Confused: Love Readiness Reading

Link to visual spread here. I'm using the Rider-Waite tarot deck here to do a reading about my readiness for love as I'm considering how to approach a possible new relationship or if I even should. The placement reads from left to right and each placement corresponds to a specific question. It goes:

1: what love means to me/what I want out of a relationship 2: what I have previously learned from past relationships 3: what holds me back from love/relationships 4: the readiness of my heart 5: the readiness of my mind 6: the readiness of my spirit

3-6 makes total sense to me, it is 1 and 2, Lovers reversed and King of Swords, that are throwing me for the loop. here's what I've dissected so far:

1: I'm finding it ironic that in my reading about love, the first card I pull is The Lovers, but reversed. I find that my deck has a dry sense of humor and likes to piss me off with it's irony in order to get a point across. So that's why I feel that this pull in particular is really throwing me off. The first slot is for "what love means to me or what I want from a relationship". Reading it as is, the card in reverse stands for disunion, disconnection, and disharmony. That's definitely not what I want out of a relationship, so how should I go about interpreting this? I'm trying to remove my personal bias from the reading, so interpreting it as "avoid this" feels disingenuous to the reading as the original question is "what does love mean to me and what do I want out of a relationship".

2: "what I have learned from love" also feels strange with the King of Swords, as he represents authority and control, over intellect in particular. Having a stable control over your mind and your wants is how I would usually read him. The aspect of being able to see the truth within a situation is the only part I can see me having learned from love previous. However, as background, I am currently undergoing psychological treatment/therapy to recover from abuse I underwent in my past relationships, so I do not feel that I learned control over my emotions or know what I want anymore due to this trauma. Is it telling me that I do know how to do that?

3: Ace of cups reversed for "what holds me back". To me, this isn't subtle at all, it makes perfect sense. Reversed, ace of cups can mean self-love or repressed emotions, both of which make sense as to why I 1. Don't know if I want a relationship persay or 2. Am unable to begin one despite wanting one. I'm trying to focus on myself within recovery so that may be what's holding me back, but I have been recovering for about a year and that's why I put myself back out there recently. Which means as I enter into a relationship, withholding my emotions will be a setback as, due to my last experiences, I don't feel confident in being able to express my needs or emotions safely. This was a known issue and something I am in therapy for.

  1. Readiness of the heart: 5 of swords reversed. My heart is ready to move on from the battle and move forward. Straightforward here.

5: readiness of my mind: the sun reversed. I've lost touch with my optimism and inner child, and as such my mind fears repeating the past or only focuses on the negative.

6: readiness of my spirit: queen of pentacles reversed. An interesting note here is that the queen of pentacles often is my significator. Reversed means I'm focusing inward and may feel out of balance, which rings true to me, particularly in my exploration of the spiritual, which has been a big focus of mine on my healing journey thus far. Focusing inwards reflects back to my third slot as well, having to do with the ace of cups flowing inwards rather than out.

That's what I've got so far. As an aside, I also did a one card pull asking "what is happening between this person and I?" And got Judgement, straight up, which feels connected to the lovers reversed to me in that Judgement represents a choice, nearing an end of the journey, while my overall love card is the lovers, reversed signifying disunion.

Please help and thank you if you do!

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Kerrie Mercel

Currently Kerrie Mercel, inspirational speaker, author & facilitator for the health and wellness industry. Kerrie enjoys working with professional business women helping them to find the power to live life on their terms.