The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has been a cultural, societal, and emotional reckoning.

Everyone has taken (and lost) something different out of this.  At large, our collective consciousness has taken stock of the word “essential.” Essential businesses – essential work – essential people. Essential in this context being – if the world were to close down again right this minute,  who and what would I need?

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My personal essential needs and responsibilities mostly align with what the state of California says I need: fresh fruit, editorial production, marijuana, and limited social contact. Check, check, check,  and check. I lean into everything – cut fruit and flowers; photographs and essays; midnight joints and dog walking. I dream and bloom in the darkness. I miss nothing other than seeing my friends and my psychic.

I say this with chagrin, but in all seriousness, I have spent more money in the last year on meetings with psychics than on clinical therapy. Seeing a psychic and investing in myself in that way is supernatural self-care. A good psychic should have more or less the same energy of care as a close friend. You don’t see a psychic to see a psychic – you see a psychic to be seen by somebody else.

I know it sounds crazy. But I see it everywhere, the neon lights advertising clairvoyance and palm readings and the pulling of tarot cards. My first psychic experience was when I was 19, with a woman sitting on the steps next to me in Union Square in New York City. She said hello to me as I was smoking a cigarette on the first warm day of May.

I tried to ignore her, but our eyes kept meeting – and then she asked me if I would like a reading. I told her no. Not because I didn’t want to, but because I had no money—the night before I had left my wallet on the subway—so I was living on dollar slices from my friends until my new bank cards came.

She insisted and gave me a free 40-minute reading. She shuffled her cards and I pulled them from her hands. She told me what she saw, and I saw myself in everything she said about me during the reading.

Her name was Uversa, a moniker wordplay based on the word “universe.” I was surprised that she saw so much potential and truth in me – that a stranger on the street could believe in me and really see me like that. Our meeting was seven years ago – and my memory of it is a little hazy at times, but I know her story by heart. Not because of her specifically, but because of everything else that happened to me afterward – the successes, the failures, the relationships, the tracks between my art and my future as a writer.

I don’t know how, but every time I see a new psychic—a different person in a different place—they tell me the same things as one another. I finish their sentences with alacrity. They tell me I’m going to have two kids, and I tell them that I absolutely do not want children. Every single time, they tell me that I will have a boy and a girl in synchronicity.

I go to multiple people and every time someone tells me something I am unsure about, I ask the woman with the glass ball to pull another card. They almost always double down and tell me the hard thing I don’t want to hear.

They predicted my successes as a writer and a model, going to fashion week, and the literal exact day I won an artist’s fellowship (the same day my odometer in my Toyota hit 77,777 miles). They saw the breakups and falling-outs in my future. This year, I got a text from one of my psychics that she envisioned me on a private jet – right before I took a long work trip. The next day, I got bumped up to first-class for a flight back to New York.

And then I saw her again – my first psychic, Uversa, on the streets there, seven years later. I was too scared to say hello, but I hope she felt my presence.

So I say without shame that I have spent more money in the last year on supernatural self-care than clinical therapies. I paid someone to pray for me and teach me how to meditate during the pandemic and it changed my life and dulled my anxieties completely. My inner peace of mind is priceless.

It didn’t necessarily bring more fortune to me, but it made me really see what was actually there, and all the possibilities intrinsic to being alive. It made me lean into the essential. Psychics are the most essential workers in my life.

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