Here it is, folks! The first card I ever read/learned was the High Priestess from the Tarot of Transformation deck. I think that was rather apropos, given that I was going to be exploring Tarot more.
I remember it like it was yesterday. My aunt Suzi (a gifted labyrinth designer and guide, also choreographer and all around creative genius) took my cousin Karen and me to the Women and Spirituality Conference in Mankato when I was 19. I was completely clueless about anything there, except Tarot, which I had heard of and read about (e.g.: heard tell of) in books. At the time, there was only 1 Tarot class at the Woman and Spirituality Conference (now there are often several), and I decided I'd like to have my own deck for classroom purposes. I walked straight up to Amazon Books (later True Colors, now closed) and looked over the boxed decks they had there. There was this purple deck with stunning artwork, that seemed to scream "MEMEMEMEMEME!!!" and I bought it, having absolutely no idea that it was one of the most nontraditional decks on the market, even to this day. I just knew it was beautiful.
I would later get tingling and a warm sensation in my fingers when I touched the deck, which I wouldn't understand until I got to class with Nancy Antenucci. She was in her third year of teaching one Major Arcana class every Mankato conference.
The class was fascinating, as Nancy's classes always are. I learned a lot about the High Priestess, got to see a lot more High Priestesses from other people's decks, and got to spend time learning about my own deck a little bit as we broke out into small groups for readings. I scampered right up to Nancy's stall when the class was over and signed up for a reading with her, as well as purchased her "Between the Worlds" packet, which guided me on the very beginnings of my Tarot journey. We later turned that packet into a book called Psychic Tarot, which, according to my royalties checks, is still filling personal Tarot libraries to this day. I find this very humbling, and am forever grateful to Nancy for the opportunity to write with her and to those who have found our book helpful in their Tarot journeys.
I say the High Priestess was an apropos first card because the High Priestess is the keeper of our sacred scroll and the gatekeeper of the mysteries of the Moon. Your sacred scroll is the scroll of your life, detailing the milestones you are supposed to hit and containing the future, present, and past. It's a reflective card, and a card of intuition.
This High Priestess is still my favorite High Priestess, and the High Priestess is still my favorite card. She was the beginning of my Tarot journey, which continues to this day.