March 12, 2021

As the New Moon approaches I always look through the book “New Moon Astrology” by Jan Spiller to see what areas of focus I want to take on my meditation. She recommends looking at the sign the moon is located in to align with the energies. As I look at Pisces I’m reminded how gentle and non-aggressive the energy of Pisces is. The calm before the Aries storm of “me” energy. The 12 signs are like a song that starts off strong and has various highs and lows throughout and ends softly only to begin again like Beethoven’s 5th. All I can say is “be warned!”

I love astrology not just because of the personality typing but also for the evolutionary development it proposes. My south node is in the 10th house which implies that in a previous life I was a high performer and career-focused and because it was in Gemini I likely was skilled at communicating. My north node is in Sagittarius/4th house both imply that learning and philosophy/truth are supposed to be my focus in this life but also understanding my roots and being very attached to quiet home life. It is important to spend some time reflecting on both the north and south nodes. The south node comes easy for us and is like the worn-out rut that we just can’t seem to get out of. I have spent far too much time in my life dedicated to earning money. Obviously, I felt I was doing it for the good of my family and spent it on their care (being faithful to the 4th house stellium I have) but it was not being true to my ultimate purpose in this life. When we ignore our purpose and choose to remain in what is comfortable, we not only do ourselves a huge disservice we hurt those around us who are not receiving the benefit of the growth we should be sharing with them.

There is nothing more sad than to meet someone in the late stages of life that have refused to grow, refused to meet life’s challenges head-on, or simply just has not become the best version of themselves. However, that is more common in my life than not. I hesitate to bash my family of origin, but as I look at their development I see people who have basically dug into their south node and fought tooth and nail to retain it.

Since I left my husband last summer, I have spent a great deal more time with my parents than I have in the last 10 years. Granted for 3 of those 10 years I was estranged from my mother because she has extremely poor boundaries and continued to hold me responsible for her feelings and needs even though I had my own family and children to take care of. That period of withdrawal from my mother took me down a path of psychological growth and personal development. I learned everything I could about boundaries and how to handle conflict and what was a healthy way to interact with someone if they are not meeting your needs. I focused on working on myself, hammering out how I could be a better mother, wife, and human but it then became more obvious how those around me were not aligning to those healthy standards. Fortunately, I was also working on my spiritual growth so I have not felt the need to point out and punish those in my family for not being healthy, but it hasn’t been easy. When you find the path that feels right and aligns with what you feel the Universe calls you to be, it makes it hard to align yourself with others not on that path. No one will ever be perfectly in alignment, and we have to open our hearts to people who struggle, but we don’t have to continue to invest energy in unhealthy relationships with people who have no desire to be the best versions of themselves. I left my husband not because he wasn’t a good person, but because our paths no longer aligned and I am not going to try to force someone down a path they don’t want to be on.

What do you do with your parents and children, though? I can easily say with my children, I will suck it up and do everything I can to remain in their lives in a positive way. I suppose if they were very unhealthy I would limit the amount of investment, but they are always my children and always deserve my love and attention as they desire. That may be my 4th house stellium talking again. However, I have struggled my whole life on how to approach my relationship with my parents (especially my mother) because it is so difficult to have a healthy relationship with them. After the 3 years of estrangement, we settled into a relationship where we just don’t talk about feelings. I maintained boundaries and she terrorized my children with her constant need for validation, but we found a “happy ground” where we could spend time together. In the last 8 months living apart from my ex, my mother and I spent a lot more time together. Admittedly, I do not share my heart with her and keep the amount of information about my personal beliefs and hobbies to a minimum. She is a very conservative fundamental Christian and if anyone has views outside of hers she seems to take it as a personal attack. How can I be fully open and present to a person who would get vicious and angry if she knew I no longer consider myself a Christian and am highly absorbed in understanding astrology, energy healing, and alternative spiritual practices?

For various reasons, I have not been in much contact with her over the last month. We met last weekend to have breakfast and instead of approaching it with hurt and expressing herself in a healthy way that she didn’t understand why I had not reached out much in that time, she went back to her pre-estrangement days of attacking me personally and viciously trying to get me to make her feel loved and adored. Because of the amount of growth I’ve experienced, I think I handled it well. However, I could no bring myself to make her feel better. I felt understanding for her reaction, but no sympathy for her pain. There is so much more I need to work on, and so many areas that I fall short, but one area I am proud of is my desire to let my children be who they need to be. I have two boys, one full adult and one who is not legally an adult but close enough to be considered one. They have all kinds of quirks and personality “issues” they are working on, but I love them dearly and don’t try to force them into my mold or control their reactions to things. Being boys, I have no expectation of how often they spend time with me and delight in them when they do. Conversely, they do want to spend time with me and we have great conversations on those occasions. I practice my healthy conflict skills when problems arise and only assert my authority when it is absolutely necessary because they are old enough to decide (most) things for themselves. My teen-daughter is another story because I still need to parent her, but she still receives respect and when we have conflict we work through it in a manner that is not abusive or detrimental to her self-esteem (or so I hope!) It is those experiences that give me confidence that although I’m not perfect, I am learning and open and compassionate with my family.

I don’t expect to be able to work through the answer to my dilemma here, nor do I want to be estranged from my mother again. I spent time away from her not to change her, but to develop my boundaries and heal my wounds so that she no longer had power over me. I feel through our conversation that I was successful with learning both those things. However, when someone sets expectations of you that they have no right to set and then tries to hold you accountable to those expectations without being open and willing to compromise or negotiate, it makes things impossible. I could be passive aggressive or even fully aggressive, but those approaches are not in alignment with who I want to be. I’d like to take a compassionate stance that something drove her into this place of protection and the inability to satiate her own needs without getting forceful and angry toward those in her life. The problem is that I am her child. If it were anyone else in the world, I would know how to handle the relationship, but being her child means that navigating the relationship will never be easy. I hate no-win situations. When I say “win” I don’t mean being right so much as resolving it in a way that feels good to me. I prefer win-win situations and she will not allow that. If I benefit she feels she has lost and if she benefits she makes sure I feel I have lost. How do I work with that?

Therefore, I will meditate on my Pisces energy and ask for wisdom and likely find a way to navigate my dilemma.

December 26, 2020

Uncovering the Authentic Self – Week 1

One of my paths to self-actualization according to my astrological reading is to develop my communications skills both in written and verbal mediums. I came across a DailyOm course on “Uncovering the Authentic Self” that asks a bunch of questions weekly to help you look back and see trends and various roadblocks in your past that will help you clear the road for the future. I intend to review these questions and do my best to engagingly introspect. Feel free to join me!

What is standing in your way right now?

Over time I’ve realized that I am the only one standing in my way and that is usually a huge hurdle to overcome. I have spent a great deal of time, energy and money to determine who I am and it seems that is a never ending topic. I seem to fight against my own inner-knowing and brush it off as too easy or over simplified. The truth is, if I would just take myself seriously I would have a much easier time.

However, as I do look back over my history and compare it to my astrological chart and what they “predicted” I still think life would have taken a different course than my intuition would have allowed. For example, I knew I had to be a mom. I didn’t really want to, in the beginning, but something said that it had to happen for me. I thought I would only have one, and that would have shaped me very differently than having three did. I unconsciously ended up having to dedicate myself to my children and my family (as my 4th house and half my planet placements dictated) rather than dedicating myself to my career (as my south node was trying to move me away from.)

Now that I know what my chart says my growth points are and what I can expect from the 2nd half of my life I can navigate more consciously and avoid those things that I know are not congruent with my true self. However, psychology still plays a big part in things. As I was reading today in a horoscope analysis I purchased on AstroDienst, my struggle with both myself and my chosen partner in life is my desire to work out my “daddy issues”. The absence of my father in my childhood now leads me to desire a surrogate and it really resonated with me that my desire to find a new husband stems from my desire for someone else to give me meaning and purpose and be that ideal father-figure that I can admire. Crap! I need to get really comfortable with taking care of myself and depending on my own resources to find security and meaning before I can successfully find a new mate.

What would happen if you overcame the obstacle?

I have worked on my daddy issues. Around the time my 2nd son was born it started becoming very clear I could no longer release my dad from responsibility of his absence in my childhood. Yes, my mom was the dominant figure in my life but he chose to not participate. It took me a long time to work through forgiving him for not protecting me from my mother’s emotional abuse (she is a solid Scorpio) and even longer to forgive him for not actually being a father on any level other than financial provisions (he is a star Capricorn). However, I still admired him to some degree until I had an all-out war with my mother and chose to stop talking to her for a couple years. Even though he knew how crazy she has always been, even though she was wrong on so many levels, my father still stood there and said that I was basically a disappointment as an adult. He said if I had only been disciplined more as a child, maybe I would have grown up better. That was the moment any and all disillusions of my father fell away and I saw him clearly. I saw him as a weak and selfish man who deserved my mother and was happiest when he was miserable. He felt superior in her insanity and my rocking that world and trying to better myself, or her, was unacceptable. He would never see me, the same as my mother would never really see me – only the fantasy of what they wanted me to be.

It never occurred to me that I needed to let go that my ideal for a man. I do realize that no man is perfect and no relationship will ever be roses and rainbows all the time. However, as I have decided to let go of my 1st marriage because he cannot see me, just like my parents can’t see me, I do need to be real about what I can expect if I marry again. If I could really understand my desire to idealize the perfect man as everything my father and my soon to be ex-husband represent are not, then I would be able to set the expectation a little more realistically. Honestly, that is my biggest deterrent for dating and why I’ve delayed filing for divorce. I know there is baggage and a great deal of compromise in finding someone to spend your life with after 40. I don’t believe in fairy tales or perfection anymore but there is still a strong disappointment to me when people fall short. I know everyone will fall short of my ideals and I don’t know how to live with the discord. I don’t want to accept something mediocre because perfection doesn’t exist and yet if I don’t I will get nothing.

Are obstacles really just fears holding you back?

Um, yes, obviously! But let’s review the facts. I have many friends I really can’t spend that much time around, but I hold onto the friendship anyway. I see their “quirks” and their issues clearly and I have learned to accept that it is not my place to try to fix them or hold them to any kind of standard. Some I truly respect and value, others are just fun to do stuff with. However, I have to limit how much time we’re together. A few I can travel with, but most I can’t be with for more than a few hours at a time. I’m finding that true with my kids as well. As they grow into adulthood, I find them difficult to be around all the time. I think it is the energy that they exude. Strong energies really tire me out and I need a lot of downtime to find my own energy again. My mother taught me that when someone around me has a stronger energy I needed to back up and sit quietly. I find it hard to show myself, my opinions, and my desires when I’m around someone who is stronger energetically than I am. If they are weaker, I can stand up more but I also have an aversion to people I find really weak. If I can dominate someone, I feel guilty doing so therefore I will hide my strength to protect them. So, it would seem there is a really small margin that I can operate as myself in.

Take-away

I think my take-away today is that I need to learn how to hold my energy steady regardless of who I am around. Perhaps dating is a great way to practice that since the majority of dates will “go away” and I don’t have to see them or spend time around them again. I have realized that my not engaging in conflict has not been healthy for me or those around me. They cannot every really know me if I never tell them what upsets me. I have a fiery nature that I need to allow to be unleashed. When people realize that they irritate other people, they have a choice to make changes. If they choose to continue to irritate people, then they will suffer the consequences of not having those people around – but it is still a choice and I am an adult now. I am not a child who needs to make everyone around me feel comfortable. Perhaps as I spend more time around people and practice using my energy to make room for myself, more people will be less difficult for me to be around.