Mercury Direct! and what gets me through the retrogrades

Well, villagers, I don’t know about you, but this holiday season was a doozy. Shall we blame it on Mercury Retrograde?

For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, I guess I need to tip my hand: I am totally, and unabashedly into astrology and metaphysical things of all kinds.

While I didn’t aaactually become a Wiccan after being inspired by The Craft (I am a Halloween Baby, after all), it got my elemental mind going on all sorts of rides on energy and the universe.

Right around that time, this awesome crystal shop opened on Greenwich Avenue in the Village–Crystal Gardens–and I started my crystal collection and self-education on their metaphysical properties. (The shop is long gone now, but Stick Stone and Bone is just as awesome.) I peeped my mom’s Tarot decks from the seventies and would give myself tarot readings. I’d play Ouija on a homemade board with my closest gals to learn about our past lives (not a game I’m comfortable playing anymore). And, while the tarot never stuck for me (I still love getting a reading! Info to come!), I became a firm believer in the properties of crystals and how energy works.

It was only natural that astrology would be my next love.

But we’re talking about Mercury Retrograde.

In simplest terms, Mercury retrograde describes the time when the planet Mercury appears to be moving backward in the sky, in the reverse direction of its orbit. According to astrologists, it is a time when communication breaks down between people, tech problems abound and things just seem to stall at every turn. (For a much more detailed analysis, check out this article at Astrology Zone.)

Well, villagers, the last retrograde cycle was from December 19 until January 8. THE ENTIRE HOLIDAY SEASON!

Unfortunately, my personal retrograde started two days early when I got slammed with the flu. Then the flu turned into bronchitis (unbeknownst to me) and by New Year’s Eve, I was still. Just. Sick. I won’t go into the details, but after a week of antibiotics, steroids, so much syrup and all of the probiotics, I’m finally almost out of the woods. But, in the process, I missed my good friend’s baby shower, was laid up for my entire break from teaching (too sick to get down with my creative self, which was The Plan), and I basically took a three-week-break from the people I love the most during the times I most love to see them.

But there’s another thing about Mercury retrograde. Despite its trickery, it can be a time of growth.

I try to look at it as a time to recalibrate and be a little more mindful of my actions. When things go wrong during Mercury retrograde, I take the note to slow down and find greater intentionality in the things I do.

I try to cut myself slack, as well as everyone else around me.

This retrograde cycle, I slowed down because I didn’t have a choice. When I had a little energy, I made a few goals. And in all the time I’ve spent resting at home, I’ve focused on making healthier choices. I have a feeling that this time they will actually stick! Remember that whole prehypertension thing? Well, I am definitely recommitted to my health, and doing my best to actively shed the habits that aren’t working for me.

Not a bad silver lining.

How was your retrograde? Thanks for reading. 🙂

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