By Amanda Moreno
I’m sitting in my bedroom, on my bed, trying to write. My bed is pushed up against two big windows, affording me a view of my backyard from two floors up — a backyard that is currently being besieged with gusty wind and pelting rain. It’s a perfect late-October Seattle day.
I’ve missed the rain and moodiness so much, as we’ve had yet another year of seemingly endless summer. I’m also grateful for the moments right now that are allowing me to just sit and breathe and sink into myself, something I’ve been avoiding for a few weeks.
So thank you, Planet Waves, for providing me with required ‘sit-down-and-reflect’ time each week! And my apologies for being MIA last week. I don’t like doing that.
Between mid-August and mid-October I felt the light coming back in after the onslaught of Saturn in Scorpio. That transit was everything I dreamed it could be and more — and some of those dreams were, in fact, more on the nightmarish end of the spectrum. Luckily, one of the beautiful things about being a believer in astrology is having a knowledge of timing, cycles and purpose.
I can’t understate, however, just how shocking it was when that light started coming back in — in a positive way that just made me want to play! That remembrance of what it’s like not to have a tourniquet twisted around my emotional body provided me with a sense of momentum that was sorely needed.
I’m not naive enough to have ever thought the transit was over completely, but I so enjoyed that two-month period of feeling more like myself than I had in years — but better, somehow. Stronger, more centered, more in my power.
Then I experienced somewhat of an…aftershock. It came in the form of a death in the family. It wasn’t a death that was entirely unexpected, but it was traumatic and still had that ‘out of the blue’ feeling to it. My family is no stranger to sudden, traumatic death. After all of the writing I’ve been doing about patterns and complexes, this sure did provide the opportunity for me to revisit some of those. Again. Thanks, universe!
The grieving process on this death was punctuated with my body giving in to a cold. Not a bad one, just one that forced me inside, with a focus on self-care. It’s so interesting to me that when ‘bad things happen,’ our society encourage us to ‘take care’ of ourselves by indulging a lot of the time. For example, in my case: death happened, girlfriends came over and then took me out for nachos (my favorite) and margaritas (the cucumber one was amazing). Are nachos and margaritas the best thing I could offer my body? Probably not. Did they help my soul? Yes, almost as much as going to see live music played by some of my best friends.
But still, there is a dissonance there. My inner six year old is pretty into mac n’ cheese at the moment, and my current 35-year-old self is weighing out a cost/benefit analysis in terms of the havoc that might wreak on my gut — while also wondering if an almond croissant might help.
I wouldn’t say this has been an intense grieving process at all, however. I said goodbye the recently departed a while back, as I’ve had to do with so many blood relations. The initial grief period has been spent a little bit disassociated, going through the motions, paying a lot of attention to the totally rad coloring books my roommate brought me while watching “Sister Wives” and “The Leftovers,” and feeling grateful that my various employers are fairly aware of the cycles of my life so far (which tend to include a fairly consistent amount of crisis), and are extraordinarily supportive and patient.
I have, however, been more in touch with my own triggers around death and loss — and lack of feeling connected to a family. Also, some deeper questions are arising that I’m not quite prepared to go into just yet, be it here or even just with myself, in my own room, watching a storm.
Part of that unwillingness has to do with giving myself a little more time to just let my defense mechanisms do what they’re doing. Part of that unwillingness has to do with observing the ‘old scripts’ coming back in, and not wanting to charge them up, even though they can seem valid at times. Which, I suppose, is why part of that unwillingness comes from the surreality of life at times, and a need to grapple with the fact that, yes, another series of events just happened that are painful and hard and that seem to just… keep happening in my life. I’m not quite sure what to do with that.
Well, yes I am. For now, I observe the fact that I feel more settled into that reality and able to cope. I continue forward, feeling grateful that I don’t feel like this event and these past few weeks indicate a total departure from the feeling of lightness and emergence, just a little detour. I’m existing with the knowledge that I don’t really want to tell the story of this death — whether that is because I’m denying it, or just because I need more space from it and from people’s reactions (which are rightfully heavy, especially if they know my history).
I remind myself that we are headed into the dark season, that the veils are thin (as evidenced by a bunch of things jumping off of my ancestors altar last night, thankyouverymuch), and that I have a pattern of emotional intensity — if not all-out distortion — at this time of year.
Life is so weird, so surreal, so beautiful, and sometimes so downright hard. Sometimes I really hate thinking in terms of patterns and sometimes I’m grateful for the awareness of them, even when that doesn’t seem to change them.
Happy Samhain, y’all. May we learn what we’re meant to, and may the souls of our ancestors and loved ones move into the light.