**A little disclaimer: If all things astrological leave you rolling your eyes and mumbling about ‘hippy, new-age, folksy nonsense’ then it’s probably best to stop reading at this point and come back for the next entry as this one will be full of astrological shenanigans!
I’ve always been quite interested in things like horoscopes, even though I take them with a fairly large pinch of salt. My horoscope is usually the first thing I read in a magazine but do I really think they’re accurate? Not at all. Nine times out of ten the little comments are so general that anyone could apply them to what’s going on in their life at that moment and lo and behold your horoscope is spookily on target!
So, I’ve heard about astrology (I’m a Leo-lady: so that’ll be bossy and stubborn but with really good hair!) and the Chinese zodiac (the year of the…um…pig. Of all the animals I could have been – tiger, dragon etc – I got the pig. ) and I’ve even had a look at runes and tarot cards but I’d never heard of the Saturn return.
My thoughts exactly when it was first mentioned at work by my friend Jen. It was around this time last year that Saturn first popped up in conversation. Apparently (and for a much better explanation and all things generally Saturn-related take a look at http://saturnsisters.com/), it takes Saturn 29.5 years to orbit around the sun and so just before your 30th birthday Saturn is coming right back to where he was when you were born. Unfortunately, Saturn’s early birthday presents aren’t the greatest and having just about survived my own Saturn Return I think I can safely say that Saturn is the bringer of some seriously tough love.
Your particular Saturn lesson depends on the zodiac sign Saturn was in when you were born – Libra for me, which meant that from December 2011 until early October 2012 I was going the learn all about criticism. Yup that was going to be the main theme of my Saturn Return: criticism. Apparently, this was going to be a transformative 10 months in which my life would be turned upside down and I would be a stronger, happier person at the end of it, if I paid attention to what Saturn was trying to tell me.
How much could happen in 10 months?
In early December 2011 I split up with my long-term boyfriend.
From Jan – May I hit the roughest patch I’ve ever had in my career.
Some old, long-term friendships started to fall apart around the same time.
And was there criticism?
You better believe it.
Family, friends, colleagues, vague acquaintances. Suddenly it felt as if everyone had a problem with some aspect of my personality. When things were at their worst in March and April I felt like starting a deli-counter style ticketing system: ‘Please take a number and then wait your turn to tell Lauren exactly what you think of her.’
So what to do with all this criticism? Well, pre-Saturn my tried and tested mode of dealing with criticism was to ignore it and in true Leo-style plough on stubbornly with whatever I was doing.
But it sounded like Saturn wasn’t going to let me get away with that.
So I decided to try and separate the critical wheat from the chaff. What was useful criticism and what wasn’t? Turns out there was quite a bit of useful stuff, mainly involving the need to develop a more positive attitude and stop automatically seeing the negative in every situation.
And, of course, there were a few bits and pieces that I won’t be changing anytime soon (sorry you don’t like my hair, mum, but I’m not going back to blonde!).
Anyway, I did my best to pay attention to whatever Saturn was trying to say and the upshot of all this is that now, just a few days before my Saturn Return comes to an end, things are pretty good.
I got back together with my boyfriend and we’ve just moved in to a lovely apartment together.
In mid-September I was promoted at work.
And looking back, being single for a while and living in a flat-share means I’ve made lots of lovely new friends.
So I guess there was something to all the Saturn Return stuff in the end – though I can’t say I’m particularly sorry to see it finish! That’s me free from Saturn for the next 29.5 yearsJ
Saturn trundles off into Scorpio on 5th October so if you have any last-minute snarks or criticisms to throw at me, you’ve only got 5 days left to do it!
And if you were born between August 25th 1983 and November 17th 1985, good luck – you’re next in line for a visit from everyone’s favourite planet!