Roberta, tarot reader and soul midwife-in-training

Tarot reader and soul midwife-in-training Roberta Verdant tells us about herself and offers some guidance on Spooniehacker’s launch
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[Image: Moana Photography. Deck: The Wild Unknown]

We’re woo-positive here at Spooniehacker, and intend to write a fair bit about spirituality and how it’s essential to spoonie survival for many of us.

We’re also friends with and fans of spoonie tarot reader and future soul midwife Roberta Verdant. So we thought we’d ask Roberta to do a mini reading for the Spooniehacker launch. We wanted to seek some guidance, not only for the publication but for its contributors and all those spoonies who will hopefully read and become involved with the magazine in the future. Here’s what Roberta came up with, and some further info about her too:

Card #1 (represents Spooniehacker): IX of Wands

Spooniehacker is a mix of the hopes of the editors that this new project be birthed, and the hopes of its contributors and what they want to see out in the world. There’s a strong crossover between the two, which suggests a positive non-hierarchical structure, but there may need to be some work done around boundaries.

Spooniehacker is a pathway into the unknown, in some ways. This is a very exciting prospect, but needs to be paced as it’s put together so as not to be overwhelming for its editorial team. Don’t rush, just let things happen at their own pace.

Card #2 (represents past influences): IX of Cups

There were so many (valid!) emotions behind the ideas for Spooniehacker. Now, as it’s in the editing phase, it’s becoming more focused. This will help with deciding on the future direction of the magazine. So though sometimes it may not feel so to its editors, Spooniehacker’s mission is getting clearer.

This clarifying of the mission is really to be nourished – to the point where symbolically lighting a candle nightly for it could be a good thing to do: a mark of respect for the work that’s gone into it and a recognition that the finished product will be launched out into the world/into light. Ritual can also be an excellent way to create/work on boundaries.

Card #3 (represents the present): VI of Swords

At present the editors may have a sense that they’re wrestling with Spooniehacker! There may be a sense of initial dreams feeling further and further from view and of simply having to toil. However, throughout there’s never an entire loss of the sense of a light at the end of the tunnel/a recognition of the utter satisfaction there’ll be when Spooniehacker comes to fruition.

[Editor’s note two days before launch: This is all beyond accurate!]

Card #4 (represents the future): V of Cups

Spooniehacker’s future is all about balance, putting the magazine out into the world in the most energy-sensitive ways possible. Community is incredibly important for Spooniehacker, and this is two-fold: it will serve a community, but community around it will also make it feel more solid/easier to put together in future.

This increased community element could include asking the Spooniehacker community what features they’d like to see or direction they’d like the mag to take. It could include collaborative features. And in very practical terms, it could include approaching charities/funds supporting projects around disability and seeing if they’d be willing to sponsor it or similar.

[Editor’s note: this is all part of our plan :-)]


The single most crucial aspect around Spooniehacker is that it must engender a feeling of support, rather than creating burnout for its editors or writers. Currently, it’s full of good ideas, talent and possibility – it simply must not place too much weight on its editorial team. In part, this very neatly correlates to its audience, editors and writers: most chronically ill people become adept at meting out their spoons/being careful with their energy limits. In some ways, the compilation of Spooniehacker – both now and in the future, is a reminder of that.

On more specific notes, here are some possibilities for future editions: use of themes;  an edition dedicated to artwork by spoonies; guest editors. However, as mentioned, the most pivotal factor seems to be a strong sense of support to contain Spooniehacker. Within this, finding financial backing/funding for it is key, and would help to ground the concept.

A Spooniehacker retreat at some part may also be an interesting idea to consider!

[Final editor’s note: basically spot-on. Again, the suggestions made in the summary are ones we are already working with – particularly the retreat idea! The importance of not creating burnout for ourselves and of including the community heavily in the creation of Spooniehacker are things we will take on board and keep reminding ourselves of.]

About Roberta

Roberta is 34, from the UK and works remotely as a tarot reader. She’s a queer, femme, witch. Some of her diagnoses include: eosinophilic esophagitis, TMJ, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and polycystic ovarian syndrome. Roberta also currently lives with multiple intolerances, sensitivities and allergies; some severe. These developed after exposure to carbon monoxide and toxic mould.

Recently, doctors have suggested she is displaying symptoms of fibromyalgia and possibly an autoimmune disease of the connective tissue. She’s slowly beginning to pursue the possibility of testing for Mast Cell Activation Disorder.

Roberta has a background in facilitating writing and storytelling workshops and writes poetry, fiction and non-fiction. Her writing can be found in various publications. She completed a foundation in Dance Movement Psychotherapy and loves many things creative.

Raised non-religious, she identifies culturally as a Jew and additionally as Pagan and polytheistic. Her favourite daydream is Kyoto. She is currently training as a soul midwife (a companion to dying and grieving people). You can read a little more about her and a lot more about her work at: 



[Single card images: Spooniehacker team]


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