Hurray For Laughter!

I have no idea what topic I want to talk about, which probably means this is going to be a satisfying post for me.

The less forethought I put into what I’m going to write about, the more I feel myself smile and feel happy as I write.

Perhaps an exercise in just being present in the moment.  Not having an agenda, not having a “lesson” in mind.  I don’t know about you, but I hate being lectured.

That was the first feedback I ever received from someone about something I wrote online.  “You sound lecture-y.”  Or was it “You sound preachy”?  Either way, I was offended.  Until I reread what I wrote from that perspective . . . and then I realized . . . ugh.  I don’t even want to hear what I have to say.  That was a discussion board attempt back in 2005, so I’ve had some time to work on that.

I figure if I make my own self laugh hysterically at least once while writing a post, then I’m on the winning side of things.  Not necessarily because I think I’m hilarious (I do) but because when I’m writing, it’s like I’m sitting at a theater watching a movie.  I’m just present and watching what’s unfolding on the screen in front of me.  The words come through my fingers faster than my brain can register them (Taurus Mercury . . . with massive doses of Gemini in 2nd house ).

So sometimes I’ll be typing along and my slow ass Taurus Mercury catches up to my fingers and then out of nowhere I’m busting out laughing.  I *know* I typed it . . . but it’s like I’m reading someone else’s blog post.

You know what else happens.  I even once was purposely trying to write a down-to-earth post with no funny hahas AND thought I had succeeded . . . published it . . . went back to read it through as if I was someone else coming to my site . . . and proceeded to unexpectedly snort laugh through a great majority of it.

For some reason, no matter how I write things, whether the narrator voice in my head is being “Ophelia gone wild”, or serious and mature (Captain Picard),  or all Romeo-and-Juliet-tragic . . . when I go back and read it after it’s published . . . the narrator voice ALWAYS turns into a little kid that goes around saying, “Hey!  Hey!  Hey you know what?!  . . . “And then, and then this one time . . . ”  Every time.

Geminis.  Am I right? {looks around room bobbing head seeking validation}

Okay, even I don’t get that joke.

That’s just it.  Most of the time I have no idea why something made me laugh so hard.  I will just be innocently meandering through life’s obstacles, and then *suddenly* . . . Bwahahahahahaha.  Whew . . . oh man . . . my stomach hurts.  If I purposely try to be funny, or find something funny . . . no go.  If I try to be serious . . .  then I end up on the verge of peeing my pants.  (<— oh . . . that sounds like a Saturn in Leo/5th house topic of conversation.  No wonder my humor is off from everyone else’s.)

Here . . . I’ll give you some examples of things that have made me laugh so hard that I thought I would die . . . and people look at it and go “eh”.  They end up laughing just because I’m sitting there laughing so hysterically at something that is just so stupid.

Here’s one that still makes me laugh so hard I can’t breathe:

BrohoofOkay . . . now tell me, HOW is that *not* hilarious?!  (Don’t really tell me.  I need this.)

Okay . . . here’s another one:

funny-goat-cow-speaking

Or the cake I got for my son’s 16th birthday:

Bjorn's 16th Birthday Cake

I was giggling all the way home with it.

Okay, and this one:

turtle fly

I really don’t get why this one makes me laugh so hard.  But, who cares.  It doesn’t have where it’s from, but I’m almost positive I got it from themetapicture.com (that place is packed full of hilarious):

funny-bathroom-door-paper-poop-missing

And this one too:

funny-eyelashes-prevention-eye-defense-betrayed

Okay, and one more “I can’t stop laughing . . . even now as I read it for the billionth time”:

funny-cat-monorail-towel-kitten

LOL!  . . . whew.  Oh man. : D

Okay . . . I definitely needed that after all of those darker Pluto posts.  Hurray for laughter!  ❤

What Truly Letting Go Looks Like

My friend Carmen brought up Pluto transits in a comment from yesterday’s post:

Arrrgh. Tell me again about Pluto transiting the ascendant???

I think her first word pretty much sums up Pluto transits.  Hers is going across the ascendant.  Her whole self identity is dying . . . but that’s not all . . . there are the Pluto/Uranus squares that have been happening . . . which have been pounding humanity into the ground.  So . . . if Pluto is going across her ascendant . . . Uranus is aiming somewhere at least near her IC.  Her identity with Pluto . . . her foundation (core self) with Uranus . . . is where this is all hitting in her life.  And omg . . . these transits have not had any mercy on the beautiful soul that is the woman I know as Carmen.

I wrote a reply that was specific to her . . . but I know this is something that we’re all dealing with somewhere in our lives.  I know I’m certainly seeing it in my Facebook feeds from my friends.  This is deep and serious stuff that is happening globally.

While Carmen has been facing the Pluto portion of these squares across her ascendant, I’ve been experiencing the Uranus transit across my ascendant.  Between the two of us, we have the entire cardinal cross covered in our charts, but in different areas . . . which is probably why the universe had us bump into each other.  “Here . . . you two might have something to talk about.  If not now . . . soon.”  O.O

I’m about to throw up (as in show . . . not puke, although it looks like it . . . I puke in heart shapes, what do you do?) one of my visual aids.  It’s showing what part of the maelstrom I’m trying to navigate.

Transiting Uranus Conjunct Ascendant.  Transiting Pluto Square Natal Pluto.  Transiting Pluto Square Ascendant and Transiting Uranus.  Natal Uranus in Scorpio.

Transiting Uranus Conjunct Ascendant. Transiting Pluto Square Natal Pluto. Transiting Pluto Square Ascendant and Transiting Uranus. Natal Uranus in Scorpio.

The green hearts are where those planets currently are in the sky (transiting).  The gold hearts are the same planets, but where they are located in my natal chart.

I’m not even sure where to start.  I listed all the notables in the caption of the picture, so I won’t repeat them here.  But that’s some heavy duty stuff going on.  Pluto in the 10th house . . . oy vey.  I didn’t think I was going to survive Pluto gnashing on my MC several years back (opposing my IC like a boss).  It hit my Neptune/Moon (IC rules moon).

During that time my teenage son attempted suicide.  He swallowed a handful of pills.  I’ll never . . . ever forget that moment in the living room . . . him laying on the floor . . . me holding him in my arms rocking and crying . . . having already screamed at 911 twice to get there faster because my baby was dying.

Remembering my son coming back to consciousness long enough to tell me to not cry . . . that everything was going to be okay . . . and that he loved me . . . that it was getting cold . . . watching the life fade from his eyes . . . and then closing them.

This is an example of a Pluto transit.  Sometimes Pluto is a metaphorical death . . . sometimes it’s actual death.  My son did survive.  But just barely . . . it could have gone either way.

Later that night, as I sat alone in the waiting room wondering whether I was going to be planning a funeral or if life was going to give me another chance to try again . . . I experienced one of Pluto’s main lessons first hand.  I was so far pulled into myself trying to escape what was happening, that I’m surprised I didn’t actually turn inside out.

I was running through every scenario in my head . . . what could I have done differently?  This wasn’t our first trip to the ER.  He had spent a week in the hospital for suicide watch when he was 12.  I educated myself about everything . . . what signs to look for when someone’s depressed . . . I took him to therapists . . . doctors.  I tore myself inside out to be a better mother.

And yet . . . there I was a couple years later.  Ripping myself apart again for failing as his mother.  Huddled in a ball on a waiting room couch, screaming at myself inside . . . asking what I did wrong . . . what did I not do that I should have.  When suddenly something gave way in me.  Everything went quiet inside of me.  A truth had been spoken outside of my screaming . . . but still inside of me.

“There’s nothing you could have done.  You cannot control what another person does.  You have to let go of thinking you can save him.  You have to come to peace with the fact that one day you very well may lose him . . . and that there’s nothing you can do to change it.”

In that moment . . . I let go of trying to keep my son alive . . . not because I didn’t love him . . . but because I don’t have that kind of power and control over another human’s path.  Who am I to say when it is time for him to die?  It’s his life . . . it’s his path . . . not mine.  So that part of me trying to control every aspect of his life in order to “save” him . . . surrendered control to the universe.

That’s when the quiet and peace had flooded me.  That’s when I became aware of a multitude of light beings in my presence.  They had been there all along . . . they were the ones who had communicated that information to me.  It was said with complete compassion . . . they saw how I was suffering . . . but as long as I was closed down and trying to control the situation in any way . . . I was also closed to them . . . I couldn’t receive their comfort and their help.

When I let go . . . I opened to a much larger awareness about life and our place in it.  I saw how much we do in an effort to prevent or stop things that we’re scared of happening.  We don’t even realize we’re doing it.  That’s Pluto.  It’s the places that scare us the most.  It’s the things that we’d do anything . . . absolutely anything . . . to not have happen.  Pluto will hold those things in your face until you finally open your eyes.

The one thing I couldn’t bear to lose in my life was my son.  Any and everything else in life, I could handle.  But from the moment my son was born, I was plagued with nightmares and fears of him dying . . . and I couldn’t handle it.  I couldn’t breathe.  I lived in terror of something happening to him.

So without seeing that I was doing it, I sheltered him . . . smothered him . . . I controlled every aspect of his life in the name of keeping him safe.  And it nearly killed him.  I was absolutely blind to it.  Others would just say to me that I was just being a good mom or a protective mom . . . but nobody ever did something like an intervention.  Because Pluto is not something easily seen or noticed by others or ourselves.

If my son hadn’t tried to kill himself . . . I don’t know that I would have ever seen it on my own.  That’s the fact of the matter.  He didn’t do it to hurt me . . . he did it to make his own hurt inside stop . . . he didn’t understand the pain and he didn’t know what to do about it.  All he knew is that it was too much.  That is also Pluto.  When you feel so absolutely alone in your pain, and you’re so far in the dark that you can’t see any light or hope . . . that is also Pluto.  My son has Pluto in Scorpio.

We both have completely changed our lives since then.  I’m more willing to let him do his own thing.  I am aware every minute of how precious my time is with him . . . so I’m more present when we interact.  We both have put in a lot of years working on getting our defenses down and rebuilding trust between each other.

Every day we become more open and loving and understanding of each other and all our own strange quirks.  I appreciate him for how he is . . . no matter how contrary and sometimes frustrating it is to me.  We’ve learned how to feel through the dark together as a team instead of as competitors.  It’s no longer a competition about who hurts more inside.  It’s a give and take . . . here is my owie . . . here let me help you hug that owie out.

Whenever I find myself falling back into wanting to control him for “his sake” . . . I remember that he came here with his own path and his own purpose and that he needs to find it for himself.  I’m here for support and love.  I’m here to be home base for him when he inevitably falls down in his effort to try and figure out this life thing.  That’s my role as mom.  Not to judge him . . . not to force him against his own (strong) inner will . . . but to mentor him . . . give him guidance.

So . . . yeah . . . this didn’t end up being so much about the stuff I said at the beginning.  Just like Pluto transits . . . sometimes I don’t have control over what decides to come out in my posts.  And I just let it be what it is without apology or trying to change it into what I think it should be.

What The Lord Of The Underworld Has To Say About The Affairs Of The Heart

I was replying to a comment in another post, and found myself in the mood to talk about it a bunch.  It’s in response to a comment from johnsie4 (aka Janelle) who said:

I’m interested to hear more about Pluto in opposition to Asc, one of my kids has this aspect and I’m interested to learn what that might mean for him.  How does it make you feel?

I’m finding that I’m just in the mood to talk about Pluto in general . . . so I’ll begin with Pluto in opposition to the Ascendant . . . but where it ends up is anyone’s guess.

If astrology is not your *thing*, then this post will be beginning with ways in which hidden (in plain sight) power struggles between me and others play themselves out in my life.

Aries Ascendant/Rising in Opposition (180 degrees) to Pluto in Libra in the 7th House.

Aries Ascendant/Rising in Opposition (180 degrees) to Pluto in Libra in the 7th House.

This is a little busy, but it’s to show the full axis of the 1st and 7th house.  I put Pluto in a heart . . . because he needs love too.  (Huh . . . just noticed transiting mars recently went past my natal Pluto . . . no wonder I’m interested in talking about Pluto LOL).

Anyhoo.  How this has shown up in my life.

I tend to trust people fully as soon as I decide I like someone.  I am completely open and honest with them about everything.  I don’t have a weeding out period where someone has to earn my trust before I start divulging things about myself.  This is really stupid of me, because it lets all kinds of unworthy people into my circle of trust that I should not be letting in there.

Others in my life are evasive about themselves.  It’s like pulling teeth to get anyone to say anything about their personal lives.  They have way more information about me before I have hardly anything on them . . . so that gives them a sort of power over me.  And if they misuse it (and most likely they will because it’s rare to find an enlightened Pluto . . . meaning the stuff they do is subconscious and they can’t even see how they do it.) then my life becomes a living hell.

Also, I’m usually excited to share my relationship with everyone.  “Yay!  Look, this is my boyfriend!”  And every.single.time. for one stupid reason or another . . . I’m some big secret in their lives.

One boyfriend told me AFTER we had been seeing each other for a couple of weeks . . . that “Oh btw . . . I’m an active Muslim.  I can’t be seen with you in public or introduce you to my family, otherwise they will pressure me to marry you.  Is that going to be a problem?”  <— THAT . . . is an example of Pluto on the descendant.  (Btw, because my moon is in Sagittarius (Religions/Faith) in the 8th (Intimacy) . . . that also affects my close relationships.)

Another long-term boyfriend from Belfast, Ireland (More Sagittarius Moon 8th house . . . people from all over the globe) who had moved to my area, didn’t want to tell anyone back home about me because divorce had just become legal over there and he was going through a divorce.  You had to prove one of the approved reasons for getting a divorce in order to get one.  His reason was because of her cheating on him.  So . . . he had to be on his high horse and not let anyone know he was dating anyone before the divorce was final, otherwise how was he any better than her?  (It took about 2 years for a divorce to g0 through.)  So for a WHOLE SUMMER, when his two kids and parents came to visit . . . I couldn’t go see him and had to pretend I didn’t have a boyfriend.

It is ALWAYS something.  And I’m ALWAYS understanding.  But over time, it really . . . really wore down my self esteem because in my own subconscious I was being told by these people that I was someone to be ashamed being seen with.  I wasn’t valuable, I wasn’t wanted.  I ALLOWED them to do that.  So by me not speaking up and saying, “Oh HELL NO!”  I just said, “Oh . . . okay . . . I understand.” and put up with way more than I should have.

The hard part (and this is specific to Pluto in Libra) is that they all seem like perfectly sweet men.  You could analyze them up, down, and sideways and you’d never find anything you could put your finger on and say, “Aha!  There’s your flaw!”  And yet . . . a year or so down the road . . . I’d take a look at myself and find that I had fallen a long way.  Miserable, ill, depressed, lifeless.

Also any time I was in a relationship, I could say goodbye to my friends and family until after the relationship because we got swallowed up in our own little world.  There were often issues of jealousy.  I was a possession to be owned.  My every move was controlled or questioned.  I would become isolated and it would become hard to see a way out of the relationship.  After awhile I’d forget that life had been any other way.  When you feel like you’ve been dropped to the bottom of a very deep well and like the walls are closing in on you and you’re all alone, and like things will never change or get better . . . you are experiencing Pluto.

After the umpteenth time of repeating this “dying” process . . . I finally took a break.  An eight year break.  And decided to figure out WTF was going on with me.  I ripped into my psyche to find what it was about me that was causing me to basically invite the same guy into my life over and over.  I left no stone unturned.  I was brutally honest with myself.  I analyzed every scenario from every perspective until things started to clear in my head and make more sense.

I came up with hypothesizes on why I did certain things and what I could do to potentially change it . . . and tried it out in my own life.  Again in a relentless almost obsessed (Pluto) manner.  Eventually I made it down deep enough in myself to where I found my own inner Pluto.  And when I cracked that bad boy open . . . for the first time ever in my life, I began to make REAL progress in changing myself.  I began to feel a sense of peace I had never felt before.  And forgiveness, because I could see myself in all of my past relationships.  And I saw how it’s really us that keeps ourselves prisoner with our own judgments (Libra).

Pluto on the Descendant (or opposition to the Asc), means that relationships will be where your transformation takes place.  It’s through relationships that you’ll experience the death and rebirth of the Phoenix.  It means that eventually . . . if you decide to face your own inner Pluto . . . you will come out of the other end understanding human relations inside and out.  The what, when, where, why, and how of relationships.  You will understand the affairs of the heart.

Keep Going . . . You Don’t Want To Miss This

There is a dream I had back in October that has been tapping me on my shoulder a lot the last couple of weeks.  When I turn around to yell, “What?!” it just stands there and stares at me.  It doesn’t say anything (because that would be weird), but I do get a feeling of please share me.  Then I feel the sum of what is happening on Earth at this time . . . I hear the words that were said at the end of the dream.  Then I feel what can only be described as hearing/feeling a collective prayer . . . a plea . . . and I see in my mind’s eye a sea of faces crying . . . frustrated . . . confused.  All of them so scared inside . . . unsure.

It all feels so big.  Sharing my dream feels so small.

But then I think of all of the times I was in a really bad place in my life . . . and how I’d search the internet trying to find something . . . anything . . . to let me know that I would be okay.  To inspire me to keep trying and keep going.  Often the places I would find the most valuable thing to me, would be some obscure blog post.  Just someone ranting or sharing something about themselves.  Maybe someone just being raw and real with no apologies.  Maybe someone just openly sharing their own fears or heartaches.  Those things would touch me so much that it would cut through my cold and have me sobbing with my whole body.  Those people saved my life and sanity on numerous occasions.

The countless anonymous people who have helped me with their words, will probably never have any idea what they did for me.  I wish I could have told them.  But the thing about being in a deep dark hole, is that you’re unable to gather enough strength to even click a *like* button . . . let alone shout your gratitude to the surface.

For those of you who are stuck down in that deep well . . . it’s for you that I write.  I got lost in my writing groove because I was unconsciously addressing the haters from my past who haunt me, and I was trying to prove myself to them . . . or help them understand me.  That’s not what I want.

The path that has lead me to this moment has been incredible.  It has been spent living in the valley of the shadow of death and chaos.  It has been spent without a voice of my own.

Slowly and surely I have been finding my voice.  Finding the courage to say the things I know inside of me.  And those things aren’t meant for those who would tear me down or try to hold me under water.  They aren’t meant for those who insist on seeing me as anything less than I am.  They are not meant for those who are bent on being offended instead of seeing the innocence in my words.

They are meant for others like me.  They are meant for the ones who have lost themselves.  They are meant for the ones who have lost their own voices.  They are meant for the ones who have been unfairly made to feel like they are worth anything less than they are.  Anyone who has felt unloved and unwanted by life.  They are meant for the ones looking for a light of hope.  The ones looking for a reason to keep going . . . to keep trying.

So yes . . . the feeling I felt when recalling my dream from last October felt big . . . and sharing the dream seems so small in comparison.  But not when I really think about my reasons for wanting to write and share.  Not when it might possibly reach the eyes of that one person who is desperately searching the internet to find something . . . anything . . . to help them not sink deeper into the darkness.  From that perspective, it becomes as big as my feeling of the collective who is crying out for help.

So when the dream tapped me on the shoulder this morning, I said, “Okay.  I will share it.”

This is from my dream journal dated Oct. 14, 2013:

I was in an ethereal type place.  I dreamt that a bunch of monkeys came in the house I was in.  One ran up to me.  When I went to pick him up, he was actually a little boy.  His left eye was a milky white, but not quite all of it.

He said his name was Tommy.  I said my name was Jennifer.  When I said it, the boy looked at some others there, and they nodded their head as if to say just go along with it.  They also said something about me being booked up for months out.  I said if I am, then why am I still working (referring to my current job).  I just got more confused looks like it had nothing to do with what they were talking about. 

So I started talking with the boy.  I told him that his eye was pretty cool.  He said that he was trying to make it so I would see it (trying to bring attention to it).  He very openly said that it was from trying to commit suicide.  Something about trying to eat cupboard food.

I kept looking him in the eyes, and doing a focused zoomed in thing that seemed to make the moment more surreal.  In that moment, the dream became more real than real life.  “Vivid” and “lucid” aspire to be that clear and present.

I said, “There is something special happening on Earth right now.  I know it’s hard, but you don’t want to miss it.”

We were walking along, and there was one other person walking with us.  Something interrupted us.  Then I found myself repeating to him, “There is something special happening on Earth.” 

The emphasizes in the dream was the message.  The boy who tried to commit suicide  . . . and me trying to strongly impress in him that I knew how hard it was . . . but he needed to trust me when I said that he did not want to miss it.  When I was talking with him . . . I felt so deeply in me . . . “don’t give up . . . hold on a little longer . . . this is something you really want . . . have faith and hold on a little longer . . . it’s going to be okay.”

I was aware of all of my own pain and struggle in my current life . . . I knew personally how hard it was.  But even bigger in feeling, was the understanding of what was really happening in the background.  That what was currently in the process of unfolding on Earth made all of the pain and struggle so small and powerless in comparison.  And strangely . . . there was even a moment of all of us knowing that we would all be struggling at this point in the process . . . and that we would need a nudge or reminder to keep going.

You can do it.  Keep going.

The sky filled with love.

The sky filled with love.

Before I Get To Goofy Dork, I Need To Make A Quick Stop At The Local Abyss

This is more or less a continuation of yesterday’s post, Wanting To Be A Graceful Swan, Destined To Be A Goofy Dork, where I’m looking to my natal chart to help me re-gather the pieces of myself and remember who I am again.

I’m currently bobbing in and out of a Neptunian blanket of fog, going from clarity and renewal to  . . . wait . . . what was I doing?  Where am I?

The part of my chart that poked it’s head out today . . . once I saw it, it’s almost embarrassing for me that it wasn’t the first thing I was researching.  And yet, when I think back to when I first began this exercise . . . it’s almost like this part of my chart didn’t exist.  Even in my memory, that area is *blanked out* as if it didn’t exist.  Which is actually very indicative of what’s going on there.

Before I continue, here’s my full chart again (but with an additional planet that is central to my post today):

Jenn's Natal Chart

Jenn’s Natal Chart

I don’t know if you noticed, but there is a party happening in my first house.  In the days when I was first learning astrology and mingling with the natives, people’s response to my first house was “Wow!” or “OMG, Look at that 1st house!”  And then that would be it.  Like it was self-explanatory.  I would keep staring at them with wide-eyed wonder and hopeful eyebrows raised, trying to say with my face  ” . . . AND?”  When that failed, I would just come out and say exasperated, “What does that mean?!”

It was usually just a quick, generic sentence like “Oh, you’re . . . fast.”  “You’re a go-getter.”  . . . O.o  What?  That didn’t match their initial response at all.  I would never, ever say “OMG!” to something so lame.  It made me want to hit my head against the wall (Aries-much?) and well . . . it touched on something so deep and owie in me.  Something that I had no hope at the time in articulating. I was only starting to become aware that this *thing* existed.  This *something* that made up a huge part of my existence that I couldn’t see . . . I couldn’t hear . . . I had absolutely no way to label it or describe it.

All I really knew was that their reaction to my first house caused a split second of elevated awareness in me and a feeling of familiarity and something that I had known and forgotten.  And something that I was missing.  Something that I had lost and forgot that I lost.  Something that I ached for with every molecule of my entire being.  In that moment, it wouldn’t have been beneath me to burst into sobbing tears and begging somebody, anybody to help me.  To please help me, something . . . some . . . I don’t know what it is but I needed someone’s help.

I would have too . . . except that my instinct (Aries, 1st house, Mars) to protect myself would get triggered, and of the fight, flight, or freeze . . . my defense of choice was to freeze.  I would lock up in myself.  I was absolutely unable to communicate outside of myself.  I went into “ghost” mode . . . where I would become absolutely invisible.  I never tested it, but I felt very sure that I could have done anything I wanted to and not only would nobody notice, they wouldn’t even remember that I had been there in the first place.  This went far beyond just feeling invisible.  I may have not understood what was going on with me, but if there was one thing I understood. . . it was instinctual awareness . . . and I was.not. registering in anyone’s awareness whenever I went into freeze/ghost mode.

A quick side note . . . I’m having an incredibly hard time staying connected to my feelings while I write this . . . so my post may start having a *colder* feeling to it than normal.  I’m having to exert a lot of will power to stay conscious and aware while I write.  I’m nearly operating on survival instinct alone.  It has everything to do with the topic.  It has everything to do with my 1st house.  It’s the affect the 1st house has on me that you’re witnessing for yourself first hand.  In fact, it’s my hope that bringing all of this to light will help me reconnect to my 1st house.  The house of Self.  The house I lose and *blank out* the most in my entire chart.  My house of Ghost.

The attendee list for my 1st house includes Eris rising, Venus, Mars, South Node in Aries and Chiron, Sedna, and Mercury in Taurus.  Of that entourage, Venus, Mars, South Node, Chiron, & Sedna are conjunct.  That is cray cray.

What I know now but couldn’t articulate (Mercury) then, was that I wasn’t even understanding the concept of the 1st house.  I had no comprehension of what it meant.  I would read about Aries and it would say things like pioneer, leader, warrior.  But . . . what does that mean?!?  I have a 1st house full of warrior?  What.does.that.mean?  What does that look like in my everyday life?  When am I being Aries in my life?  What is something an Aries might say?  How is it different from something every other sign might say or do?  I couldn’t see it!  It was literally a blank spot in my awareness.

Which . . . is kind of something that doesn’t often get brought up about Aries and 1st house . . . it’s often something that is such a part of us that you can’t see it.  Like when you forget that you put your glasses on top of your head.  You tear the place apart looking for your glasses.  Where are my bleeping glasses?  When someone mercifully points out that they’re on your head, you at once feel both relief and also like a complete idiot.  That’s how I experience Aries.  I also experience it like it’s some big secret that everyone else gets except me.  Someone commenting on my previous post who has Mercury in Aries made a reference to this.  I cannot stress how much Aries does NOT feel to the native, the way that everyone describes and talks about Aries.

In the astrology community, there is a lot of smack talk given about Aries.  The impression I got from people when I was in student mode . . . and how I now understand it for myself . . . are two completely different things.  And it actually kind of pisses me off how people bad mouth and represent that sign like they do.  If you knew what it was like to live in Aries skin, you would shut your mouth and speak more kindly.  Just because Aries talks about themselves, does not mean they are selfish . . . and just because Libra speaks about others, doesn’t mean they are selfless.

Yes, I have other things at work in my 1st house that influences my feeling on this.  But before I lose my train of thought, how I used to always experience Aries is that I couldn’t see me.  It’s like looking in the mirror and seeing no reflection.  I talk about myself in an effort to see me.  All I know is others.  I know all about other people and why they do what they do, what makes people tick and the many different ways they relate to each other in the many different scenarios of life . . . but I have no context or reference of how I fit into ANY of it because I can’t see me (me being the forgotten glasses on top of my head).  I’ve been accused of being insensitive, by the very people who sit there and laugh with each other over how unaware Aries are about other people.  Do you know how hurtful that is?  My entire life has been focused on understanding others . . . and I’m being made fun of by others right in front of my face like my Aries makes me deaf or something.

Aries isn’t retarded.  Aries isn’t even being oblivious to others.  Aries needs help and the reflection from others in order to see themselves, in order to give them context and understand their place in existence.  They are so up close and personal with Self, they can’t see it.  Aries is the new spark of life . . . it’s the time in life when we’re a baby.  Why would you sit there and laugh and make fun of a baby needing your help to understand its place in the world?

Now seems like a good time to bring up what is affecting my understanding of 1st house & Aries. (Also, I’d like to point out my own diversion tactic . . . I’m heading into owie territory so I’ve been skating around it.  4 paragraphs of skating around it.  This is one of my forms of avoidance.  I call myself out on things like this to keep myself on the straight and narrow.  I don’t want my own bullshit to be what stops me from getting through.)

Right now, I’m trying to relax my tensed body, and breathe more oxygen into my body in an effort to move out of fight, flight, or freeze mode.

* * *

 Okay . . . so I’ll start with my Chiron:

Chiron in Taurus in 1st House.

Chiron in Taurus in 1st House.

Chiron is our deepest wound.  The short of it being in my 1st house, is that it will most likely lead to a journey of self-discovery.  What Astrology Study had to say about Chiron in general:

Chiron in the natal chart represents our “deepest wound”. It shows an area of our lives and part of our psyches in which we lack self-esteem or even self-respect and tend to overcompensate as a result. We tend to give and give and give in these areas of life, until we learn to build our confidence. Chiron represents insecurity, guilt, and, to some degree, subservience. We feel a seemingly endless need to prove ourselves in these areas of life, until we learn that proving ourselves simply never works! In fact, it ends up making us feel even more ineffective.

Specifically about Chiron in the 1st house:

Possibly, there were restrictions in early childhood that will have had the effect on you of either retreating into yourself or having to fight to be noticed. There will be a need to find personal meaning in existence. Some will do this by being overly aggressive, others by withdrawing.

I obviously tend towards the withdrawing part.  I chose this site because it also mentioned Chiron-Venus & Chiron-Mars contacts . . . which since I have those two conjunct Chiron, this gives me additional understanding.  For Chiron-Venus:

With Chiron-Venus aspects, there is a tendency to give, and give, and give again in close personal and love relationships, and a tremendous fear of rejection from a lover. No matter how much these people do for a partner, they never feel it is enough. Early experiences of rejection or other problem relationships helps these people to learn a tremendous amount about love and relationships, and they can easily be turned to for very insightful advice about human interactions. Applying this wisdom on a personal level is the challenge, as Chiron-Venus people need to first heal their own deep fears of not being “good enough”. They need to learn to love themselves and to make sure their partners are meeting them halfway. They might also be attracted to partners who need help, but with the hard aspects, it might be hard to get back the same kind of attention or appreciation.

Ouch.  That’s hitting a little close to home . . . ok . . . now Chiron-Mars:

Asking for what we want, or self-assertiveness, is the main challenge for people with Chiron-Mars aspects. They might find themselves apologizing after an “outburst” of anger, self-assertion, or statement of desire–somehow feeling ashamed. The Mars expression can be unusual and come across as outbursts because of the lack of confidence in the validity of their desires or whether their personal desires deserve to be met. There can also be some physical clumsiness or awkwardness. The main challenge for Chiron-Mars people is to learn to accept their own desires and feelings of anger as valid so that when they do express them, they express them naturally and with confidence.

My owies are definitely being stirred up by reading this.  I’m finding it very hard to communicate at all . . . but yes . . . I’m constantly apologizing for any kind of outburst at all.  My mars & venus are so repressed in me right now after getting triggered from my breakup in November.  Hence the forgetting of myself again . . . and my attempt right now of trying to reclaim them.

And I feel my Chiron strongly in me.  I know it’s referred to as our deepest wound . . . but there is actually something I feel even deeper than my Chiron . . . I’m starting to tear up just at mentioning it . . . and that is Sedna.  It feels like where the feeling of Chiron stops in my body . . . Sedna (tied to Chiron) is thrown down even further below into oblivion like a lost anchor.  The feeling of Sedna in me . . . makes me WISH I was only feeling Chiron.  I look forward to being up high enough to only feel Chiron.

Sedna in Taurus in 1st house

Sedna in Taurus in 1st house

Sedna is relatively new to the astrology scene . . . but thank goodness she showed up . . . because otherwise I don’t think I would have ever gotten at that incredible ache I started to become aware of all those years ago.  The best description I’ve come across that fits how I feel Sedna, is that she is connected to the part of ourselves that we sacrificed in order to survive.  Sedna’s story is, as Darkstar Astrology puts it, “quite horrifying”.

And so I come to the crux on which my whole life seems to rest . . . she is connected and anchored to my Chiron . . . my Mars . . . and my Venus.  These are the things I sacrificed and sent to the bottom of the ocean in order to survive my childhood.  I know it’s probably hard to imagine what that means or feels like to have your Venus and Mars completely ripped from your awareness.  I’m fighting with my feelings right now, so I’ll share some things from a couple of sites while I work through it.

At Darkstar Astrology (there is good version of the story of Sedna at the link):

“The encounter with what has been lost, drowned out, or frozen long ago… In other words, our own ‘Ice Age’: the wounds in the soul caused by the impatience, condemnation, dismissal or anger of the father; the living hell of unresolved outrage; the violence of hardship where we cut off from what is desperate and vulnerable in ourselves or others in order to survive. “ [Melanie Reinhart, in her article “The Goddess of the Frozen Waters.”]

“Sedna swims into your life to tell you to stop being a victim. The way to wholeness is to recognize how you’ve been caught up in and are living the victim archetype, then to change the pattern by empowering yourself.

“The goddess Sedna teaches us that we must delve into the dark, cold places that we fear most if we are to find the riches that rest there. Sedna reminds us that, in spite of all our infirmities and our foolish mistakes, we are still worthy of love and respect and have every right to expect, and even demand, that others treat us well” [Goddess Gift]

And from Lynn Koiner

“And, on another level, I wonder if Sedna is connected with sacrificing a part of ourselves so that we can survive (throwing our Sedna into the ocean), and how we are especially responsible to “comb her hair”, since we (the father) put her deep in the ocean.”

For me, these words unlocked the key to the transformational process of Sedna.  I will add that the part of yourself that you sacrifice, split off and repress will linger deep in our subconscious, acting as a driving force, little known to our consciousness, but demanding our attention.  Just as the Inuit must go to the ocean’s depths and “comb Sedna’s hair,” we must make that Transformational Journey and tend to these  subconscious emotions, desires and memories.  If we do not, these issues will drive our lives in ways that are destructive and frustrating.

Yes . . . now I’m starting to remember.  It also explains my recent dream regarding a reference to the “goddess of the abyss”.  I’ve done this process before.

I find my way back out by remembering how it feels to be loved by getting into a state of deep meditation . . . and remembering how it feels to be loved, by feeling love for myself like another person might feel for their lover.  I allow it to feel true in my body using imagination and will.  I keep calling the feeling of being loved back to me and keep it in my awareness for as long as possible.  I convince myself that I believe it, I believe it fully.  I let it become my whole reality.  Even with eyes closed, everything begins to get brighter like someone was turning a bunch of lights on in the room around me.  When it reaches a point where it’s surrounding my whole being, and I don’t have to exert as much energy to stay in that space . . . I then delicately remove my strands of consciousness that I used to bring me closer to it. . . and then I surrender myself to it . . . and it brings me back from the bottom of the abyss and back to my existence of light and laughter.

All of my pain, struggle, and hardship gives way to peace and love.  The days of pain and suffering fade into the distance and bother me no more.

It involves seeing the most heart-breaking thing you can imagine . . . and seeing how you did it, even if it was for a good reason such as survival . . . the parts you threw in need you to see that it was you that did it, before they are willing to trust you again and return with you to the surface.  Not to hurt or punish you . . . but because that *is* the reconnecting process.  That moment when you stop trying to run from yourself and you completely drop your guard and just accept the truth without blame or judgment . . . just the raw honest to god truth of the situation . . . it makes the reconnecting process possible.  It is complete humility and surrender to something much bigger than you.  It’s when you get out of your own way, and open the space within you to allow divinity through so that you can be healed and brought back to the place where you really belong.

Wanting To Be A Graceful Swan, Destined To Be A Goofy Dork.

I was recently doing searches on various aspects of my birth chart because I’ve lost sight of who I am again.

Normally this might be something I’d talk to a close friend about . . . but right now, that friend is you.  This space is the only medium I have in my life right now to talk things out.

But hey, I have Uranus (friends, internet, unconventional) in my 7th house (relationships) . . . so maybe this is exactly how it’s supposed to be for me.

Over and over again I am reminded in my life that there is how I think things are supposed to be . . . and then there are how things just are.

Anyways . . . I like visual aids, so here’s a look at my birth chart (and it’s okay if you don’t know astrology . . . it’s my feeling that even just seeing the geometry and symbols gives us information, even if at a subconscious level).  If you click on it you should be able to see the mega huge version of it.  (If you’re looking for a great resource for astrology, or even just to have the ability to do a chart without having to pay money . . . www.astro.com is *the* best place I have found online.)

Jenn's Birth Chart

Jenn’s Birth Chart

It will never fail to amaze me how looking at a birth chart is looking at a snapshot of the heavens at the time and location of a person’s birth . . . and how it is a blueprint of who we are and what our plan was for the time we are here.  As above . . . so below.

Anyways, I first started my search with my (moon’s) North Node, which is in Libra in the 7th house.

North Node in Libra in the 7th house.

North Node in Libra in the 7th house.

One place I looked, True Node.org, had a lot of useful information.  Some of it I wasn’t quite on board with, but that helped me actively use my discernment in what I felt to be true for myself vs. how another person viewed/interpreted similar things that I do . . . without being defensive about it.  And also for me to keep in mind, that there are other things in my chart that change how it is expressed in me.

Here’s what stood out most for me:

You are here in this lifetime to learn to give with the whole heart, asking nothing of others in return.

. . .

Some will perceive you as disloyal, since you are so reluctant to invest in your relationships.  However, as you grow in your spiritual development, you will find within yourself an amazing ability to give self-confidence to others.

. . .

an ability to “give others the will where there was none” and to make them aware of their own self-worth

These are the things I felt touch me deep inside and reading them easily make me cry in a kind of relief . . . so I know they are touching on something true and important to me.

When I’ve forgotten who I am . . . this is the kind of process I go through to help piece myself back together until a bigger picture emerges and I’m able to start remembering on my own.

One of the things I feel when reading these sentences, is a raw heartbreaking overwhelming humbleness at the idea that I could affect another human being in that way.  Which makes me painfully aware of what I’ve been feeling about my own self worth.  How lately, I haven’t been feeling like I have anything of value to offer another person.  I know it’s not true, but I can’t seem to remember what it is I have.

So I kept searching to see what other clues I could find.  Next was on my Neptune/Moon conjunction.

Neptune (9th house) and Moon (8th house) conjunction in Sagittarius.

Neptune (9th house) and Moon (8th house) conjunction in Sagittarius.

This is where my deep feelers come from.  This is why I cry like a person at a funeral when I witness something that feels so profound or so beautiful.  This is what brings me to my knees when I hear a violin playing just the right haunting chords.  It’s where I feel (moon) both the beauty and sorrow of the world and life from a spacecraft view.  This is also where I get incredibly confused in my feelings and who I am separate from others whenever I become emotionally stressed.

The best place I found that describes the Neptune/Moon conjunction, is at The Chirotic Journal.  It’s a longer quote . . . but I feel it’s necessary in order to effectively understand what it means to have this configuration (or similar).

Imagine this scenario: someone you know has come to see you and on their way over they have got stuck in traffic, had an argument with a co-worker on the phone and discovered that their husband spent the housekeeping on a hooker, then they call in at your house, and actually, they like you very much and just want to hang out for a while so they don’t mention any of that bad stuff, but inside they are angry, upset, hurt and frustrated, as would only be natural for anyone who had experienced such a frustrating and upsetting set of circumstances. For most, this visitor would appear agitated perhaps, maybe a little off and flat and for anyone without Moon conjunct Neptune it wouldn’t represent much of a blip on their personal radar, off their friend would toddle, and they might think to themselves “hmm, they seemed a little odd today, no matter”, and they would carry on about their business and probably forget all about it.

Not so for Moon conjunct Neptune. Not by a long chalk.

For anyone with Moon conjunct Neptune, they can feel the anger, resentment and frustration from their friend almost as a physical force in the room. The hostility would be profoundly uncomfortable, they feel so uncomfortable in fact that they may even begin to physically sweat, or shake, or feel a little wan and pale. And even before their friend was out the door they will already be running through the list of all possible misdemeanours they could possibly have committed to have caused such an upset, because it is entirely possible that their friend is angry because of something they have done, or said, or not said, or not done, or implied, or inferred or failed to anticipate.

It’s for this reason I need lots of time alone.  It’s also the source of many of my oddities, all of which are hard for me to explain or describe because it just doesn’t make sense in practical down-to-earth terms.  It’s stuff that only makes sense to someone (without this or a similar configuration in their chart) when they’re having a religious experience or moment of ecstatic bliss.  Or when faced with larger than life events, such as when faced with the death of a loved one and they bring the whole meaning of life into question.  In those moments . . . the things I feel every day of my life . . . would then have more context and make more sense to them.

Next I decided to look at the aspect on my chart that is in opposition (180 degrees) from my Neptune/Moon, which is my Jupiter/Sun.  It’s crucial that I understand this other side because it’s my counter-balance.  Until I come to peace with both, I will swing wildly from one to the other.  I have to reconcile both sides (and all 4 of the gigantic influences) inside of me.

Sun and Jupiter conjunction in 2nd house in Gemini.

Sun and Jupiter conjunction in 2nd house in Gemini.

The things that came up in my search wavered from one end of the spectrum to the other as far as how people chose to see this combination.  Here are some samples:

From Sasstrology (and specifically about having a partner who has Sun/Jupiter aspect . . . apparently I’m a handful.)

When ego (Sun) is united with the planet of expansion and philosophy (Jupiter), it creates a larger-than-life personality. Sun/Jupiter is a highly intelligent, optimistic partner. But when his sense of self gets too big, is there room for another person in the relationship?

Jupiter’s full-on influence quadruples the Sun’s energy.

I *have* wondered this myself.  I understand at some level that I’m *a lot*.  I can get so frustrated with myself.  I want to be who I am without overwhelming or scaring people off.  But I don’t know how to just “kind of” be me.  It’s like asking an atomic bomb to “bring it down a notch”.  How?  🙂

From the site My Astrology Book:

You have brought strong and powerful spiritual energy into this world.  You’re very ethical, vital, physically protected, and have much wisdom to share with others.  You’re optimistic, philosophical, generous to a fault, buoyant, love to travel, and will probably do so, to places far from home. 

Okay . . . that seems like a little more down to Earth.  But it’s not really getting at the bigness of the energy.

MoonPluto Astrology says with the Sun/Jupiter configuration:

People forget sometimes that Sagittarius is the sign of prophecy and Jupiter in Gemini sitting with the Sun (YOU) is… to quote a Facebook friend of mine, the intensity and relentlessness of 1,000 white hot suns.

There we go . . . 1,000 white hot suns.  Now I feel like we’re on the same page.  That’s the level at which I’m having to consciously work with and keep under control at all times.  If I don’t, my physical body (2nd house) starts paying the price for it.  So I’m always in flux trying to keep myself healthy by not keeping all of that repressed in me . . . and also with not letting it all out and frying everyone within a 100,000 mile radius to a burnt crisp.  Cuz . . . I mean . . . I deeply *care* about you guys.  My Moon/Neptune is absolutely horrified at what my Sun/Jupiter is capable of.

So the ping pong game that often plays out on this axis/opposition of my chart looks something like this:  Supernova Superstar! —> You Monster!  How could you be so insensitive! {sob uncontrollably} –> I’m super sorry.  I’m a pathetic, self-centered jackass. –> Oh . . . it’s okay . . . I know you didn’t mean it. –> Really?  –>  Sure!  You’re not so bad.  I love you!  –> Supernova Superstar!

This is mostly internal . . . because I have another aspect playing out in my chart that isn’t so fond of my Sun/Jupiter.  And that is my . . . wait for it . . . Saturn in Leo in the 5th house.  (dun Dun DUN!!)

Saturn in Leo in the 5th house.

Saturn in Leo in the 5th house.

I *am* grateful for Saturn, because he helps anchor my Neptune/Moon and keeps me from totally floating off into space.  This is where I gain discipline, strength, and focus if I put in the hard work.  But it’s in the sign and house of FUN!  Noooooooo!

I liked what Night Sky wrote about Saturn in Leo.

Under Leo, Saturn is brought into the spotlight, into the limelight and is forced into doing something that Saturn abhors generally, and that is being the centre of attention and being “fun”.

Bah, Humbug!

In this position, Saturn is forced into showing courage, spontaneity, exuberance and love of life. The result is often a straight jacket.

LOL.  But seriously,

When in terms and face though, and the essential debility of this placement is reduced somewhat, Saturn´s serious and no-nonsense face is a beautiful blend with Solar energy resulting in an old and mature soul acting through an innocent and childlike Leo.

That’s a beautiful sentiment . . . but here’s the reality of it:

The detrimental nature of Saturn in Leo almost always guarantees the humiliation of Saturn in any kind of endeavour in which he tries to act out his original and melancholic nature, for in doing so the fire of Leo will burn away all careful planning, all responsibility and wreak havoc. But for the Saturn who acts out his inner child, who does what Leo tells him and tries to be “fun” it seems as if great respect and honour… those so desired Saturnine gifts are thrown upon him. It is funny that this Saturn although repressed and wearing a straight jacket when he does take to the stage, is so showered with affection and admiration for doing it. But that is the nature of essentially debilitated planets, they are asked to do something they don´t like.

Ack.  Okay.  For some reason this has me tearing up.  {Stop it!  Stop crying! God you are so embarrassing sometimes.} <— says my Saturn in Leo/5th house to my Neptune/Moon.

Guaranteed humiliation when I try to be myself around others.  Yes.  1,000 white hot suns yes.  My Gemini and Sagittarius want to be in love with life and people.  They want to bring joy and laughter to everyone.  And then there’s Saturn with a leash on both of them saying, “NO!”

This is Saturn in Leo's response to Moon/Neptune in Sagittarius.

This is Saturn in Leo’s response to Moon/Neptune in Sagittarius.

I hate and fear attention.  I.despise.it.  It baffles me that there are people who want to be famous.  WHY!?  Why would you do that on purpose?!  But the forces that burn and bubble under my surface, demand to be let out . . . and that is inevitably going to bring attention to me. (godbleepitybleepingbleep!!)  So I most definitely will come crashing through that stage in a straightjacket, because it’s both something I hate and something that comes with just being who I am.  I want to be all noble, poised, and magnificent . . . but do this instead:

That's about as graceful as I get.

That’s about as graceful as I get.

So . . . that’s as far as I got in my search.  When I’m in a healthier space, I can handle way more information than that at a time . . . so that is another indicator for myself to take it easy and to continue to rest.  But doing this helped.  It felt good to share this with you.  (But don’t tell Saturn.)

{Continued in Before I Get To Goofy Dork, I Need To Make A Quick Stop At The Local Abyss }

Consciously Walking Between The Worlds

I have noticed lately that if I have my guard up at all, I start becoming incredibly sick almost instantly.  As soon as I drop it . . . insta-better.  It’s like a light switch in myself that I’m learning how to have conscious control over.  A bit like trying to learn how to wiggle your ears without moving any other part of your body.  A little weird, but so worth it.

When I feel scared or uncertain for extended periods of time, I tend to close up or put up a defense.  And while this did a great job of protecting me when I was younger, it’s now become a hindrance.

Ways that I know for myself that I’m operating with my guard up:

  • I feel alone and isolated from everyone else.
  • I feel colder and more cynical about life in general.
  • I can’t see the bigger picture
  • I can’t enjoy anything.  Everything gives me anxiety.  I don’t feel okay in my own skin.
  • I become hyper-sensitive to everything, allergies go berserk.
  • I start to feel exhausted in body and soul, and like I’m not going to make it to the “finish line”.
  • I can’t feel my emotions.  I’m intellectually aware of my emotions, but I can’t feel them in my body.
  • Life begins to lose meaning and I don’t feel like I have a purpose.
  • Comprehension skills go to hell.  My thoughts become disordered and disconnected.  Everything feels confusing and complicated.
  • I become paranoid/scared, and feel like the world and everyone in it thinks I’m a terrible person.
  • Insincere “love and light” comments make me feel violent.
  • When someone tries to force my attention away from me, a temper tantrum tries to happen.
  • The radius of my awareness is kept very close to me.  I’m trying to keep myself small so that no one notices me and potentially hurts me while I’m down and not able to defend myself.
  • I am only able to do the bare minimum required to get through the day.
  • I don’t feel like I *get* or can handle life.
  • An increased tendency to avoid things that I know I need to deal with.
  • Every little solitary thing I have to do in a day, becomes a HUGE deal.  Nothing seems to go smoothly, everything feels forced.
  • It’s hard to be in public at all, and I can’t hold conversations with anyone.
  • My self-confidence plummets.
  • I am unable to be present in the moment.  I’m not grounded in my body.
  • I have no desire to dance . . . not even alone in my room.
  • I don’t have the depth of air and strength to sing along with my music in my car.
  • I am unable to be creative.
  • I have no inspiration.

Physical symptoms:

  • My stomach cramps/tightens. (Upper half of my body feels separate from my lower half.)
  • Weak all over.
  • Nauseous
  • My throat feels like it’s trying to close, almost like it’s swelling from an allergic reaction.  Sometimes gets sore.
  • I start losing lots of hair.
  • One or both kidneys start to ache.
  • Zero.Libido.
  • Pain in my lower spine and tailbone that becomes intolerable.
  • My toes in my left foot start to tense and flex and hurt in general.
  • Difficulties in going to the bathroom.
  • Monthly cycle becomes hell on earth.
  • Weight gain even though I haven’t changed my diet.
  • My lower jaw tenses to the point of being painful.

I’m sure I’ve missed things, but that’s more than enough.  The fascinating part, is that they all disappear when I consciously work on dropping my guard.  It’s hard for me to define exactly what I mean when I say dropping my guard.  You could also say that it’s what people mean when they say that you are *opened* or *closed*.

The best way I know how to say it for now, is that one is living life through the perception filter of fear . . . and one is living life through the perception filter of love.  One is walking through life feeling inside like everyone hates or want to hurts you . . . and the other is walking through life feeling inside like everyone is a friend.

One is walking through life afraid of all the terrible things that might happen . . . and the other is walking through life excited about all the great things that might happen.

One is thinking that the details are all of existence . . . and the other is seeing all of existence in the details.

One is being dead before you die . . . and the other is making the decision to *want* to be here in life and coming to peace with it.  Quit trying to check out, escape, or wait for it to be how you want it before you’ll agree to engage in it.

If I have to clean the kitty litter . . . I can do it with my body all tightened up, and bitch and complain about it the whole time I’m doing it.  Squeeze myself small, trying to pretend I’m not actually standing there scooping up cat poop.  <— That’s an example of how we live life closed, small, shut down.  It has a physical effect on our body.  Do it over a lifetime . . . and cleaning the kitty litter just might be the death of you.

I love my kitties.  My kitties need the litter box.  I am their caretaker.  Therefore, it’s my responsibility to take care of it.  I am happy to.  I love having them in my life, and they’ve brought 6+ years and counting of total snuggle happiness into my life.  I *choose* to let myself feel joy in doing that for them.  It is my pleasure.  I had to practice it a bajillion times consciously before it became my natural response . . . but I did it.  And now my body is open and receptive to that task.  I don’t shut down and go dark in myself while I’m doing it.  I’m present and open while I do it.  I allow the smell to be there without shrinking in disgust.  It is what it is.  It’s a necessity of life.  It’s a part of experiencing life in a physical body, why do we make such a huge deal about it?

When I’m being vigilant and true to myself . . . I am like this in ALL of my household chores.  I enjoy taking my time being in the moment while vacuuming.  I might sing while I do it.  I might dance.  I let my imagination go free.  Who says we have to do those things all stressed out and upset?  That’s silly.  It’s a part of being here.  What would happen if kids grew up watching their parents clean, nurture, and take care of the home with such happiness and joy?  They would naturally want to help and be a part of it.  Plus, the house would literally be filled with love.  No matter where you went in the house, it would be oozing with love and care.

When things like cleaning my house became fun and joyful . . . a whole new world opened up in my life.  I quit dreading and trying to avoid life.  My health . . . which was pretty bad . . . completely turned around.  Instead of tightening my body trying to disappear and pretend like I wasn’t there or like it wasn’t happening . . . I let go and expanded my awareness so that I was always present . . . even in the face of cat poop.

So that’s what I mean by having my defense or guard up  – resisting or going against life . . . and dropping my guard – opening up to life and participating.  Not hiding from life and everything in it.

Since this post is already monstrous . . . here’s another list of some of the things I experience when I drop my guard.

How I feel when I drop my guard (or at least starting to drop it) :

  • Feeling summed up in one sentence: The sun comes back out.
  • I *almost* feel like I’m giving up, but instead of collapsing in on myself, I expand my awareness while staying consciously aware and letting it take me where ever it is I need to be in order to feel better, and then it slides into a surrender of what is . . . and I feel inside like I’m falling into love.  Sinking into a big warm pink and golden fluffy cotton candy clouds that soothe my entire body and being with acceptance and love.
  • I enjoy every single thing I’m doing. Everything becomes fun and a piece of cake. (yum.cake.)
  • My head feels completely clear, I can see whatever situation I’m dealing with inside out and upside down with clarity and ease.
  • All of the aches and pains leave my body . . . I start to feel weightless.
  • I start to hum or sing and/or dance without being self-conscious about it.  It just feels like the most natural thing to be doing in that moment.
  • I feel all of my emotions deeply within myself.  I call it “feeling with my whole heart”, because that’s how it feels to me when it’s happening.  All of the emotions . . . good or bad . . . feel good to have in this place.  It feels right.  It feels supported.
  • I feel at ease and like there’s no need to rush anything . . . ever.  In that space, I get about ten times the things done that I normally do in the same time frame, and with zero stress.  I call this magic.
  • I am fully aware at all times what is most important in that moment and what can wait.  I’m able to keep shifting priorities around in real-time with next to no effort.
  • My awareness feels like it’s all encompassing . . . it feels like it is everywhere and nowhere at the same time.  Everything feels open and full of opportunities and possibilities.
  • I feel an incredible warmth and love for every person I come in contact with, as well as humanity in general.  I feel incredible love and gratitude for each person just for existing.  It is a deep and genuine feeling.  It makes me want to cry actual tears of joy and pride . . . for . . . I don’t know . . . showing up?  I guess for showing up to life . . . for being born here at this time in our history . . . it’s very difficult to express this incredibly deep and yet insanely expansive feeling that just starts filling up my whole being.
  • I have no desire in me to try and change anyone.  I feel very safe and secure in myself and I’m okay with other people being however they are in that moment too, and zero feeling of needing to judge them.
  • I feel at peace inside.
  • Insight, visions, clarity, information, connections, ideas, inspirations, solutions, etc. become a continuous river flowing through me that I’m able to tap into at any moment for anything that may be needed.
  • I feel fully capable and confident in being able to handle whatever life throws my way.
  • My whole body feels very young again and like someone oiled all of my joints.
  • I can easily breathe fully and deeply.
  • I lose my weight almost overnight, even with no diet change.
  • I have tons of energy.
  • I wake up feeling excited about what new adventures life will bring me for that day.  What new thing will I find out?  What new idea will I have?  What new experience will I have?
  • I start becoming inspired with things that might be helpful for others.  I start seeing all kinds of possibilities of what I could do with my life that I couldn’t even begin to imagine previously.
  • I can’t wait to be around other people.
  • I’m not embarrassed about a single thing about myself or how I am in private or public.  The things I do arise from such joy that I just don’t care what someone else is thinking about it.  I become “Me” out loud and I feel like I have no choice but to be that.  The best thing another person could do with me in that moment, is to shamelessly join me in my ridiculousness.  If they have the courage and heart to do that . . . they automatically have my full love and affection.
  • I laugh.  A lot.  And loudly.
  • I love doing new things.
  • I lose all my fear of public speaking.
  • I’m able to be fully emotionally present for others, especially when dealing emotionally with things like death/afterlife . . . both physical and symbolic (life transformations).  I am very comfortable in that space, even in my joy.
  • It feels like everything around me literally brightens . . . and starts to *sparkle*.
  • I feel warm, loved, and fully accepted by life.  I want everyone to feel that way too.

It is possible to consciously move between these states of mind.  I’ve done it.  I do it.  I still teeter.  Things happen, I fall off the horse. . . . but I always find my way back because that’s a part of who I am.  Figuring all these things out, learning, practicing, determination, persistence, strong will, love, patience . . . helped show me who I am.  I didn’t let others decide for me who I am or what I need to do or be . . . I decided for myself.  I’ve picked myself up from failure countless times.  But I keep going, I keep trying because I know . . . I know the answer is out there and I know I can figure it out.  I believe in myself and I believe in life.

A puzzle I put together entitled "Searching for Peace".

A puzzle I put together entitled “Search for Peace”.

Self Knowledge Is Self Empowerment

This morning I was responding to comments from my last blog post, Breaking Open.  And not for the first time when replying to a comment, I found that my reply was turning into a full blown blog post.  Something happens for me in that particular dynamic that clears my head, and I go into a very clear and sacred space.

The big picture view and my own personal view come into focus and it’s almost like everything has already been written . . . I’m just copying it down as if I was taking notes in a class.  In that space, everything makes sense.  Everything is understood.  It is a place of timelessness.  It is a place of peace and love.

(Oh man if you could see in my head right now, my natal chart has just lit up like a pinball machine on crack . . . I can see exactly how everything I’m writing today is shown prominently in my birth chart.)

I hope a way presents itself on how I can incorporate that more into this blog, because I am much happier writing from that space.  Until then, I’d like to share what came from my initial attempt to reply to a comment.

It was in reply to Astrologerpeg’s comment.  (Here’s a shout out to her own blog site Astrologerpeg’s Blog . . . that’s what you can expect from me if I call you out unexpectedly in one of my posts.  Free advertising ; )  But back to the comment, most specifically to this part:

 I don’t know what we can do about the world, except visualize it better and believe that one day it will be better

I would imagine that Astrologerpeg is far from alone in her thoughts about this.  Things are insane . . . but what do we do?

I started to reply with a big fat “I don’t know” . . . except when I started typing . . . something else came out instead.  I don’t think it’s *the* answer, but I believe it’s *an* answer.  The remainder of this post is that *something* that my heart wanted to say.  (And thanks Astrologerpeg for being the person that I needed to help me focus and clear my thoughts, enabling me to be able to communicate them at all.  A perfect example of how just being who you are, can help others in ways you can’t possibly imagine.)

How I feel about it right now, is that a lot of focus is currently on what we can do to change other people.  “If I do *A*, then the other person will do *B*, and then that will make the world a better place.”  But all that does, is force us to project our world and understanding of it onto another person.  It forces us to make assumptions and judgments about them.  When we do that, we aren’t really listening to what they have to offer, and we’re not seeing who the person is and ultimately we just end up negating them.  I don’t feel that is helping the world.

I can’t know another person better than themselves.  I don’t know what they know, I haven’t experienced what they’ve experienced.  So how can I tell them who or how to be, or even what is best for them?  So I feel, that instead of trying to tell everyone else what to do, feel, or think . . . that we first focus on learning and understanding who we are for ourselves.

Why do I need to do things this way?  Why does this make me feel the way it does?  What hurts me?  What makes me happy?  Why?

Not from a defensive judgmental standpoint, but from a place of childlike curiosity (aka Gemini :).  It is like unwrapping a never-ending present.  A great joy comes from discovering who *you* really are.

When a person understands themselves, then they are more easily able to communicate back out to others what is and is not true for them.  What is and is not okay for them. Healthy boundaries are easier to set and maintain.  It’s harder to be manipulated and controlled by others.  It becomes more difficult to fall into “victim” status.

Knowledge is power.  So knowledge of self becomes Self-Empowerment.

A tremendous amount of inspiration in my life came from the quote by Mahatma Gandhi, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”  I have it written on a slab of stone hanging over my fireplace.  When something inspires me, I take it to heart and I strive to live by it.

The things that inspire us, make us happy, and brings us to life . . . they do so because it is something important to who we are in our heart.  The same things that inspire me won’t necessarily inspire jack-shit in another person no matter how much I like them . . . because it’s not a part of who they are meant to be.  It’s not a part of their journey.  Some things inspire all of us because they touch on a universal truth, but that’s the exception and not the rule.

So why then, do we try to take our personal truths and make everyone else live them?  (I am one of the biggest offenders of this, btw.)  It’s with good intentions, yes . . . but what happens is when others choose to do their own thing instead of what you’re doing . . . it feels like you don’t support them on their path, and like they don’t support you on yours . . . and then it becomes harder to be who you are around others.  That’s a lose/lose.

But what if, instead . . . we just took those things that speak to our heart and become those things ourselves.

The more that I become who I am by embodying what I hold most valuable and dear to my heart . . . the less need I feel to judge or change anyone else around me.  The more I’m able to truly see others for who they are, and not as I need or wish them to be.  The more I’m able to actually live my life on purpose, and not spend all of my energy trying to control and manipulate everyone around me in an effort to make the world better by my standards.

So I guess my feeling about what can be done to change the world . . . is that you don’t.  I don’t feel that the focus should be on changing the world.  That’s too much responsibility for one human.  There’s no way you’re going to convince 7+ billion people to all think one way, because each has their own way that needs to be honored.  But if all 7+ billion people all truly understood and honored their own, unique way . . . then the world would change.

No, but I do!

No, but I do!

Breaking Open

The breakup was back in November.

But I still miss him.

I still love him.

Tonight’s crying has been the most heartbreaking so far.

The reality of what’s happened has only now seeped through the ice and defenses that have been my exterior, and reached my core.

So the crying is coming straight from my heart.

The kind of deep hurt that only comes when you’ve taken the risk of opening your heart fully to someone.

And then losing them.

And everything you had dreamed together.

And there’s nothing you can do about it.

I thought the failure of the relationship meant that I had failed.

That maybe I still hadn’t learned how to trust.  That I still hadn’t learned how to be open and vulnerable.   That I still hadn’t learned how to let someone into my heart.

But right now . . . as I sit here feeling like my whole world is crashing down on me . . . and like my heart is being shattered into a million pieces . . .

I am starting to see the gift that has been given.

I’m not feeling like this because I failed to learn how to trust or how to open my heart to another human . . . I’m feeling like this because I succeeded in doing those things.

The feeling is at once the most painful and most beautiful thing I’ve ever had to endure.

It feels like the most intolerable thing a human being could be asked to endure while still conscious.

But something that I’m only able to experience if I’m connected to my heart . . .

And with that realization, it becomes something so extraordinary and precious to the human experience.

Something I wouldn’t give up for the whole world.

I have spent my WHOLE life being afraid of love.

I have spent my WHOLE life trying to hide and protect myself from getting hurt.

I have spent my WHOLE life alone and afraid.

And as I sit here crying and curled up in the fetal position feeling the one thing I have most feared my whole life . . . I’m finding my heart again.

Through the fear and pain of the heartache, I can see and feel everything in me that is my love and heart.

And it’s all of me.

I had thought I lost my ability to love.

But no.  I love with all of me.  I love with everything I have.

As I’m feeling my heart come back to me I’m remembering why I cut it off.

The things happening in this world break my heart.

I can hardly stand it.

The things I see in the news . . . the way people treat each other just in everyday life . . . it makes me cry so deeply.

The way the school systems systematically crush the spirit and love out of children, and all we do is stand by and watch feeling helpless.

WHY ARE THERE HOMELESS AND HUNGRY PEOPLE!!! THERE IS MORE THAN ENOUGH FOR EVERYONE!

What the FUCK is wrong with the people on this planet!?!?!?

What are we doing?!?  What are we doing to ourselves?!  And why?!  WHY DO WE LIVE LIKE THIS?!

I don’t understand, I’ve never understood.  My heart can’t handle it.

We let bad and stupid things happen to people because “that’s just the way it is”.  But why?!  Why does it stay that way?  It doesn’t need to be that way!  Goddammit it makes me so angry!

What the fuck has happened to us?

This is NOT how things are supposed to be!

This is NOT alright, this is NOT okay!  This is horrible!

The violence, the arrogance, the ignorance, the suffering, the heartbreak, the loss of hope . . .

Why?

Why do we all sit in our pain and suffering alone?  We are killing ourselves . . . we are dying inside . . . and we can’t see past ourselves in order to see what needs to change.

We are so frozen in fear that we are unable to help ourselves.

It tears me apart and breaks my heart over and over.

I used to cry alone all of the time when I was younger because of things I heard people doing to each other all over the world.

Why?!  Why?!  Why?!

Killing and hurting each other over things that don’t matter, that don’t mean anything!?  It’s so insane I can’t comprehend it.

Who FUCKING CARES if people are gay?!  I don’t understand what that has to do with ANYTHING that is important.  They are human beings!  And they deserve to be loved and nurtured and cared for and happy the same as the rest of us!  Any GOD who says that two people who love each other are in sin is WRONG.  I don’t fucking care who it is, I will tell any God to his face that they are wrong in this matter!

And nobody, NOBODY should be homeless or hungry.  No fucking body.  I don’t care if they are lazy, assholes, or straight up serial killers.  NOBODY should be homeless or hungry.  That’s not something you GODDAMN FUCKING EARN!  There are some things that each and every person should get to have no matter who they are or how they behave . . . and food and shelter are two of those things.  The third is love.  Everybody . . . everybody should be made to feel loved.

And the prison system!  We act like we have nothing to do with how the people in the prison system are.  We act like our decisions and choices as a community or nation have nothing to do whatsoever with the way the people in the prison system are.  They are nothing more than our scapegoats.  At some point in their lives they were neglected and failed by their families and communities and they are paying the price for all of our failures.  People are scared of them and judge them . . . but THEY are the things about ourselves that we don’t want to acknowledge or deal with.

Mental institutions?  Same thing.

And guess what?  It’s gotten so out of control that it’s catching up to us.  We won’t be able to run from ourselves anymore.  Everyone will start seeing how they are the very thing that they judge.  That they are the very thing they hate and fear in one form or another.  How this world isn’t real, only the souls and spirits in it . . . and how you treat the souls and spirits in it is of far more importance than anything physical you see.

{Sigh}

I love you.  I love each of you.  I can feel you in my heart, and your hurts are my hurts.  Your happiness is my happiness.  I don’t care what you’ve done in the past . . . I want you to know happiness . . . I want you to know love.  I want you to feel like you belong.  I want you to feel like someone would care if something happened to you.  I want you to know uninhibited joy.  I want you to feel seen.  I want you to feel heard.  I want you to feel like you matter.

Because you do.  You mean the world to me.

I Feel Joy In The Darkness

When I am tuned into my center, the prominent energy I feel resounding in me is Joy.  I feel a mix of many other energies that also make up who I am, but if I had to give a one word description for what pulses in my being . . . it would be Joy.

Many times in life, I have felt ashamed or guilty for not feeling the appropriate feelings in a situation.  I have wondered what is wrong with me that I don’t respond emotionally to things like others do.  I worked hard to match the feelings of others so that I could learn how to be “right”.

I learned that when another person is having a hard time, it’s not okay to be happy.  I learned when another is happy, it’s not okay for me to be sad.  It was confusing to me that it wasn’t okay for me to feel whatever I was feeling without others getting really upset or mad at me.  So I learned how to block out my own feelings and make myself feel what I was taught was appropriate.  And that made me feel kind of numb and dead inside.

Whenever I try to just be who I am, I continue to run into the same issues that I have all along and I just want to understand.  I feel most secure and safe in life when I understand the meaning behind something.

A clear understanding struck me suddenly during a moment of contemplation.  I felt and saw myself in a generic situation where someone was in a dark place in their life.  Upon seeing them, I expanded and grew much larger and increased in light.  I felt my prominent energy of joy begin to course through me.

I saw how my feeling of joy in the presence of someone’s dark moment could be mistaken as inappropriate.

But I am not feeling joy because of the person’s pain and sorrow, I am feeling it because I am opening up and becoming more present to be there for them in their moment of need.  When I open up, more of my energy and who I am comes in . . . and who I am inside is joy.

When I feel joy when someone I care about is having a tough time, it is expressed as compassion and love.  It changes flavors depending on the situation.  I’m not sitting there getting giddy and giggling as the person cries.  But I will brighten and light up.  I will come alive, because that is a part of who I am and what I do.  I am of no use to a person if I dim or turn down my light so that we can both sit in the dark together.

Whenever I’ve been in a dark and cold place, the thing I could have used the most was someone else to hold and stand strong in themselves in the warm light with me so that I didn’t get lost in the dark.  So that I could feel safe in feeling my upset feelings, knowing that once I’ve felt them . . . the person there holding the light will be there so I can find my way back to my own happier place.

On a larger scale, it was also conflicting to me that the more that things begin to break down on a global scale, the happier and more alive I began to feel.  At least initially.  Until social conditioning kicked in and I began tearing myself down for being a total asshole.

But it’s the exact same situation.

I’m not getting off on the destruction . . . my soul responds by trying to come into being through me in order to help.  I experience my soul as joy.  The more pain and upset there is, the more my soul tries to come into being and the more joy and love I feel trying to come through me.  But then I start becoming afraid of my own “inappropriate” feelings and try to stop myself from feeling good and shut myself out.

I’m basically saying to my soul, “No!  No.  You do not get to come in here and help.  How dare you be who you are and feel joy and happiness with all the horrible stuff going on.”

And my soul is all, “WTF?! I can only be what I am.  That’s how I help.  I hold the space of joy so that others can face their dark night of the soul, and afterwards find their way back out.  Ya dumbass.”

So now I better understand what is meant when others talk about being a “beacon of light” and to “be myself”.  It doesn’t look or feel how I thought.  It doesn’t look or feel how I was taught.  It’s going to be misunderstood and judged wrongly by some.  But as the saying goes, what others think of me is none of my business.  I just need to understand for myself why I am like am, and why I do what I do.

Shining from within

Shining From Within