Sep 7, 2011

"Wow, Baby Stars!"

Antares Nebula - A "Star Nursery"
My partner, Brad, and I went to a show at the OMSI Planetarium recently, “Journey to the Stars.” It had been a while since I’d been to one, and years since I’ve been to OMSI; it seemed a lovely diversion on a hot summer’s day to step inside the cool, dark dome to watch stars being born. Planetarium shows are generally geared toward kids, but Brad and I, who both have Gemini Rising, can easily turn into big kids and enjoy such things.  The show itself was pretty neat – lots of great computer graphics of stars turning into red giants, supernovas, and white dwarfs. We indeed journeyed through the stars and galaxies as the swooping camera took us through several nebulae, the “nurseries of stars.” 

What I enjoyed even more than the show, however, were the reactions of the children in the audience.  Almost every new image on the screen induced a “Wow!” or a “Whoa!” or a gasp of delight. My favorite comment was from an adorable 4-ish-year-old girl a few feet away from me in response to a nebula where, the narrator explained, stars were being born. “Wow, BABY STARS!” She shouted. Brad and I were still giggling about it hours later. Afterwards, I was so glad I went. I was reminded of my own fascination with the actual stars as a little girl, and how that had led me to astrology. And I was reconnected with something that is so easy to lose track of in the business of mundane life – a sense of awe.

In part, Astrology is a science. Astrologers for thousands of years have observed the movements of the planets and correlated these movements to events on Earth. These correlations were made in the hopes of being able to gain power through the art of prediction:  if one could observe the results of a planet’s movements in the past, one could possibly foresee future events. The science and the technical aspects of Astrology became highly developed so that the art of prediction could be perfected. Over time, ancient astrology developed many accurate and reliable prediction techniques.

 But Astrology is not only a science. At its core is a mystical awareness of the natural world and our connection to it. I remember an early astrology teacher relaying a story to me that one of her students, perplexed with something in a chart, had looked up from her paper during their tutorial one day with total amazement and said: “You mean, the Venus that’s here in the chart is the same one that’s out there in the sky?” While most of us are pretty savvy to the fact that, yeah, that’s the same Venus, this story serves as a reminder of how easy it is to get disconnected from what is meaningful about Astrology.  The chart is a representation of our connection to these amazing planets, and to this very real, medium-sized yellow star. When you’re calculating orbs, drawing glyphs, and interpreting the meaning of Venus conjunct Saturn, that connection can be easy to forget.

So, I take my experience at the planetarium as a little reminder as to why I started this journey in the first place. I also intend to spend more time out under the stars, something I’ve been “meaning to do” for too long. And, at least once while hunched over my preparation for a reading, I should remember a little girl’s voice saying: “Wow, BABY STARS!”

Aug 12, 2011

Mars and the Cardinal Cross: How You Doin’?

More than one client has entered my office this week with first words being: “What the (expletive of your choice) is going on out there?!?”  Well, I reply, in astro-lingo, we have Mars entering Cancer (as of August 3rd) and becoming the fourth arm of a Cardinal Cross formation, squaring Saturn and Uranus and opposing Pluto through most of the month. This peak of the Cardinal Cross energy is taking place during a Mercury Retrograde. And that, in non-astro-lingo, is the cosmic representation of what we might call a (expletive)-storm.

Hopefully I have not already offended anyone with my fake expletives, but I’m feeling very Mars-y these days. (Mars happens to be hanging out near my natal Mercury, and will soon be conjunct my Sun). Mars doesn’t care who is offended, and certainly has little regard for etiquette. Mars energy is direct, to the point, and fast.  It is also passionate, and can be violent. As Mars enters into the ongoing Cardinal T-Square, particularly in its current close orb the ongoing Pluto-Uranus square, it is the giant spark that’s just ignited a tinderbox of long repressed emotions (Cancer). 

At the end of July I wrote about the U.S. Chart and the Mercury Retrograde, playing at theaters near you for nearly the entire month of August. Of course, that was before the stock market roller coaster and the S&P Downgrade even began; at the time of my writing, the “deal” had not yet been sealed. In that newsletter I did not even mention Mars, as I had enough on my hands just dissecting the many potential unfortunate developments indicated by Mercury Retrograde’s aspects and Saturn’s contribution.  We have officially entered a very difficult and heated period wherein Mars is affecting the collective but is also very tied in to the United States chart in particular.

As you may have noticed, this past week has been kinda rough out there in the world; for example, the riots in London (!) And then we had the stock market dive, followed by the S&P downgrade, followed by huge ups and downs in the market and the predicted volatility. “Volatile” is a very Mars kind of word. While things seem to be smoothing out today with the market, what can we expect over the coming month in general?

The worst of the Mars-Cardinal-Cross energy is now dissipating somewhat; it was at its height between the conjunction of Mars to the U.S. Natal Venus on August 7th and its conjunction to U.S. Natal Jupiter on August 12th (as I write this).  This past week has been scarily reflective of that. However, today’s conjunction of Mars to the U.S. Jupiter can even be viewed as a boost toward more fortunate outcomes for the moment (today’s upswing in the market, for example). As Robert Hand writes of Mars conjunct Jupiter in Planets in Transit: “Mars-Jupiter has the general connotation of ‘fortunate action’ and is favorable for launching any new enterprise.” But let’s not get all excited and hopeful just yet. The U.S. chart experiences a 1-2-3 punch toward the end of the month:  Mars conjuncts the U.S. Natal Sun while squaring the U.S. Saturn on August 23rd – 25th, building to the final exact peak of the U.S. Saturn Return on August 28th. The combination of Mars-Saturn energies indicates frustration, real hardships, and the need for focus and discipline (Saturn) to keep the Mars shadow from running rampant. We definitely have some rough territory ahead, particularly around the end of the month, and we must proceed carefully and patiently as a nation in order to navigate these difficult waters.

In our own lives, this period of the heightened Cardinal Cross energies will begin moving out of orb by early September, at the same time Mercury will be direct and out of its storm.  Until then, hang tight. In the words of Bette Davis from one of my favorite movies, All About Eve: “Fasten your seat belts. It’s going to be a bumpy night.”

Related Reading and Viewing:

Jul 27, 2011

Fame and Addiction: The Chart of Amy Winehouse

Many of us might think we want fame. Particularly in the U.S., many young people would say that they hope to be “famous” for something someday (it is quite possible to be famous for nothing, however, as evidenced by the success of reality shows).  Yet, as we have seen, fame can be a monster. The list of those famous writers, actors, singers, painters and other artists who have also struggled with addiction is a long one. We take for granted that fame and addiction often go hand in hand. The same sensitivity and openness which allows the artist to express their creative gift is often accompanied by deep fears, insecurity, and depression. The trappings of fame seem to simply fuel the demons which may already exist within the creative individual. The success, notoriety, and wealth that fame supplies can cause the addict to self-destruct at an accelerated rate.

When I heard the news of Amy Winehouse’s death, my first response was, well, not a surprise. Then I was taken aback at my own cynicism. I have family members who have struggled with addiction, and perhaps her death hit a little too close to home, triggering my own fears. It makes me angry at the waste of a life and of a beautiful talent. After that initial cynical reaction, her death and the sadness of it started to seep into me over the past few days. I have been stewing on this relationship between fame and addiction, and the tendency of young artists to self-destruct. I looked to astrology to find some help in understanding the forces at play, and to understand this soul and her burdens. 

There have been many blogs and FB discussions out there about the transits on her death date, so that will not be my primary focus here, nor will I provide an exhaustive interpretation of the entire natal chart. I found that in looking at just a few potent pieces – the South Node, its ruler, and aspects to the Nodes and their rulers – we can understand quite a lot about Amy and her karmic relationship to fame and addiction. Here is the natal chart on the inner wheel (with the transits included for those who are interested). I have labeled those chart elements I've chosen to discuss.

Amy’s South Node is in Sagittarius. With the South Node, we should consider the shadow side of its sign as the nature of the past-life dynamic for this individual. We ask the question:  What was left unresolved in the past life in order for it to now show up as karma (South Node) in this life? False bravado, arrogance, and living to excess can be negative expressions of Sagittarius, or dysfunctional Jupiter (ruler of Sag.)  It is likely that Amy experienced a past-life scenario in which she was a bigger-than-life character. There is even an indicator of past-life fame with the ruler of the South Node (Jupiter) conjunct the ruler of her Midheaven (Uranus). The Midheaven is the cusp of the 10th House of Career, Fame, and Reputation. But her bravado and arrogance were false, indicated by her Sun in Virgo square the South Node, representing the deep insecurities that plagued her. In the past life pattern, the combination of fame and insecurity likely got the best of her, ultimately isolating her (Uranus) from those whose approval was so important to her.  Most of all, she could not approve of herself.

The pain of not measuring up (Virgo Sun square Nodes), whether that was merely a self-perception or a real lack of skill, may have led to addiction and escapism (Neptune conjunct the South Node).  Likely she became dependent on a partner or other significant people in her life, leaning on them inappropriately and demanding more and more from them as she became incapable of caring for herself (South Node in the 7th conjunct Neptune).  The wide conjunction of her Capricorn Moon to the South Node also expresses a sense of being ruled by emotions of neglect and abandonment.

If these themes sound reminiscent of her present lifetime, such is often the case when we look to the South Node.  It is difficult to escape the patterns of the past, as they are deeply ingrained in the soul’s memory. We feel most comfortable when repeating the familiar. The gift of astrological awareness is that we can, if we are open to it, learn about these past patterns, become conscious of them, and move actively toward transcending them.  Even small success in escaping the repetitive traps of the karmic past can offer a feeling of joy and accomplishment on a soul level.

The North Node and its ruler in Amy’s chart points toward the way out of the karmic trap:  Gemini, the 1st House, and Mercury conjunct the Sun in Virgo 5th house. Gemini in its highest expression is an openness of mind and spirit, a curiosity about life, and a willingness to learn and to explore new ideas. Conversely, the Sagittarius South Node indicates a stubborn attachment to a dogmatic belief system, or to one’s own ego as God. The 1st House North Node suggests a need to learn to stand on her own two feet, to assert her free will, and to let go of blaming others for her circumstances or in relying on others to fix them (South Node in the 7th).  Mercury as the planet square the Nodes, hanging in the balance, is a very important planet for her as ruler of her North Node, ruler of the chart, and ruler of Virgo, conjunct the Sun in Virgo.  Mercury in Virgo was the  opportunity to use her voice (Mercury) within a creative (5th House) craft (Virgo). The Sun in Virgo also indicates a need for humility and willingness to deeply commit to the perfection of one’s skills. Who knows what kind of talent she may have grown into had she had more time?

Ultimately, did she feel she was worthy of all of the attention that fame bestowed on her? With a Virgo Sun, it is likely that she often questioned herself and her abilities, and the Sagittarius South Node compounded the situation by enticing her into arrogant and defiant behaviors in order to cover up her fear (just watch the video for “Rehab” to get a sense of that defiance.) I feel compassion for this woman who was born into a time wherein fame, and all the baggage that comes with fame, made it nearly impossible to move away from the seductiveness of the old patterns. 

Note about her birth time:

Birth data is from Frank Clifford as stated on The Mountain Astrologer’s Facebook page; RR: A


Jun 30, 2011

The Three Eclipses – Part Three: The Cancer Solar Eclipse

The July 1st Eclipse at 9 degrees Cancer (1:55 AM PDT) forms one arm of the Cardinal Grand Cross formation, with Pluto, Uranus, and Saturn residing at the three remaining points of the cross (see chart).  These early Cardinal degrees were activated last summer during the much-discussed “Cardinal Climax” period, although upon reflection that time seems to have been a seeding of events that are now coming into full flower during this tumultuous year of 2011.  A New Moon represents a time of new beginnings within the themes of its current sign, and an eclipse magnifies those themes and casts their resonance forward for the next six months. This New Moon in Cancer puts the focus on nourishment, security, foundations, and family. 

The Grand Cross formation indicates this as a time of being at a “crossroads.” The presence of Saturn making a hard square to the eclipse seems to be saying “get real.”  It is a time in which we must make some potentially difficult choices.  This may sound none too pleasant, but there is a freedom available to us when we finally just do the thing we have been putting off and dreading because it’s “too hard.” When we take on difficult tasks, we are able to release the things that have been weighing on us.

Our sense of security (Sun and Moon in Cancer) is also challenged under this eclipse by a square from Uranus in Aries and an opposition from Pluto in Capricorn.  Uranus’ transit through Aries began auspiciously under the Japan Earthquake and tsunami in March; since then, things have not slowed down on the natural disaster front. The Cancer Eclipse is especially significant for the United States (see chart), as the Sun and Moon land right amidst the U.S. natal Sun-Jupiter-Venus conjunction, while squaring the U.S. natal Saturn (currently undergoing a Saturn Return).  Money and security are front and center right now as we approach the deadline for raising the debt ceiling. I enjoyed Barack Obama’s rather testy attitude toward congress in his press conference yesterday about the approaching deadline; he sounded like a stern father scolding his children.  He was the embodiment of Saturn energy, and perhaps that is exactly the medicine needed right now or our economy may be facing the hard consequences when the U.S. Saturn return reaches its last exact peak in late August.

The chart for this eclipse does not immediately give an overall warm and fuzzy feeling. However, we must remember that the sign of the Eclipse is Cancer, the Moon’s sign, so the lunar influence is extremely strong. The Moon links us to security, home, emotional connections, and family. Emotions will be running high during the time of this eclipse as well as during the two weeks afterwards.  For the collective, family issues are at the forefront.  A positive use of this eclipse period is to reconnect with your true family, whether they be your actual blood family or those you feel to be kin.  Remembering the emotional connections that sustain us can help to ease the tensions of this time.

Jun 15, 2011

The Three Eclipses – Part 2: The Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse

The series of three eclipses began with the June 1st Solar Eclipse in Gemini.  The energy of any eclipse is most profound in the days building up to then two weeks following the eclipse, but also may impact the six month period from one eclipse to the next corresponding one.  A full moon/lunar eclipse shines light on what has been in shadow, and this coming Wednesday’s lunar eclipse in Sagittarius shines light on the shadow aspects of that sign. So what Sagittarian things might now be coming to light?  The shadow expression of Sagittarius can show up as an over-developed sense of one’s “rightness,” or in only seeing the big picture while glossing over inconvenient (but important) details. We can fall into one of these common  traps when we forget to pay attention to facts and information. We can paint a picture of reality that fits with what we may want to be the Truth, but is actually only our own spin on a situation.

So, what should we be paying attention to, and where can we get helpful information during this period? The chart for the eclipse features several aspects from Mercury, ruler of Gemini.  Mercury is conjunct the Sun, opposed the Moon, and is moving toward a trine to Neptune.  Mercury is the messenger god, moving swiftly to carry information.  With his trine to Neptune, information may be coming to us via unorthodox means, such as our dreams and flashes of intuition.  Pay attention to odd coincidences and synchronicities, particularly if a particular message seems to be showing up for you multiple times. Look for patterns and listen to what message Mercury might be trying to carry to your ears. In my own life, I’ve had the work of a particular author recommended to me three separate times by three different sources over the past week, for example.  I took action on this message by ordering her books from the library. It is important for us to honor Mercury by taking action on the messages we receive.  If we ignore these messages, discount them, or don’t take action on them because we are “too busy,” we lose the opportunity to participate in the co-creation of our lives.

Jupiter, ruler of Sagittarius (and traditional ruler of Pisces), has recently entered Taurus (June 4th,) and makes two harmonious aspects at this eclipse: a trine toPluto  which will be ongoing through early 2012, and a sextile to Neptune, co-ruler of Pisces.  The light side of Jupiter/Sagittarius energy to embrace is hope, faith, and optimism. When we choose optimism, we become open to the adventure and mystery of Life.  The message of the opposition between Sun in Gemini and Moon in Sagittarius at this eclipse period is to balance the two signs within our lives: pay attention to what you are being shown, then use that information to make a Sagittarian leap forward in some area.  Life is as mundane or as magical as we decide to make it – it is all a matter of perception.

Jun 2, 2011

The Jupiter-Pluto Trine in Earth: 2011-2012

Jupiter enters Taurus, cooling his heels after a year-long trek through Aries on June 4th. Jupiter and Pluto will then be trine each other for about a nine month period from June 2011 through March of 2012 (with three exact trines: July, October, and March). Jolly, optimistic Jupiter meets brooding, intense Pluto…hmmm. At first glance, these two don’t seem too compatible. However, they are meeting by the trine, a harmonious aspect. The trine aspect also generally means that those planets will be in the same element. Jupiter is in matter-of-fact Taurus, and Pluto is in let’s-get-real Capricorn. So what happens when these two planets meet by a trine in earth?

Taurus is about our connection to the physical world, our bodies, and what we value on the material level. Jupiter in Taurus can help us to reconnect to the positive aspects of our physicality. What is good about life within these bodies? With Pluto trining Jupiter, we may also be confronted with where we have been neglecting our health, and perhaps healing is found in the simplicity of Taurus medicine – relaxation, good food, rest, and quiet.

Pluto also connects us to the cycle of endings and beginnings: in order for something new to be born, the old must die. Pluto has been traveling through Capricorn since 2008, and we have certainly seen the literal endings of governments and the crumbling decay of the world economy. But while Pluto connects with Jupiter, we might at least for this time more easily be able to see the advantage in letting go of the old, and become optimistic toward the birth of the new.

For the collective, a Jupiter-Pluto aspect will embolden both these planets’ energies on the world stage. We recently saw the results of the last contact between the two planets when they formed a square, exact on February 25th (and within orb for a couple weeks either side of that point.) February of this year was marked by an increase in the momentum of the Arab Spring, the uprisings in Libya, and the earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand. The Jupiter-Pluto square was most notably also still in orb at the time of the Honshu, Japan earthquake on March 11th. However, Jupiter was in fiery Aries, making a stressful aspect – a square – to Pluto. The upcoming trine between the two planets does not in itself carry the same signature of unrest, catastrophe and upheaval.

But even with a trine, there is always a shadow possibility – that each planet brings forward the dysfunctional behavior of the other. The dark side of Jupiter in Taurus is a rigid adherence to dogma, an over-attachment to wealth, and gluttonous tendencies. Pluto in Capricorn’s shadow, which we’ve had the opportunity to become acquainted with over the course of the past three years, is coldness, cruelty, and power-mongering. But ultimately, Jupiter and Pluto now coming together for an extended trine offers the gifts of healing and regeneration after a rough period. It is up to us to remain aware of both the opportunities and the dark possibilities, and to act consciously. Ultimately, it is a time to count our blessings, reconnect to the earth and its creatures, and remember where our “true source of nourishment lies.”*

*From the passage for the rune “Fehu,” The Book of Runes by Ralph H. Blum.

May 31, 2011

The Three Eclipses - Part I

Eclipses are part of the natural cycle, yet they also feel like an interruption of sorts. If you’ve ever seen either a solar or lunar eclipse, you might have felt the sensation of time slowing down. While watching an eclipse, we can connect with that moment; our attention is focused completely in the now.  This is also a period when the veil is thin. There is magic in the air in the days leading up to and moving away from the event. 

With the eclipses of June/July 2011, the moment-out-of-time quality is further magnified.  Eclipses usually happen in pairs – one solar and one lunar, two weeks apart, and thepairs then occur in a repeating cycle every six months.  But  we will now have a series of three eclipses in a row:

June 1st – New Moon/Solar Eclipse at 11 deg. Gemini
June 15th – Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse at 24 deg. Sagittarius/Gemini
July 1st – New moon/Solar Eclipse at 9 deg. Cancer

The last time we had this three-eclipse pattern was the Summer of 2009.  At that time they were in the sign polarities of Cancer/Capricorn and Leo/Aquarius.  I did a podcast on the topic with Gary Caton and a wrap-up episode on those eclipses on my own. Gary and I did a follow up on the topic last summer as well. 

I’ll be writing a bit on the eve of each eclipse, so let’s start with the first: tomorrow’s Solar Eclipse at 11 deg. Gemini. When Solar Eclipses happen, it intensifies the themes of the sign of that New Moon and extends the period of influence from two weeks to six months until the next corresponding Solar Eclipse in the opposite sign.  The end of this period of influence will be the New Moon in Sagittarius on 11/25/11. 

Gemini is about communication, particularly writing, speaking, and teaching.  But it is not all about the mental plane. It is also about the communication that goes on within ourselves,  between our conscious and unconscious mind. Gemini’s ruler is Mercury, who often has a playful Trickster energy about him. Watch for signs, omens, and synchronicities at this time. They may be indicators of what new project, venture, or Geminian-thing you should be nurturing over the next six months. 

We will also likely encounter the shadow aspects of Gemini. Chaos, scattered energies, the inability to focus, and opportunities for confusion abound, particularly as Neptune squares Mercury throughout the week of the eclipse.  At a New Moon, we are in the dark – and during a solar eclipse, quite literally so.  Become aware of the machinations of your own particular “monkey mind” so as to avoid the potential pitfalls of this time. This can be done through practices such as mindfulness meditation, for example.

However, Saturn comes to the rescue here, lending a stabilizing presence with his close trine to the eclipse at 10 deg. Libra.  Accessing the positive side of Saturn in Libra can provide us with helpful strategies for this time.  Some phrases to hold in mind are:  keep a level head, consider both sides of the issue, and own responsibility for your half of a partnership or friendship.

Further reading on this eclipse series:

For a political take on the eclipses of June/July, I recommend Jude Cowell’s blog, Stars Over Washington

May 13, 2011

From Aries to Taurus

Mars entered Taurus on Wednesday, May 11th, beginning the cavalcade of planets moving out of fiery Aries and into earthy Taurus.  On May 15th, both Mercury and Venus move into Taurus as well, leaving only Jupiter and Uranus in the Sign of the Ram.  There have been up to six planets at a time in Aries since about the beginning of April, and we now enter a cooling-off period after May 16th.  Aries energy, when used positively, can bring us to fearlessly undertake new beginnings, bold actions, and heroic efforts.  A high concentration of planets in any sign will inevitably bring to light the shadow aspects of that sign as well.  Some of  the dark expressions of Aries are violence, narcissism, and recklessness.  We have seen both sides of the Aries coin highlighted on the world stage.  In your life, you may have also seen these Aries themes playing out more personally as competition and anger (either expressed or repressed), or as a sense of urgency to start something new. For more information on the transiting Aries stellium, check out my article about the Full Moon in Libra in last month's newsletter.

But the upcoming Full Moon in Scorpio on Tuesday, May 17th, marks the shift of action into Taurus.  There will be four planets there: the Sun, Mercury, Venus, and Mars.  While Aries is about the fierce energy of birthing something new, Taurus energy is about slowing down to gather the resources we need in order to move forward with what we’ve started.  Taurus wants to dig into the ongoing task of feeding the fire that was ignited in Aries so that it does not run out of fuel. Consider what projects, relationships, and ideas were “born” over the past six weeks since the New Moon in Aries. What does this “baby” need to move to the next stage of its development?  Taurus energy is about gathering the things we need to ensure the survival of what we’ve created.

The movement from Aries to Taurus also signifies a movement from yang energy (assertive, active) to yin energy (receptive, attractive).  This is a time of making slower, more considered moves as opposed to taking risky and impulsive actions.  After the presence of so many planets in high-adrenaline Aries, Taurus-time is about quieting down and relaxing. The message of Taurus is to take your time, look around, and evaluate what you have.  Taurus connects us to the awareness of our resources, and appreciation of the earthly abundance in our lives.

Although the faster-moving planets begin to move out of Taurus in early to mid-June, Jupiter leaves Aries and enters Taurus for a solid year-long stint on June 4th.  In my June Newsletter, I’ll be focusing on Jupiter in Taurus and its upcoming trine to Pluto in Capricorn.  This ongoing earth trine, lasting for several months, will be intensifying our awareness of connection to resources, nature, and the material world. 

May 6, 2011

Moon in Cancer on Mother's Day

The Moon enters Cancer this evening at 7:32 PM PDT, and will stay in the sign of the archetypal Mother through early Monday morning.  It is apropos that this Mother’s Day falls under a Cancer Moon.  The energy of this sign will likely be heightened throughout this weekend, as the collective psyche turns its attention toward the concept of “Mother.”  No matter what your relationship to your own mother, or whether she be living or deceased, you still have a relationship to the Mother archetype. As the Moon passes through Cancer, you might ask yourself what the word “Mother” means to you. “Mother” can be a noun, or a verb.  We have a connection with our earthly Mother, but we might also have a connection to the Mother Goddess.  We might also reflect upon what it is to mother someone, to be mothered, and to mother ourselves.  The word Mother is multivalent and powerful, and throughout this weekend, a healing meditation might be to examine that word and your connection with it.

Mom and I, Disneyland '71
My own mother passed away in October of 2002 due to a brain tumor, and since then, I’ve had a difficult relationship to Mother’s Day. In fact, I’ve mostly ignored it.  And, as with most mother/daughter relationships, ours was complicated. Thinking of the past can bring pain as much as comfort, and I always tread gingerly when revisiting memories of her.  After eight years, however, some healing has been allowed to happen for me. My memories of our time together have become sweeter, more humorous, and lighter. This year, I finally feel inspired to “take back” Mother’s Day for myself.  I’d like to honor our relationship, and my mom herself, in some way.  I’ve decided to spend some time over the next couple of days snuggled up with a few boxes of old photos. I’ve been meaning to go through them for a while; this weekend with the Moon in Cancer, and with the cold and interminably rainy Portland weather, will be an ideal time.

Cancerian activities for this weekend might include revisiting memories via old family photos, and of course, spending time with family and with your own mother.  If, like me, you no longer have a living mother in your life, Sunday would be a good day to quietly honor whatever aspect of the mother you resonate with.  Maybe it is a day for you to mother yourself by treating yourself to something nice.  Or, maybe it is a day to perform a small ritual to honor your mother who has passed.  The sign of Cancer is not only related to mothering, but to healing. May your Mother’s Day be a time of connecting with the healing mother energy that is available to us all.