The War Outside and The War Within

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the Aries/Libra axis lately.  Obviously something in me is trying to work itself out.  Trying to finish reconciling.

So let’s take a walk together, shall we?

I have a loaded 1st house (natural house of Aries), and lots of Aries itself.  Along with the ruler of the 1st house and Aries, Mars . . . IN Aries in the 1st house.  Along with my South Node, Venus, Chiron, Mercury, and two not shown here (but that play a big part in my life) are Eris (conjunct my ascendant) and Sedna (conjunct my Chiron).  There’s a lot going on in my house of Self.

Natal First House

Aries.  It is the new spark of life.  It is consciousness.  It is action and movement.  It’s what forces the flowers in spring to push and rise through the dirt to the surface.  It is presence and spirited energy.  Motivation.  Leadership taking you into new territory.  Mars is what our motivation is.  Mine is in Aries and in the 1st house, I’m extraordinarily self-motivated.  I don’t wait around for someone to tell me what needs to be done, I get on top of stuff immediately.

This energy is competitive.  It’s also known as the warrior.  The fighter.  It’s animal instinct for survival.  It is the fight, flight, or freeze response we have.  (My poor, poor adrenal glands.)  It’s will power.  It’s a persevering energy.  You gotta do, what you’ve gotta do.  There’s no point sitting around bitching and moaning about it, get your ass in gear and just DO it.  It’s very personal energy.  It’s very *real* and raw.

Having such a large emphasis of this energy, very much of my life has been focused on survival.  When you’re in survival mode, you don’t have the time or luxury to be laying about and enjoying the good life.  You can’t put your defense down.  You have to focus and be fully present.  You need clarity.  You need a clear head and there’s no time for bullshit or goofing around.

Libra on the other hand, is the sign of the diplomat or politician.  It’s more cultured.  Ruled by Venus, it’s all things beautiful and harmonious.  The designer clothes, the pedicured toes, the waxed eyebrows.  Situations are not life or death.  You have time to talk it over and see both sides and try to be fair about it.  Libra is the balancer.  Regaining equilibrium.  As well as going to extremes.  People that I know that have an emphasis in Libra energy, tend to go to extremes until they learn how to reel that energy in and use it appropriately.

It’s also not very action-oriented.  It doesn’t want to do anything if it doesn’t HAVE to do it.  The shadow of Libra can be seen in those who were raised in a privileged lifestyle and never forced to do something they don’t want to do.  They can become out of touch with the “common” people (those gross Aries peasants).  Because they are not forced into life and death situations, they make up ones.  The ones that you see having a complete meltdown because their parents got them the wrong model of Mercedes for their 16th birthday and *ruined* their life . . . is a Libran shadow.

When you go too far into Libra-hood without tempering it with some Aries clarity and presence-in-the-moment-ness, you can start becoming disconnected or out of touch from real life.  You can get so wrapped up in trying to be “fair” to everyone that nothing ever actually gets done.  You can get caught up in bureaucratic red tape.  The actual individual people are no longer seen.  It becomes about looking good, or being perceived as caring about the individual people . . . when really you have no idea what they’re really going through.  The average modern-day politician is an example of the Libra shadow.

If the spring flower were to suddenly go all Libra shadow on us, it wouldn’t bother to leave it’s seed.  “It’s too harrrrd.  I don’t wanna . . . It’s not fair!  The dirt is all gross and yucky!”  My point being, there is a genuine need for this Aries energy in life, otherwise everything would wither and die.  Nothing new would begin or happen.

If you remember mythology, you also know that Mars/Ares were related to war.  When you’re talking about War and Peace, you are effectively talking about the Aries and Libra axis.  You are talking about the Western World and The Middle East.  Us vs. Them.

So as I’ve been thinking about this Aries/Libra axis, I keep thinking of a project that was done by Lalage Snow, a photojournalist.  He took pictures of British soldiers before, during, and after war.  Here’s one of a million articles done on it, Lalage Snow’s ‘We Are The Not Dead’ shows the face of war.

I was completely fascinated with these photos.  Being an analyst by nature and as a professional, I didn’t bother reading the surrounding text.  I immediately went to each comparison and looked for what each had in common with each other.  I looked to see what story each one told.  I did not expect what I saw.  In fact, what I noticed was so surprising to me that it led to a whole new understanding of the Aries/Libra axis that I’ve been sharing with you.

I’m going to share some of the photos with you, and again these belong to photojournalist Lalage Snow if you want to look him up yourself.  Take a look at them yourself before reading what I personally saw.

Lalage Snow Soldier 2

Lalage Snow Soldier 1

Lalage Snow Soldier 5

Lalage Snow Soldier 4

Lalage Snow Soldier 3

You may need to click on them to see the larger version to really see their faces.  I had already made up my mind what I had for sure seen before I read anyone else’s comments regarding them.  I was surprised to find that there was so much focus on the tragedy of war, and not noticing something that seemed as obvious as the nose on my face.  That in itself was a bit of a reality check for myself.  That maybe what is obvious to me, is not so obvious to others and why maybe it’s not such a bad idea to share my opinion.

Every single photo, the middle picture which was them during war, their spirit is fully present.  They are in the here and now.  They are aware.  They are very conscious and alert.  There is a light in their eyes that is not present in the other photos.  They.are.alive.  They are not shying away from confrontation.  That focused look you see in their eyes, that is the look of Aries.  Shit is real.  The after photos, you can see how each person as an individual, is trying to handle going back to living as a civilian.  Being surrounded by people who didn’t go through what they went through and so they can’t understand what they are experiencing.

When you go through something that intense, and then come back to people whining and complaining about stupid shit that doesn’t really matter in life, it’s hard to continue to stay present in your body.  It’s hard to process your own emotions and feelings because you don’t have anyone who really gets what you went through, so you end up feeling alone and isolated.  Aries.  Self.  The Lone Warrior.  You go from knowing minute by minute what is most important and cutting the rest of the bullshit out, to listening to politicians go on and on about stuff that doesn’t match reality and bombarded with all these commercials trying to convince you that their shit is super important and you need it.

Back in the day when indigenous cultures still held rituals that marked different stages in our lives, there was a whole process and ritual around the returning warriors.  There was story telling.  There was recognition.  There was a period of re-integration back into their community.  They were held with honor and respect for what they had been through.  Our warriors are now kicked to the side and left to pick up the pieces of their lives on their own.  They’re told that there’s nothing wrong with them and to suck it up.  Because people disagree with the politics of what is happening, they take their frustration out on the individual soldiers instead of the ones actually responsible for the war.

Which brings me to the question of why we still have war in this day and age.

The main obstacle that I personally see for why we still have war, is that the ones who make all of the policies and decisions, are all lost in the shadows of Libra-hood.  They have become too disconnected from reality, from the common people.  They no longer understand how their choices and decisions are really affecting those of us on the ground.  They hold the power and the money.  They can make a lot happen with so little effort.  They’re caught up in their own little power plays between each other.  They know how to play “the game” to get their way.

Then you have the people.  Who have all been thrown into survival mode by the really shitty and selfish choices of the powerful who are all playing games with our lives.  I would venture to say that humanity as a whole is in survival mode (Uranus is currently transiting Aries . . . the planet that represents humanity in the sign of survival), except the people in power don’t want anyone panicking . . . so they keep pretending like everything’s okay.  Just like how the soldiers are told that they’re fine and to suck it up, the general populace is really feeling the pain . . . but they’re being told they’re fine.

That leads to repression of that Aries fire.  That fight.  That energy that causes something new to rise up and come into being.  The Western World’s Aries fight energy has been repressed.  Nature must have balance.  So what we’re seeing, is The Middle East acting out the Aries energy that we’re repressing.  The Western World is seeing their shadow be played out in the Middle East.

The micro and the macro.  The individual represses their animalistic tendencies, and their partner ends up acting them out.  The country represses their animalistic tendencies, another country will be forced to act them out.

However.  Having said that . . . the Aries shadow is in it’s impulsiveness and unawareness of others.  I’m sure most of you have seen what we call in the US, rednecks, getting ready to just grab their guns and go shoot up the enemy.  There’s an incredible amount of ignorance going on in the Aries spectrum.  You shoot first, ask questions later.  You can’t have that kind of person making decisions for the country.  They’re only aware of their way and screw anyone who is different from them.  They do not care what your side of the story is.  This is how this is and that’s just how it’s going to be.

So there is obviously a gap here.  We have the rich and powerful living way too distant from real life, and we have the poor and trying to survive folks who aren’t really interested in the greater good . . . just “getting theirs”.  There needs to be something to bridge the gap.

Which brings me back to the changes I’m going through right now.  I have that emphasis in 1st house, Aries, & Mars.  I’m most definitely one of the “peasants”.  But I’ve been doing a LOT of observing and learning and understanding of the world and it’s ways and why things are like they are during my life.  And now there’s a new emphasis suddenly in my astrology in regards to all of that Libra energy on my ascendant (solar return, lunar nodal return).

I can feel it working hard inside of me trying to bridge that very gap.  I swear I can almost see it, almost make sense of it all.  That blended energy of Aries clarity with Libra temperance.  An awareness of reality, along with needing to be aware of how different decisions affect people of many different lifestyles and cultures.  I feel the information I’ve collected throughout my life starting to form and take shape.  And it’s strongly related to this energy axis.

But I don’t need to figure it out for the whole world.  I only need to figure it out for myself and live from there.  And then let everything else take care of itself.

Waking From My Own Nightmare

This post I’m doing strictly for me.  It’s something I need.  This isn’t easy for me.

I am seeing a lifelong cycle in me that I’ve repeated countless times.  I don’t want to repeat it anymore.  It’s been slowly destroying me over time.

It’s to do with my relationships with men.  And until now . . . until these last 24 hours . . . I’ve always seen the situations from their point of view.  I’ve been completely understanding of their side, and I’ve never recognized my own feelings about it.  I feel an opportunity at the moment to finally let those feelings come through, and so I’m going to give it a go.

This is not about trying to make myself look good or to bash the men from my past.  My own part in all of this is not any healthier or better than the part the men played.  But I’ve always given voice to their side of the situation, and today I am in great need of giving my side a voice.

I very easily give of myself and ask for nothing in return.  I didn’t know I did it.  And I don’t mean that I did this in a “I’m so good and pure I didn’t even know I was being taken advantage of” kind of way, I mean I did it in a very unhealthy and disempowered way.  There is a *true* way of giving of self and asking for nothing in return vibration that is in alignment with the Divine and is truly a compassionate and unconditional Love.  But this . . . what I have been doing in my intimate relationships, is *not* of that vibration.

I give all of myself in relationships, to men who are unable to give anything of themselves.  Who are in fact, unaware of anyone outside of themselves.  I am not accustomed to receiving anything from my partner.  Whether material gifts, emotional support, etc.  But I am accustomed to being restricted and controlled . . . owned.  They can do whatever they want, but I must toe the line.  They are the nicest guys.  Their reasons for why they do what they do make complete and total sense to me.  They are convinced themselves that they are nice guys.

My ex-husband, who I divorced when my son was still a baby, hadn’t worked since I was 8 months along in pregnancy.  I had an emergency C-section which is considered major surgery.  I was scared to death to sneeze or cough because it felt like all my internal organs would come out.  I was exhausted.  But my husband had completely withdrawn from me and the baby.  He refused to help with the baby ever.  He refused to help with anything at all.

I was still in high school at the time.  I had to take the baby with me and put him in daycare while I was in school.  I then took a bus into downtown to work a part time job I had gotten.  I don’t remember who watched the baby while I did that, but I can assure you it was some convoluted process which was completely ridiculous in nature.  I would then get home late in the evening and cook dinner and make bottles and whatever else had been neglected during the day.  My husband just sat in the living room playing some imaginary game along the lines of dungeons and dragons.  This was all just in the first two months of my son’s life.

Towards the end of the marriage, there is one memory in particular that just blows my mind and I have never understood.  At the time we were staying with my dad in another state.  I had gotten another job there shortly after we arrived, at a Supercenter being built in town.  I often worked 80 hours a week.  I lost about 90 lbs. in the first couple of months of working because I didn’t eat very much and did a lot of physical labor.

I had to pay for a babysitter to watch the baby in the same house that my husband sat in all day.  At $5/hr I made a dime over minimum wage.  I still had to get up all night with the baby.  The one time I shoved my husband out of bed to make him get the baby because I was exhausted, I woke up to him growling in a menacing manner to the baby to shut the fuck up.  Which resulted in me punching something hard and metal next to my bed in order to get my anger out before I marched over to him and the baby, calming myself before gently taking the baby and laying him back in the crib and then grabbing a hold of my husband and dragging him into another room to tell him that if I ever heard him talking or treating the baby in that way again, I would fucking kill him.

I was starved, sleep deprived, and dealing with an adult child who saw himself as superior to me and would yell things at me like how I was the stupidest fucking person he had ever met.  Years later, I’d find out that him and his family would laugh and make fun of me behind my back because they thought I was so gullible and would believe anything.  Fine.  Whatever.

Eventually I asked for a divorce.  In which case he decided it would be a good idea to get a job now to impress me.  He did get a job.  I was not impressed.  I was exhausted and done.  But now to the scenario that I’ll never understand.  He had his first paycheck in hand.  I had mine.  We borrowed a car and went shopping.  I put my stuff on the conveyor belt to pay from my paycheck.  Every single solitary item was a necessity.  Baby food, diapers, etc.  Now, keep in mind that I was the only one who had worked since the baby had been born and every penny had been going to his care.

The cashier rang my stuff up . . . I didn’t have enough money.  I was literally handing over every dime of my paycheck for things I HAD to have to make it until the next paycheck and have enough supplies for the baby.  I needed every single diaper.  I looked to my husband, and I asked if he could please get one of the packages of diapers with his money.  And the man about had a temper tantrum right there in line.  This was my place of work, so I was completely embarrassed by his behavior but also FURIOUS at his attitude.  I gave him the death stare.  He said, “Fine!  That means I’ll have to put back a pair of my sunglasses!”

Which is when I looked at all of the stuff on the conveyor belt and saw that all of it, every single bit of, was stuff for him personally.  Clothes, TWO pairs of sunglasses, along with a bunch of other stupid shit he didn’t need.  Not a single thing for the baby.  Not even a small something for me, his wife and mother of his child who had been killing herself to keep the family afloat.  And the fact that I had to have a fight with him in the middle of a store in order to make him pay for one package of diapers.  Besides his sperm, that was the only other contribution he made to his son.

My dad and step mom were not happy with my decision to divorce.  My dad saw it as me being just like my mother and pulling a man’s child away from him.  So on top of all of it, when I came home at night, I had to see my own family being buddy, buddy with my husband and telling him he didn’t have to leave, he could stay as long as he wanted.  And I was the shunned evil ice queen.  Fine.  Whatever.  I’ll just go be busy with being responsible while everyone else eats grapes and chocolate on their high horses.

Another relationship that comes to mind, was a little later in my life when I was back in Washington state, and was working at my first office job.  I made better money, but still not enough to fully support me and my son.

I started dating an engineer.  To me, this was a huge step up because . . . well he had a job.  I had remembered how stressful it had been on me to not have my husband working and me being leaned on financially so I didn’t want to do that to another person.  He made good money, but I didn’t want him to think that’s why I was with him.

But here’s the part I’m just now realizing I should probably be angry about, but I never felt like I had any right to be mad about.

At this time I was making about $8/hr.  After killing myself making $5/hr . . . this was heaven.  But I also had more expenses, such as gas for a four hour daily commute.  Most of my clothes had come from charity and were well worn.  At the time I had a nasty smoking habit.  Ironically, it was the one thing I spent money on for myself.  I’m pretty sure subconsciously I was hoping they did kill me.  Also because I spent money on them, I had to cut from somewhere else in my expenditures, and the only other negotiable choice was my food.  For two years, I basically lived on Diet Dr. Pepper and cigarettes.  Except for the occasional times people took me out for meals.  I was so skinny, it hurt to sit because my bones would bruise my skin.

Just trying to set the scene, and no, I did not make great choices but I was a single divorced mom by 19 . . . so give me a break.

So things got serious with this guy and we eventually moved in together.  He used to take me to downtown Seattle to the (now) Macy’s to go clothes shopping.  For himself.  He would say, “Hey!  Do you want to go with me clothes shopping?”, and I was all “YEAH!” and then several hundred dollars later he’d be packing his new car with a whole new wardrobe for himself.

I was excited for him to be able to do this for himself, because I am the kind of person who is genuinely happy for other’s happiness.  But as the day wore on and I realized that there was ZERO intention of me getting any new clothes, I found myself many times trying not to burst into tears right there in the middle of the store.  I felt so pathetic, standing there in my clothes from charity, and having selfishly thought that he had maybe wanted to surprise me and do something for me.  I told myself at the time that I shouldn’t expect that of him because it is his money and he does get to choose what he does with it.  I blamed myself for making such a rash assumption and then causing myself undue disappointment.

There was the time he dragged me into the Versace store.  To again show off how much his jeans were that he had bought there.  This wasn’t just a one time thing, he did things of this nature the entire relationship.

Did I mention that he made 6 figures at the time?

We once got into a huge fight because I was having a hard time paying my half of the rent.  I had childcare costs, which is the equivalent of a mortgage payment in it’s own right.  So, yes, I was struggling to pay my HALF of the rent to a man I was in a serious relationship with.  At the time it seemed “fair” and I fucking beat myself up emotionally for being such a loser that I wasn’t able to keep up with the expenses off of my very modest paycheck.

We got in a fight over toilet paper.  He said I used way too much toilet paper.  I asked if he had ever lived with a woman before, because bitches use a lot of toilet paper.  I asked if he wanted me to stop wrapping up the tampons and just throw them straight into the garbage, blood and all.  He told me to stop being so wasteful and ridiculous.  I told him to fuck off.  I had my limits, and apparently toilet paper was one of them.

He traveled all over.  Without me.  He went to visit his family at home in Ireland.  He went to Vegas.  Up to Canada with his friends.  He was living quite the life while we were together.  But very little of it had anything to do with me.  After the initial “falling in love” phase, he never made me feel like I was beautiful to him.  More like I was just a hot piece of ass.  Big difference.  He acted like I was some gold-digging burden when in fact I bent over backwards trying to show that it wasn’t about the money for me.  I was all in for the relationship and him.  To him I was just this pretty object he pulled down from the shelf every once in awhile when he was bored or needed to get his rocks off.  There wasn’t much more of him present in the relationship.  He mostly tolerated me.

I went from relationship to relationship with similar outcomes.  The guy was always totally stuck in himself even as he convinced me that the things he did were for me.  And I believed it.  But in hindsight, I can see how all of it can be traced back to themselves.  They weren’t in a relationship with me, they were in a relationship with my body and then some made up picture they projected over the top of me.  So, basically a relationship with themselves.

But to be fair, I was doing the same.  Projecting a much prettier picture over them from myself.  I used to say and I still want to say that I loved them because of the soul I saw inside . . . and maybe that is true at some level.  But at the personal level, I wasn’t in love with who the men really were, I was in love with how I thought they were based on who I was inside.  My interpretations of their behavior was based on how I saw and experienced the world . . . not the truth of the situation.

Eventually I took an 8 year break from relationships altogether.  To understand who I was outside of a relationship.  Somewhere at the 6 year mark I had a couple of flings and saw that nope, I’m not ready yet to get back out dating.  Still attracting douches.

Which brings us up to a couple of years ago.  By this time I was making a good living and able to fully support me and my son on my own.  I thought this would change my relationship dynamics.  I’m good on my own now, both emotionally and financially.  I don’t have to be in a relationship if I don’t want to.  Therefore, I will be less likely to repeat my cursed cycle from all those years ago when I was a spring chicken.

But I was wrong.  I put in all I had to try and not repeat my relationship doom . . . and it still happened again.  Because the real issue isn’t to do with money.  It’s an attitude.  A habit.  So even though in my last relationship, we were both fine financially, psychologically it was the same dynamic.  Just incredibly more sophisticated in nature.

It started out with a bang, all in love, la-de-da.  But slowly over time, I was making more and more compromises on my end, while nothing changed on the other end.  So sure that this relationship was meant to be, I put away all thoughts that maybe it wasn’t meant to work and set to work to doing whatever was needed in order to make it succeed.

They say relationships are about compromise.  So if he was stuck and didn’t know how to get around an obstacle, I’d step in and help him work it out.  Until one day I realized that nothing had ever actually moved forward in the relationship, but that now all of my time was being focused on him and helping him become “unstuck”.  He didn’t have to work and had zero responsibilities except to feed, shower, and clothe himself . . . and he had all of my time and attention.  I work full time, I’m a mom, I have pet(s), I have a household to run, I’m over here in the USA doing everything by myself . . . and now I was also giving my undivided attention to helping him figure things out so that he could get out in life.

In my mind, I thought I was investing and building a strong foundation for the two of us for our future.  I was dedicated and determined to figuring out this relationship phenomenon.  I sacrificed and compromised.  When I said this was hard trying to make things works across a continent and an ocean, he said yes it was hard for him too.  And in the midst of my insanity I thought that he really did understand how hard this was all on me.  Because again,  I projected my understanding onto him.

He’s never had to work a day in his life.  He doesn’t have the first fucking clue what I was living through this last two years.  That’s just a perfect example of how we trip ourselves up.  I should have KNOWN he didn’t really understand or know what this was all doing to me.  I should have known that someone who doesn’t have any real responsibilities, is just plain incapable of understanding my life.  It’s just not possible.

Just like when people say that you can’t understand what it’s like to have kids until you have kids?  And the people without kids get all up in arms and defensive like they’ve been insulted.  It’s because you CANNOT understand what you don’t know or haven’t experienced yourself.  It’s only after you’ve had it or experienced it that you can THEN see that, omg . . . no, I really could not have known that until now.

That was basically our whole relationship in a nutshell.  The issue being that he convinced me that he really did know and understand this or that even though he never did it himself personally, and me having done or experienced those things personally, didn’t believe that I knew better than him.

As I said to him once, he was more confident in his own bullshit than I was in my truth.

Which basically sums up my life.  The root cause of how I become my own worst enemy, relationship after relationship.

So the solution isn’t about those men changing.  There are always going to be dicks around.  They have to even see that they’re being dicks before they can work on changing themselves.  And you have to really want to change yourself in order to put in the hard work required.  So no, that’s not the solution.

What I also don’t want to do is close my heart and become one of them.  That’s not a choice in my book.

So that leaves myself.  I need to lay down better boundaries and enforce them, even at risk of offending or making things awkward.  I can’t do this to myself again.  As I get older, I have a harder time recovering from this level of bullshit mistake.

I have to be more fair to myself.  I have to stand up and protect myself from others who *are* being douchebags.  Not because they don’t deserve love, kindness, and understanding . . . but because it’s a fucking waste of time when someone is all closed up like that.  They will just take and take and take until you’re drained and then toss you aside because you no longer serve a purpose for them.  Sacrificing yourself doesn’t make them “see the light”.  They’re so used to people giving them everything they want and bending over backwards that the people around them just become this blur of stuff that doesn’t really register on their radar or even really care about.

It’s not worth it.  It’s absolutely not worth it.  But maybe if people quit believing their bullshit, and quit fucking enabling them and doing everything for them . . . maybe they’ll be made uncomfortable enough that they finally do choose to fix their shit.  It has to affect them personally before they have motivation to change.  But that’s actually not my concern or my own motivation.  They can choose to change or not change, either way I’m not going to let them have a say in my own life anymore.

Now, some of those fuckers are tricky.  They start using shit like they’ll die if you don’t do this or that for them.  They’ll start acting like they’re just a weak sack of shit that needs you.  “What will I do without you, I can’t make it without you.”  Or say stuff like, “I can’t, but I just can’t.”  No. No.  That’s emotional blackmail.  That’s bullshit.  Don’t coerce or manipulate me into putting up with your bullshit, by hinting, suggesting, or even straight out telling me that the consequences of not putting up with it, could lead to your death or demise.

If you play that shit on me, then I guess you’re going to die if it’s true, because I do not fucking play that game.

I have NOT had an easy life and I have gone through some of the most insane stuff, but time and time again I have had to pull my shit together by sheer will power, and all on my own with little to no support in order to have the life that I have now which is insanely more happy than my childhood.  I refuse to be a victim.  I refuse to be a statistic.  So I’m not going to sit there and allow others to behave in that manner towards me anymore like I’m the one that doesn’t get it or understand their suffering.  I understand TOO well, but that doesn’t mean you get to wimp out in your own life or make other people responsible for your crap.  Pick up your own shit and fix it yourself.

funny-cat-box-yelling-fallen

The Moment Of Surrender

Years ago I had a very lucid dream where I had walked into a large room that looked very much like a classroom, but without the desks and chairs.  Some sort of special training appeared to be taking place.  The two people in charge approached me.

I don’t remember what they said exactly, but something along the lines of an audition taking place.  It was a special VIP invite only.  The best of the best had been gathered into this room.  The best of what?  Auditioning for what?  I have no idea.  But the looks I received from the instructors told me that they were thinking exactly what I felt.  “What are you doing here?”

I looked at the group of phenomenal people who were currently gathered in the middle of the room showing off their obvious talents.  Things were being fired at them.  Lasers, orbs, things I couldn’t identify.  Stuff whizzing throughout the center of the room.  Some were good at using weaponry they wielded, some had the ability to move fast, some used martial art-like moves to deflect and protect themselves.

The information that came to me about the situation, was that these people had been training hard since childhood.  This was something they had been dreaming of and working towards every moment of their life.

What on earth was I doing here?  I didn’t belong here.  The instructors asked me what my special ability was, and I just shook my head and told them I had no idea.  That there must have been some mistake.  I was starting to feel a little humiliated and embarrassed to be there.

The woman instructor did some sort of energetic scan of me to see if she could assess what stood out in me, but wasn’t able to hide her own disappointment when she found that no, nothing special stood out in me . . . confirming my own worst fears.  I got the impression that the only reason I was even there was because of who my dad was (in the dream).  My dad was apparently someone who held a great deal of respect and importance.  So I was feeling like *that* person.  The one who wasn’t there on their own merit.

I continued to watch and observe the others.  They were amazing.  I knew for sure I didn’t belong and with that acceptance in me I was able to let go of even trying to prove myself.  I would stay because I had been instructed to come here by some authority figure that I respected and trusted completely and wouldn’t even dream about disobeying, but I wasn’t going to try and pretend to be someone or something I wasn’t.

It felt good to accept the reality of my situation in which I found myself instead of panicking and trying to force something to happen.  I found myself smiling at them.  Appreciating the hard work and dedication they had put into getting themselves to this level.  I admired them.  I respected them for the hard path they had chosen.  Their dedication.  Their spirit.  I looked forward to discovering my special ability so that I could work hard like them and maybe one day truly deserve to be here.

I thought perhaps that was the true reason I had been sent there in the first place.  Maybe an exercise in humbleness.  The understanding that you have to work hard to get what you want.  And I was okay with that.  I was okay with that being my lesson to learn from all of this if that’s what truly held me back in my growth.

With that feeling I closed my eyes, feeling a wave of peace and calm wash over me.

In that peace, I also felt love and joy.  I was happy with this lesson.  I was happy in my acceptance of what was, instead of what I wished it to be.  Maybe today wasn’t my day to shine, but one day it would be.

I became centered in myself.  The world outside of me became quiet.  The joy and peace that I felt inside began to grow and well up from deep within me.  With it, I felt music.  I felt a song.  I felt the vibration of my soul song.  It demanded that I express it in dance.

Eyes still closed, my heart open and at peace, I began to move.  I swirled on tiptoe, my arms spiraling out around me.  My body and the living music humming through me, moved as one.  Up on one foot, pause, and then swirl both arms to the right . . . and then to the left.  Right arm out and around and then behind me.

Every movement surrendered completely to the love and joy I felt moving through me in the most divine song.  My current situation totally forgotten.

Until I opened my eyes and found myself square in the middle of the firefight, completely untouched and unharmed.

Then a flash moment of, “OH SHIT! WTF am I doing?!”, while also catching the completely shocked faces of the instructors that I’m sure mirrored my own.  The woman instructor quickly pulled herself together and then yelled at me to keep doing whatever I had just been doing . . . because whatever it was . . . it was my special ability.

So I quickly closed my eyes to the chaos and danger all around me, willing the absolute terror I had started to feel away, and called back again the music inside and danced.  But now I was also aware of what was going on around me.  I could see with my mind’s eye, how every movement I made naturally moved me out of harms way.  Every twirl, every pause, every extension and sway kept all of my body in the safe spaces for that moment in time.

If I were to doubt, resist, question my movement at all . . . I would be hit.  But when I fully trusted in the music in me and let go of worrying or being afraid of what was happening around me, then I was perfectly safe.

I became so overjoyed in learning this about myself, that I truly had no reason to be afraid, that the music in me began to grow even stronger and louder, to the point that I was able to fully open my eyes and give in completely to the joy and ecstasy that it was to be me.

The intensity in me increased until I no longer saw the things being shot at me as my enemy, but as my dance partner in life.  I no longer saw the difference between the dance and the fight, they were one and the same.

Graceful Dance II

Getting All Growed Up

For the most part, my life has stayed relatively the same for several years.  Same job, same apartment, same day-to-day routine more or less.

I’ve had big stuff happen such as my son being hospitalized, getting engaged, the breakup with the fiancé, my girl kitty dying . . .  but nothing actually fundamentally changed.  Ok, maybe inner growth blah blah blah, but it doesn’t *feel* like change to me when my daily routine is basically undisturbed.

But I have some big changes happening astrologically which have been rumbling and shaking the ground from under my feet.  One, I only know about thanks to Aries Introvert, who pointed out that I have a lunar nodal return coming up in July.  That happens once every 18.6 years . . . that’s a HUGE deal.  Learning that helped make sense of an underlying tension I’ve been feeling start to come on recently.  My Solar Return alone couldn’t account for the bigness of what I’m feeling happen.  I also recently, at the beginning of the year, had transiting Uranus cross my ascendant . . . but that’s just become par for the course for me.

However, what is super interesting to me, is just how similar my Solar Return and Lunar Nodal Return are, emphasizing everything.  Okay, I wasn’t planning on it, but I truly feel visuals help so I’m going to go grab those charts and brb.

. . .

Okay so here are the charts for easy reference (using the Koch house system).  My natal, my Solar Return, and Lunar Nodal Return.

Natal NN Reference

Natal

2014 Solar Return

2014 Solar Return

2014 Lunar Nodal Return

2014 Lunar Nodal Return

Okay, so take special notice of my natal lunar north node which is circled at 23 degrees Libra.  Look at my rising sign for my 2014 Solar Return.  23 degrees Libra.  My rising sign for my lunar nodal return?  Libra.  Conjunct what?  The 23 degree Libra north node.

Btw, a solar return is a snapshot of the heavens in the current year on the moment that the sun returns to the exact same degree as your birth.  It gives you an idea of what you’ll be working on for the year.  A lunar nodal return is under a similar premise, it’s when the transiting nodes return to the same exact place they were when you were born and gives you an understanding of a bigger cycle in your life that lasts approximately 18.6 years.

There are two things in particular that have been at the foremost of my awareness today that I can totally see how it fits here.  1) Uranus in Aries in the 6th house for both returns 2) Libra rising/Aries descendant in both returns.

The Uranus (sudden change) in Aries (new) in the 6th house (day-to-day work) is pretty apparent in my life.  I *suddenly* found out that my job of 5 1/2 years was most likely ending at the end of June . . . and before I had too much time to panic, I *suddenly* had a new job.

But what’s maybe not so apparent, is that *suddenly* I can’t seem to keep astrology out of my blogs.  Astrology is ruled by Uranus.  Aries relates to the individual self.  6th house is also known as the house of healing & service.  My blog is more or less a part of my daily life.  I suppose it could technically count as a service, but I suppose that depends on whether it actually helps anyone or not, but at minimum it’s a tool I use along with astrology in helping to heal myself as an individual.  So perhaps with that in my Lunar nodal return, this will start becoming a bigger part of my life going forward.  Who knows?  Aries is *new* and Uranus is innovative . . . so it may even be stuff I haven’t thought up yet.

Point being, my work life going forward is going to be anything but dull.

Now to the Libra/Aries bit.  In my natal I’m an Aries rising and I have a mountain of 1st house emphasis including an Aries Mars & Venus.  With all this Libra switch-a-roo going on in my return charts, I’m experiencing the Aries & Libra energy in a new way, and I have to say I’m pleasantly surprised with the understanding I’m gaining.

The biggest thing is that I’m feeling this switch in me of approaching life from a view of survival, into one of more purposeful choices.  For example, the lease on my apartment is going to end in a month or two and I’m considering looking for a new apartment that is closer to town.  In the past, this meant finding the least expensive apartment I could find that had the bare minimum for me to survive off of.  It wasn’t so much about what I wanted, as it was about I was going to learn how to like whatever I could find.

But this time I’m like, “Hey, let’s not be so hasty.  Let’s see what cool things are available that maybe aren’t necessities, but would perhaps enrich my life some more.”  Aries –> Libra.

Or even about my job.  I had more of a feeling of not wanting to just take the first thing available just to make sure I had work, so much as I was starting to think about my career choice as something that I get to have a say in what I do.  Now, I *did* take the first job I walked into (that damn Aries in the 6th house) however it’s because it was something new and was exactly what I *was* looking for.

I still plan on continuing my mission of understanding my skills/talents and taking more of a purposeful & calm approach to the decisions I make in my life.  I don’t need to rush it anymore.  I don’t need to go into “scared rabbit mode” when these big changes happen in my life.  I can take more time to bounce around ideas about what I really want in life to make my life better, instead of strictly surviving.  Again, that’s the difference between the Aries/Libra axis.

The biggest surprise I think for me so far, is that I am starting to understand the whole concept of ‘long-term goals’.  From an Aries rising standpoint, you’re just trying to fucking survive.  *That’s* your long term goal.  Why plan ten years down the road when you don’t even know if you’re going to be alive then?  It’s like one thing at a time please!  🙂

But when you have the luxury of leisure (Libra), then it’s like what’s the rush?  Let’s think about this.  Let’s see what’s possible before we rush into anything.

And that’s a completely new thing for me.  It’s quite a transition in fact.  The whole concept of my whole existence not being based solely off of trying to keep from dying.

Aries is raw material and Libra is the refined material.

So that got me thinking about how now the descendant is showing as Aries.  I’m going to have more people who are in the survival mode coming into my life.  Now, I still have a natal Aries rising, so that still rattles my memories of living in perpetual fight or flight.  But I also have Mars and Venus in Aries.  Libra is ruled by Venus.  So all this new Libra emphasis, still points to my Venus (and Mars since they are both on the exact same 26th degree) . . . but it’s a softer and more refined Venus/Mars that I’m feeling.

I look back on my life and it’s been one big mess of ‘please god, just let me live through this’.  But something else I’m noticing . . . I also used all of those really tough times in my life as opportunities to try something new (Aries).  I challenged myself to not use misfortune in my life as an excuse for failure.  So with an abundance of will power (Aries), I not only got through those endless insane moments in my life, but I learned how to transcend them.  I just knew in my heart, that there was a way to still live in joy even while total insanity was breaking out around me.  A new way of being.

 Now I look at these returns and even at what’s happening right now in my day-to-day life and it’s kind of starting to dawn on me what exactly is happening at this time in my life.  I’m switching roles completely.  I *am* seeing the people around me struggling more and more as shit starts to hit the fan for the general public.  I recognize the eyes in the headlight look that I used to always have.  But that’s no longer me.

Not because stuff stopped happening to me, hell no!  In fact, if anything, it’s been ratcheted up to unbelievable levels.  But when I remember and start putting into practice all of the things I learned in all of my years of struggle and survival, I transform (pluto) into a place of peace and calm (libra) within myself and I’m able to effortlessly navigate ‘the slings and arrows of misfortune’.  I begin to encompass my natal 7th house into myself (which includes my Libra north node) along with my 1st house of Aries Self . . . and reconcile the paradox of duality on that axis (Gemini).

In short, I become the living example or model of the accumulation of all that I’ve learned and have overcome.  And by simply living it, being it, being myself- I am giving that knowledge and information to everyone I come into contact with, even when I don’t speak a word.  I don’t need to preach or lecture. (Although I’m never going to give up talking.)  I simply live it with all my heart.

Living my life out loud, is the value I add to the world.  My life does matter.  I do count.

I truly believe that every person does count.  But I think too often we look for traditional markers of success such as a fancy title or having a lot of money or even at times trying to prove our worth with over-kindness and charity work.

What if the best gift we could offer the world, was ourselves whole-heartedly?  I think the worst that could be said of someone doing that is:

mad fire

This Life I Get To Fight For My Own Happiness

I’ve had many personal readings from many astrologers.  Each reading unique and wonderful in their own way.  Each one giving me a different perspective of how I was seen.  Each one giving light to the many different parts of me that normally go unseen by others.  It felt good.

Some of the astrologers who I’ve had personal readings with are very well known in the astrology community, such as Alan Oken, Philip Sedgwick, and Laura Nalbandian.  I had my chart used as an example during Astrology Night at Soul Foods Café in Redmond by Jeff Jawer & Rick Levine.  Meeting and getting to talk with each of these people in person, were all phenomenal experiences in my life.  So many years of gathered personal experience and understanding of the world from their viewpoint, all getting put to use in order to help me find my place in space and time.

I’ve also had astrologers who were just starting out and learning to see with this new perspective that the world of astrology opens you up to.  The readings were definitely a little more *rough*, but they were not any less valuable to me.  I still felt amazement in hearing each person’s own spin or perspective on life.

funny-cloud-shark-rainbow-drooling

I originally got into astrology because besides being curious by nature, I deeply needed to understand how other people saw the world unique and different from me.  It was ultimately to help me understand myself and my place in the world, but I had no comparison to go off of.  If I only ever view the world from my own perspective, how can I understand how my perspective is different or unique.  How can I understand what it is I have that is of value to offer others?

Funny enough, because I was being a total dork, when first studying astrology, I misread my birth certificate time.  They are military documents, and back when they were still using good ole’ typewriters.  After the time, the form options had both AM and PM.  There were two XXs over PM.  Now even though my mom has told me forever that I was born in the early hours, my brain looked at that and thought FOR SURE it meant that it was selecting PM . . . versus crossing it off as the option.

So for the first year of studying astrology, I studied my chart in complete reverse.  A mirror image.  A Libra rising, with Pluto and Uranus in my 1st house instead of my 7th.  So why did it still make total sense to me?  More sense than my real chart of Aries rising?  Because the way my chart is setup, others frequently project the shadows they don’t want to own onto me.  I identified more with how other’s responded to me, more than I identified with my own self . . . so having my 7th house acting as my 1st house made much more sense to me than the other way around.

I am completely convinced that this was done on purpose, whether by some unseen force or my own subconscious because anyone who works with me knows that I don’t make these kind of mistakes with details.  Not just that, I was unable to *un-think* it for an ENTIRE year.  I kept looking back at my birth certificate and I was unable to see it any other way than the two XXs on the PM mean 2:02 PM.  I even had my own mother start to doubt her own memory of when she had had me, it was that strong.

But then one day, I pulled the birth certificate out to look at it again . . . and saw it as I had seen it before . . . when all at once, I felt something unravel, untwist, un-fog inside of me . . . and I saw clearly for the first time that OMG, I’m such an idiot!  The two XXs were blocking out the PM, because my birth was 2:02 AM . . . so those letters were left uncovered.  My whole world flipped upside down.  My head got woozy and disoriented.

So then I rushed to rerun all of my reports and start all over AGAIN learning about my chart, but now with the correct time.  And *that* is when I started to see myself clearly for the first time in my life.  That’s when I first started to learn that there was a possibility that I wasn’t evil incarnate.  That I didn’t in fact understand myself at all, and neither did anyone else.  That all of the things other people had me believing about myself, actually had nothing to do with me at all.

Astrology profoundly changed my life because it was something that I could look at for myself that was outside of any person’s opinion.  It’s a signature energy imprint for the time and location of when I was born that won’t be repeated for nearly 26,000 years.  This is the window to the workings of something that is bigger than any of us alone.  For the first time I was able to get information about me that wasn’t so tainted by other people’s wounds and selfishness.  I was able to start seeing the me that I remembered from when I was a little girl before the darkness of the world closed in on me.

funny-crayon-blanket-fort-quote

I saw why I was so scared to be myself.  With Pluto conjunct my descendant, and Uranus in Scorpio in the 7th house . . . being myself could mean my life.  Others in my life tended to be very powerful and a bit erratic.  In the past if, I didn’t toe the line, they had no problems ripping the rug from under my feet.  It left me feeling powerless.  It left me feeling like I was forced to make myself small and invisible in order to not offend in any way possible.  But with Pluto and Uranus in Scorpio . . . you NEVER know what it is that you’re doing that is being offensive.  It’s some sort of secret code of conduct that only they know the rules to, and they refuse to share what those rules are outside of themselves.  They only let you know that one was violated by a violent outburst that comes out of nowhere and disappears just as quickly and everyone pretends like nothing happened.

funny wine

I grew up living literally scared to death.

But all I was really trying to say about all of this, is that I’ve spent a good portion of my life outside of my Self, trying to understand and explain life from everyone else’s viewpoint in order to not unwittingly trigger an outburst.  Scorpio/Pluto doesn’t talk about what’s really going on underneath the surface.  It’s the stuff in us that we never say out loud in the company of others.  It’s stuff that we only share with intimate and close people if anyone at all.  Most often it is stuff we won’t even admit to ourselves.

So I was always trying to understand what it is I wasn’t getting about other people because of their strange responses to me, but they’re all locked up tight like Fort Knox.  In order to understand what is going on with them, I was forced to pull out of myself and immerse myself in their world view.  Trying to be understanding of them and their life and their struggles and how it’s not their fault they’re like that.  And that is how I lose my own personal power, how I lose my Self, how I lose my self confidence, and how I become insecure.

Because anyone who knows the Plutonian world, knows that once Pluto has it’s grubby hands on you . . . he’s not going to let you go.  Ever.  Pluto/Scorpio is already dark to begin with, but going into the shadows of that energy?  Omg, you guys, it’s ink black liquid darkness.  That’s where obsession, possession, and murder come out to play.  It.is.scary.

funny-cat-nose-dominance-hand

That’s at it’s worse, but there’s a whole spectrum to Pluto/Scorpio and it’s not all as intense as death and lust.  One of the just starting out astrologers who had given me a reading, saw my north node in Libra in the 7th house.  She started banging on this drum about how I needed to be more aware of other people outside of myself.  Having *just* shared with you how my life really went down . . . I’m hoping maybe you get something of an understanding of how that struck me.  It seriously hurt my feelings over and over.  She’d even call me out on it in the middle of an astrology class she was giving and indirectly shame me in front of everyone.  And I had trusted her and viewed her as a good friend.  I took it as her being real/truthful with me.

But now, after seeing how that relationship went down in flames when she started showing her true colors, I can totally see how she was projecting her own selfishness onto me.  On the outside she seemed to be the one who cared about all of the people around her . . . but she was only ever thinking of herself.  On the outside I only ever seemed to be thinking about me, but really I was only ever thinking about everyone else.

Which brings me to why I was even writing this blog post.  As I said, I love hearing everyone else’s viewpoint about things.  I loved getting readings with people because I’m fascinated with how they view life differently from everyone else.  Astrology is a great structure or topic in which to talk and discuss the world in an alternative way and has a large community.  And having another astrologer do a reading for me, gives me a single focus point in which to compare how everyone’s view differs.  I am the one constant in all of the readings.  Astrology is such that you can tailor the interpretations to your own unique perspective of life.  So seeing how each person interprets my chart, gives me such a rich flavor and experience of the uniqueness in each individual.  They’re all talking about me . . . but really they are all showing me themselves.

And the readings that I value the most, have nothing to do with how famous the person is or how positive of a light they tried to paint me.  The ones that made me cry and touched my heart the deepest, were the ones who spoke from their own power and in their own voice.  I don’t want to be told what you think I want to hear.  You cannot know what I want to hear.  That only ever leads to manipulation, projection, assumptions, misunderstandings, and incorrect expectations.  It’s useless and pointless, and I lose respect for the person and even myself whenever I do it.  It never feels good in either position and it is ultimately giving yourself and your power away.

But the people who told me from their own personal self how they saw my chart?  Those readings had a huge impact on me.  They moved me.  They meant so much to me.  They were the most valuable and priceless gifts ever given to me.

And one in particular has been coming up over and over today and is really what resulted in this whole post, is one where after taking a few moments to study my chart, the woman looked at me and said something to the affect of, “You are here for yourself.  You are here to understand that you matter, that you count.  That others are not more important than you.  You always stand up for others, always willing to fight for the underdog, always willing to sacrifice yourself . . . but you have trouble understanding that you matter too.  And so you are here to learn to fight for yourself and not let yourself get bullied and forced against your will.”

And somehow . . . I’ve already forgotten that.  I forget it over and over.  I’m not here to see the world from everyone else’s viewpoint.  I’m not here to be understanding of another’s situation.  That’s all I’ve ever done in my life.  I’m here to learn how to speak for myself and in my own voice.  I have a unique and individual perspective to share the same as everyone else, and I’m here to learn how to be solidly in mySelf and share only from that space in me.

I’m tired of my own personal perspective and opinion being “wrong” because it’s misunderstood by someone else who is in a darker place than me.  I’m tired of being the one that puts myself out there over and over trying to understand where the offense and misunderstanding is coming from between me and another person.  Every time, after months and sometimes years of digging and trying to understand where the hurt or misunderstanding came from . . . it’s 100% a misunderstanding of what I was actually doing and saying and how the other person CHOSE to see my actions.  Always!  Always, always!

When I’m centered fully in mySelf, I don’t have a mean bone in my body.  The things I do and say are from a pure expression (Aries).  It is me being ME.  I am tired of being guilty until proven innocent and it being me having to put in all of the work in order to ultimately show that I was innocent.  If someone is offended by something I’ve done or said, then I need to start leaving it to them to make the choice to discuss it and better understand who I am.  If they just want to continue to be upset or offended by it, then they can do it outside of my life.

smiling

Who I am, is not something for me to be ashamed or feel bad or guilty about.  It may go against current accepted social protocol, but sometimes social protocol needs to be brought into question because it’s become corrupt and dark.  It doesn’t automatically mean that I’m the one that is wrong or bad.

funny-song-street-singer-girl-dancing

When I’m centered fully in mySelf, all I know is that I am happy.  All I know is that I feel immense love, openness, and joy in my life.  And if that is offensive to others because they can’t see past their own bitterness and darkness, then I’m sorry.  I actually am.  It actually hurts me.  It’s why I get pulled back into the dark over and over, because it literally hurts me to see how true happiness in me, can hurt another human being so much because they have such a lack of it in their life.  It makes me feel so sad and hurt inside for them.

So I want to be this tough girl who doesn’t care about what other people think, but I DO care.  I care immensely, and not just because I care about what they think of ME, but because I care about how they suffer in themselves.  I can feel it.  My Neptune/Moon feels it all.  The heartbreak I feel in so many people in my life just about does me in.  But I can’t do it anymore.  I can’t go back into the dark.  I’m tired and I’ve been fighting this my whole life, and I just don’t have anymore in me to fight for other people’s happiness.

So yes, I care about each and every person who ever crosses my path.  And all I ever want is to be of use, to help lessen your suffering . . . to help you smile again or to help you not give up.

But that is not my fight in this lifetime.  My fight is now for my own happiness.  My fight is in learning how to let go of feeling like an evil douche when I see that someone is feeling hurt, and I can’t stop and try to understand what is wrong and try to make it all better for them.  That I have to let them feel however they need or choose to feel.  That their feelings are not my responsibility.  That they need to learn how to speak for themselves, even while trapped in the dark.

funny-cat-dollar-hugging-money

It’s also a part of incorporating my own shadow of Pluto & Uranus in Scorpio.  I’m going to sometimes appear on the surface to others as a selfish prick by just being me.  And I have to let go of trying to control that and let others think whatever they want about me.  I have to let them do what I’ve learned myself from running into similar situations.  Learn to speak up.  Say something.  Don’t leave it all on the other person.  If you never say anything, or ask, or discuss it with the other person, how will you ever really know what they were thinking or doing without projecting onto them your own reality?

So . . . anyways, that’s what was going on today in my head.  How about you?

Death To The Popcorn Eating Shadows!

Do you know how when you really want to do something and you’re all excited about it in your head and maybe even your stomach, and you’re living it out in your imagination and “Wooo! It’s going to be so awesome!” and you’re getting totally pumped up about doing it . . . and then you think of someone in your life that you’d *like* to share it with but based on the feeling of the response from the last 50 times you’ve asked them to do something similar . . . all of your enthusiasm deflates like a popped balloon animal?

Yeah, me too.

Or how about, when you get a burst of inspiration and all these thoughts and idea come into your head and you’re like “OMG! Why didn’t I think of this sooner?!” and you come busting through the living room, excited to share your brilliance with the world while simultaneously making a list of all the things you’re going to need to do or get in order to bring this brilliance into existence as a favor from you to everyone else . . . but it gets met with less than excited looks on people’s faces?

“Boooo!”

If you’re hard-headed like me, then you’ve probably continued to do this over and over until one day you realize that you can’t even bother to get excited about it yourself.  You no sooner think of something that makes you excited or happy, and this ‘reality trend analysis’ races ahead in your imagination and sees that it always ends up in disappointment and decides to automatically throw the kill switch before you can even get it started.

Other, less hard-headed people, figured out long ago that when it’s something that is important to you or makes you happy but others don’t approve or support it . . . that you keep that shit to yourself and don’t share it with them.  Don’t feed your joy to the killjoys!

But I’ve got a problem.  I share.  I share a lot.  I show my cards at the beginning of the hand.  I’m all “Here’s what I have!  What do you guys all have?!” which is returned with murderous looks thrown in my direction.  People take “Go Fish” way too seriously.  Sheesh.

People have more than one way of letting you know they don’t approve of something.  So someone *might* be saying out loud in words, “Oh my gosh, that is so wonderful, I’m so happy for you!” But they’re being a liar liar pants on fire and you can tell from the tone or tension in their voice or maybe their body language or maybe even just from a feeling you’re getting.  It just doesn’t feel or sound sincere to you.

You may pass it off, or just go with it because I mean, who cares you’re in a good place within yourself because obviously you have *happy* news you just shared.  But something in you picks up the insincerity at some level, and it sits there in the shadows eating popcorn watching this all unfold, rubbing it’s buttery hands together evilly because it knows one day it’s time will come.

Evil Popcorn

When it happens to you enough times and with enough people, you’ll start finding yourself avoiding those people or not wanting to share good news with them or maybe even not be excited about the news yourself.  By this point there is an accumulation of those evil buttery handed party poopers in the shadows who are whooping it up because the one has become the many and they’re starting to gain power and have a say on your attitude in life.

Popcorn Gulls

Over time, these little things can suck and drain the life right out of you.  Kids, this is what happened to grown-ups and why they are so serious about everything and boring.  It’s a disease you catch as you age.  (Gawd, I hope there are no actual kids reading my site with me and my sailor’s mouth!)

What this also brings up for me are things like *secrecy*.  Why people lie.  Why people are SO blind to their own bullshit.  Why people can become so controlling.  Why people can be easily fooled if you say one thing, but do another.

“I know you don’t want me to do this, but I really want to so I’m going to do it anyways.  I don’t want your guilt trips or lectures, so I’m going to do some jedi mind tricks on you so that you can’t see I’m doing it, but we’ll be able to continue being friends/peaceful family member/mate.”

Now, the thing is . . . it’s not that people don’t notice, but as long as nobody says anything about it out loud then everyone *pretends* it didn’t happen.  When everyone pretends it didn’t happen, it actually becomes very hard for anyone to recall it later or even remember that it happened.

If you start doing that long enough in your life and for enough things . . . you start to not notice these covert things.  You start becoming oblivious to all kinds of things going on around you.  If you go your whole life like that and then one day you ever start to unravel that shit . . .

My-Life-Grumpy-Cat-Meme

It’s like cats.  Cats are going to do what the fuck they want to do.  You can tell them no, and maybe they’ll stop doing it.  In FRONT of you.  I have heard a million stories about owners thinking they’ve tamed their cat only to walk in and catch the cat in the act.  The cat is just being true to it’s nature.  The owner is just in serious denial thinking they can control the cat.

Now you can try breaking a cat’s spirit in order to gain control over it against it’s own will and needs, to show that you are a superior being in your own mind’s eye, and continue living in your deluded world that you have total control and dominion over your environment.  But then you’re just a fucking asshole and need a good punch to the face.

No popcorn

Or.  You can make an effort to try and understand the whole reality of what’s going on in the situation and diffuse it from the root instead of fucking up your spiritual and energetic shit beyond recognition or help.

Animals don’t have agendas like “Today, I must piss off my human.”  They do things because there is a reason.  Something is causing it.  It might even be you.  It might be another family member.  It might be a health issue.  Maybe they were abused.  Maybe, it’s because a need of theirs isn’t being fulfilled. <gasp!>   There’s always a solid reason.  But if you’re totally oblivious to your environment or your own shit . . . then you’re going to keep blaming and taking it out on the animal.

So why do I do stupid things like yell out what’s in my hand and share?  Because I do not wish to be oblivious to myself or my life or to other people’s bullshit.  It initially puts me at a disadvantage because until I eventually figure out what’s in everyone else’s hand, people use my straight-forwardness to their advantage.  I get used as a scapegoat.  I am made to feel guilty and ashamed.  I’m talked down to.  I’m ridiculed, laughed at, and made fun of.  Called names.  Talked about behind my back.

But do you know what?  During all of that shit storm . . . everyone is showing me and everyone else all of their cards.  By the time I get to the last card in the last player’s hand, there isn’t anywhere for anyone to hide.  And finally everyone gets to see their own bullshit, and to be perfectly honest?  It’s ALWAYS a relief.

Because we are ALL so sick of the bullshit.  We are all becoming so sick of our own bullshit and everyone else’s, but we’re wrapped up so tight in it that we can no longer see our way out of it.  We want out, but where’s the fucking EXIT sign?

Popcorn Thief

I’ll tell you –>  Stop having tolerance for your own bullshit and get yourself cleaned up.  Which when you do that, you’ll start understanding why shit’s so messed up and how the things you do cause your own problems down the road.

Then you’ll naturally stop having tolerance for other’s bullshit and start insisting that they hold themselves to a higher standard as well.  We need to be visited by a plague of Truth instead of this widespread disease of popcorn eating shadows.

Btw, not putting down popcorn.  I love popcorn.  Especially with salt and butter.  Popcorn’s the best.

Nom Nom Popcorn

Putting The Person Back In Personal

So it looks like it’s about that time where I’m going to have to start interviewing for jobs again.

Which holds so many levels of personal terror, that I can’t even.

It brings up all of my insecurities.  It triggers my survival mode which then commences the “worst possible scenarios” loop sequence in my mind’s eye over and over.  I start living in my own personal theater of hell.

I try to push through it with things like . . . well like breathing for starters.

But this morning when I got up to start writing in my journal, I found that I was absolutely tired of living in this fear surrounding this area of my life.  And the only way I know how to truly conquer a fear of mine, is to face it head on with eyes wide open.

I get in it’s personal space and I stare it straight in the eyeball.

So while writing I asked myself why?  Why is this scaring me to death?  Why does it always scare me to death?  Why do I avoid really seeing and understanding this whole area of my life?

{Staring at it.}

The great thing about truly being done with your own bullshit, is that your questions become more direct and clear . . . and so do your answers.

I hate the whole process (job hunting) from start to finish, because I have no clarity or understanding about my own skills.  I have no clarity in my own skills because my entire career has been built from approaching jobs in a “I just need a job to survive and support my family” kind of way, and then I make myself find reasons to love the jobs I receive so that I excel at them and so that I can continue to support my family.

My focus has always been on what was easily apparent and noticeable about my skillset or previous jobs, that would be enticing to other companies.  Basically, “What do you want to hear?”  Because I *know* I can do whatever job I get.  All I’m trying to do is find ways to help the prospective employer understand that as well.

So I never actually dove into my own personal interests.  I never took time to understand for myself what things I’m actually good at or what it is that I really want to be doing or focusing on in my career.  It never occurred to me that maybe I’ve gathered enough skills and knowledge in the last twenty years or so, that this is now an option.

This old perception, which began when I was a teenager, has always left me feeling powerless and at the mercy of others.  I was always grateful for whatever I got.  I always worked myself to death to prove they had made a good decision in choosing me.  It’s truly an awful feeling and not the best perspective to live life from.  I mean, I’m good while I have a job . . . but start threatening my job and I become a frozen statue of terror.

Like I said last week, it feels like it’s time for a change.

For me personally, what makes me feel confident and open, is knowledge.  Information.  Why does this whole area of my life scare me?  Because I do not understand myself in that capacity or in relation to others.  I do not truly comprehend or see what skills or value I bring to the table of life.  If I don’t have this information and I do not understand it, then 1) how can I effectively communicate it to a prospective employer and 2) how do I know what direction I want to go in my career personally?

Hence.  The TERROR.  AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!

But now I see the issue.  And now I can see the solution.  And now I can see the backside of TERROR as it turns tail to start running from me.

So I grabbed one of my blank dream journals and made it my notebook in which I will use to focus my efforts in this endeavor.  I am going to start combing through my work experience, starting with my current job, and I’m going to start writing down what I can come up with.

But that’s not the whole problem, and in fact . . . that is a very small part of the problem for me.  The key thing missing from my understanding is “in relation to others”.  I do not understand how I compare or how I stand out as an individual from the rest of the 7 billion people.  So, I’m not just going to rely on myself for my quest.  I’m going to get out there and start asking *you* guys.

So heads up if you’re in my other networks. 😀 And don’t avoid me either.  I’m tenacious. Oh! {writes that down in notebook}

Now, when I say that I am going to be asking others.  I don’t mean I’m asking for them to tell me FOR me what I’m good at or what my skills are.  I’m not trying to be lazy about it.  I plan on coming up with my own perspective.  But what is incredibly valuable to me that I can’t get from myself, is how other’s experience me personally.

To clarify further (pay attention, this will be on the test), while interacting with me (job, Starbucks’s line, comments section) what do *you* personally feel or experience with me that stands out for you in your mind.  The key point being, what is your own personal experience.

Not how would you word *me* in your resume, or let’s think about what I *think*  Jenn values and focus my comment around that.  No . . . I mean, in your own self, in your own world separate from the opinions of the planet and the channel 9 news team . . . what about me, stood out for you personally that you appreciated?

Jenn, wtf does that even mean?  And omg are you trying to tell me how to give you feedback?  Why should I even give it in the first place?  What’s in it for me?  Acting like I owe you or something.  Shoot.  Homegirl be trippin.

I know! I know!

I’m always trippin.  It’s cool.  It’s how I move through life.

This is valuable to me, because it’s the only way I am personally able to understand how I stand out from the rest of the world.

And truth be told, I feel like the ability to connect at a personal level has become lost to our world.  More and more I feel people no longer understand what that actually means.  We don’t talk to people anymore, we talk at them.  We walk around with our guards up 24/7 to the point that even we ourselves no longer know how we personally feel about things anymore.

We are losing who we are as individuals in the process.

Personal feelings, perspectives, and experiences are valuable to everyone.  But from the moment we are born, we are told how to feel and see everything, based on other’s perspectives and experiences.  In school we are taught how to see the world from the perspective of some vague “them”.  We’re told that to get along in life, you better have the perspective of your employer.

At no point are we encouraged to understand who we are as an individual or guided to understanding how to best incorporate that gift we bring into the whole so that we may all benefit from it.

No . . . we insist on perpetuating the dysfunction for everyone FOREVER, because fuck the individual.

This approach and attitude, is killing humanity’s spirit as a whole.  We are all dying from it.  I don’t want to die from that.  I want to die from too much happy or by rainbow or something.  I don’t know, but I don’t want to die because of *this*.

I want to understand my gift as an individual and I want to find the best way to incorporate that into the current structure so that as many can benefit from what I have to offer as possible.

So . . . I have to start somewhere, and this is where I’ve decided to start it.

Okay wait, first I have to go pee, and then I’ll start.

 resume cat

Jenn’s Big Day Out (:

So I’ve been out and about in an effort to keep the momentum going in my “Live, damn you, live!” personal tour.

Last Sunday, I went to go see a movie. *At* the theater! I went to see Maleficent. And it was magnificent. I did not regret my choice in going at all. I may even go a second time.

Princess Maleficent

Friday, I stayed after work and had some wine with co-workers. A new friend and 4 new book recommendations later, I went home feeling happier than I had in a really long time.

wine dinner

Yesterday . . . yesterday I *may* have over-extended myself in my new-found enthusiasm. This is a typical Jenn-maneuver, so no big surprise there.

I went to the Starbucks near my house instead of the one in downtown because I wanted to purposely have to get out of my car and walk amongst the people instead of my usual drive-thru.

Star Fucks

While I sat waiting for my drink to be done, another customer was in such a rush that they didn’t bother to listen to the kind of drink being called, and slammed their straw into my Venti Iced Chai Tea Latte as the barista said repeatedly to the man, “Is your drink the Chai Tea?  The Chai Tea, is your drink the Venti Iced Chai Tea Latte?” until the straw stabber guy realized that oh, that’s not his drink.

I was sitting nearby texting and decided to keep on texting while I decided how I felt about some stranger stabbing his straw into my drink.

Wonder woman

I mean, he had that straw unwrapped for quite awhile before he tried to impregnate my drink with it and I don’t know what kind of hygiene habits this guy has.  But at the same time, is it really such a catastrophe that I’m going to make the barista make me a completely new drink because of it?

Avoiding the issue was the right decision, because when I looked back up, the drink was gone and a new one was being made.

dog starbucks

So I hopped back into my car and headed to my favorite little café gift shop in town.  In my head I was hoping to run into some old friends and it would lead into some sort of Bollywood music number.

Devdas

But the reality of it was that I just quietly walked around and bought a bunch of (awesome) things for myself and bought a pastry called a ‘Soul Roll’.  I did get to snag a half-hearted hug from a friend in-between her giving readings . . . so that’s *almost* like a Bollywood movie, right?

Next I had ran into the craft store next door because now I needed two frames for a couple of art pieces I had just purchased, as well as a hook to hang up the butterfly wind chimes I had also just bought.  This is where I just went nuts.  I *didn’t* measure the art pieces to know what size of frame to get . . . I just walked in and bought what I thought looked like the right size.

This was dangerous territory I was walking, folks.  You see, I hate . . . and I mean HATE having to return anything.  So much so that I just won’t do it.  If it doesn’t fit, or is the wrong size, or wrong whatever . . . it’s going to end up in the charity bin.  I hate having stuff I don’t use or want cluttering my house.  That’s how my world operates.  I also hate being wasteful.  So between all of these nuh-uhs of mine, I am *very* careful with what I purchase.

So here I am buying stuff I didn’t need for my absolute survival, which is quite a big day all on it’s own.  But then I was walking out of a craft store with these frames that might not even suit my purpose!  Just what kind of crazy path had I put myself on?

Motivate me

So, by this point I’m sitting in my car sweating.  Well, mostly because it was like a hundred thousand degrees out and I had decided to start texting ninja hugs to a few peeps, and it just couldn’t wait long enough for me to roll down windows.  When I get the urge to ninja hug text someone, I have to ninja hug text someone immediately!

But then to keep from dying because of the near heatstroke I suffered by doing that, I had to get back to a Starbucks stat.

starbucks brat

Then I realized that it helps even more if I put the AC on in my car.  I know that sounds like I’m trying to be funny, but I actually try to avoid the AC in the car if I can stand it because it has this smell that doesn’t go away for awhile even after you shut if off and it gives me a headache and then I become all dramatic and like I’m going to die and then I have to switch my ipod to one of my ‘contemplative’ playlists where Natalie Merchant is singing about ‘The End’ or Johnny Cash is all ‘Hurt’.

But it was incredibly hot and so the AC had to come on.  I get over to the town center shopping mall and no sooner do I park, when my friend Carmen called to give me a verbal ninja hug . . . which I said, “Well, now it’s just a verbal assault.”  I decided that it was best to stay in the car with the AC rather than face the Death Valley temperature happening outside.

Melting cat

We talked for like two hours!  Again, I need to put this in perspective.  I HATE talking on the phone.  I have this weird brain delay thingy when on the phone that makes it feel to me like the person is speaking a foreign language to me.  But just like the earlier insanity that had ensued, I was breaking my own rules.  The first few minutes I had to focus like a bomb squad trying to diffuse a ticking bomb . . . but then something switched (the bomb squad was successful?) in me and it was like I was listening from a different place in me and I was able to focus easier.  It was kind of nice.  The conversation itself was AWESOME!  All kinds of epic topics and zooming over a huge variety of things.  Just how I like it.

After I hung up, I didn’t want to waste a trip there so I got out to at least walk around the shopping center.  I love this shopping center during nice weather because it’s outdoors, which I used to think was really stupid for the Seattle area . . . but then global warming came and now we have mostly awesome weather and I was like, “Ah, never mind outdoor shopping mall.  You knew what you were doing.”

So I went for a stroll, and thankfully there was a wind to keep it pleasant.  I wandered into the game and puzzle store, because . . . I can never have too many puzzles.  Something to remember about gaming stores on hot days, and most especially when there is some sort of tournament going on inside, is that you have to brace yourself for the inevitable wall of body odor that is going to smack you upside your head when you walk in.  It’s just a part of life and something that you have to come to peace with inside of you.

I did find a puzzle.

And I also got to watch a parade of teenagers dressed in formal attire, nonchalantly walk around a shopping mall in broad daylight trying to act like they weren’t dressed in ball gowns and suits walking around a mall just to show off how good they looked.  And they did.  The dresses were super pretty.  I wondered if I had ever been that skinny.  I can only remember having a mom body at this point in my life.  {Shrug}

By the time I got to the car, I was starving.  I wanted good food and I did not want to have to cook it because . . . heat.  So I went to get some take out from a Thai place by my apartment.

Too much

Okay, the place is a little expensive . . . but they definitely don’t skimp on the portion.  I can easily squeeze 4 meals out of it for myself.  My son can make his last two . . . which is impressive.

I asked for a 2 star spicy . . . which is mild to medium.  My son gets 4 star because I think he’s trying to burn himself from the inside out.  However, both of our meals were pretty damn spicy.  I nearly cried the whole time I was shoveling the food into my mouth.  I was so bleeping hungry, but it was so bleeping hot that.

It required an immediate Twix ice cream bar to put out the fire in my mouth.

It was starting to get late, but I wanted to take care of the things I had bought earlier.  So I hung up my wind chimes.  I framed the two art pieces, and then hung them.

Self Reflection and Joy

Finished the laundry.  And then the cat was meowing for me to join him on the floor, until . . .

God knows how much time had passed before I realized I had just been staring blankly at this:

 Ceiling

With my feet like this:

Feets

Exhausted doesn’t even begin to express what I was experiencing.  I had no idea how exhausting it was trying to have fun.  I need to slow it down a bit until I build up a tolerance or something.  Until then, I’m going to have to balance it out with my usual recluse nature.

batcat

Speaking of which, it’s far past my bedtime.  Goodnight!