Total Eclipse of the (Natal) Chart

I’m fascinated by astrology. I don’t know if I “believe” in it–certainly, I’ve found myself reading about retrogrades and transits and trines and what they all mean based on what planet is what degree, where, and thought “oh, that’s why my life is a mess!” But I’ve also regularly read my horoscope for ages now and, frankly, it rarely seems to apply.

Mainly, I read my horoscope in the hopes of something to look forward to, even if it never comes to pass. Any horoscope that says “Jupiter, the bringer of gifts and luck, is moving into your career sector” is immediately true, real, and absolute! For a while, anyway. Until whatever date(s) mentioned has passed without incident, and I continue in my day to day without thinking about astrology one bit.

Eclipses are especially whiplashy for me. Every time one is on its way, I read over and over again about how eclipses bring sudden, unexpected endings, especially to relationships. No one wants that (and if you do, you should probably be taking matters into your own hands, not waiting for the planets to push things over the edge). But for me, I have a special fear of exactly that. Call it paranoia, trauma, insecurity, whatever you want: most of my life there has been a cloud over all of my closest relationships telling me that any second now the person I care about is going to hit their limit with me and my bullshit and drop me like a very annoying hot potato.

I realize this assumes a lot of things, namely that people I care about are only tolerating me (for some reason). It’s not fair to me or the people I have relationships with. But knowing is not the same as feeling, and so it’s something I have simply come to live with and try not to believe when it slips into my head.

The November 8th eclipse has come and gone, and so far no one has blindsided me with earth-shaking news, letters of resignation, or any kind of break up. No one from my past has tried to contact me, either (although I did randomly get a song stuck in my head that my boyfriend in high school wrote and I haven’t heard in over 20 years). Astrologers say sometimes we feel the effects of an eclipse a month earlier (nope) or a month later, but that sounds like they’re just covering their bases at that point. We’ll see. If around December 8th there is a dramatic exit from my life, I’ll be sure to update you all.

In a roundabout way, this brings me to the point: I handed in what I hope is a somewhat final version of my novel to my agent this past week. Every time I hand in a revision I have the same general reaction: this is it, this is the time my agent realizes she made a mistake signing me, she’s going to dissolve our partnership and also tell me I’m a terrible writer, and probably a terrible person, too. (I hope she’s not reading this…) Do I believe those things about myself? No. Does it matter? Also, no.

Anxiety doesn’t care about logic. Anxiety cares about keeping you safe, emotionally or otherwise. Something I’ve known for a long time is that if I am going to continue to pursue my writing career, I am going to feel emotionally unsafe quite often. I have even considered that I might not want to pursue this career anymore because of the toll my anxiety takes on me, physically and mentally (but I’m a Taurus, so I’m pretty determined).

Like astrology, anxiety is always trying to predict the future. Unlike astrology, it doesn’t have a very good track record, and its basis for its predictions is often rooted in things that have already come to pass, or more often, nothing at all. For all the times my anxiety has told me to run and hide, it has never been able to predict the actual disasters I’ve experienced.

Astrology, on the other hand, at least gives me things to look forward to. Who doesn’t love when their horoscope says good news is on the horizon? Anxiety could never.

Which is probably why, when I’m especially anxious, I find myself obsessively Googling the most current horoscopes, moon phases, planetary transits, etc. I keep reading until I find a horoscope that gives me some good news to look forward to, some future kindness to take my mind off my current state of panic.

Anyway, this is just more of me airing my neuroses on the internet. Do with it what you will. (And fingers crossed for that latest revision!?)

Update, January 7, 2023: Jupiter, the bringer of gifts and luck, did indeed move into my career sector! (That eclipse also had some bearing, but that’s a private matter 😅 )

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