, others will crumble in its stead? The Ace of Cups is the beginning of your ability to redefine your personal relationship and begin to tend to your own needs. It is not selfish to tend to yourself, in fact, I believe it’s the exact opposite. When I prioritize myself (my needs, my time, my space), I am better able to give to myself and give to others. When I respect the boundaries required to lift myself up, I actually help others to respect themselves and their own boundaries, as well. When I replenish my reserves by dedicating time and effort to the things that truly fill me up, I am better able to be there and be supportive not only for myself, but also for the other important relationships in my life.
And, as Bee points out, this is difficult and tireless work to undertake. It can be challenging to first recognize how we can better prioritize the relationship we have with ourselves, and what we can begin to do to realign that relationship so that it is more whole and balanced. Perhaps it’s that you let your healthy habits go and need to recommit to eating a balanced diet, working out, staying hydrated and taking your supplements; or, perhaps you are an introvert and need to ensure that you dedicate enough alone time to reflect, resurface and recharge; or, perhaps you need to identify what self-care truly looks like in the form of nurturing your relationship with yourself and put in place the limits and boundaries necessary to take care of yourself. At first, these can be difficult things to identify and begin to do. But, if you stick to it, as Bee Spirit points you toward, if you put in the time and effort and work required, you will renew the relationship you have with yourself and I guarantee you will also notice the rest of your relationships changing for the better, as well. Put in the work and soon enough you’ll be lapping up the honey.
It’s okay to have boundaries.
It’s okay to put yourself first.
It’s okay that your most important relationship is the one you have with yourself.
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