“I don’t know what it is. I’m just not happy.”
“But you just got an apartment! You’re engaged! You have a job! You have so much!”
This is an honest conversation I had with someone the other day. It’s also a conversation I have in my head maybe three times a day.
I don’t know what it is but something is going on. Whereas I thought it was just a string of bad weeks, I’m starting to fear that this feeling isn’t a fluke. This feeling that I’ve lost myself – my personality, my motivation– just won’t just go away.
I don’t sleep well. I don’t eat well. I don’t love well. I’m constantly tired, stressed, paranoid or anxious. I don’t have the drive or motivation I had a few years ago and I can’t seem to figure out how to get it back.
While I most definitely feel better since last Monday, there’s still this nagging ache at the pit of my stomach.
I think it’s mainly from fear – fear that last Monday’s bleakness will come creeping back up, refusing to let me enjoy the people and the life around me. Fear that I’ll have more days like that than good ones.
I tell myself it’s not depression. It’s not bipolar. It’s being a woman. Or is it? That’s the million dollar question these days, isn’t it? When do your eccentricities, your mood swings, your emotional tidal waves become more than just “being a woman.”
Do you ever feel this way? Like no matter how good your life is, it’s just not enough? It doesn’t matter if you have the perfect apartment, perfect partner, perfect job…sometimes you’re just angry or sad or unfulfilled.
This is something I’ve been working through for awhile now. Being in a committed, adult relationship has forced me to take an honest look at myself. Because when you partner yourself with someone who’s cool, calm and collected every day, you’ll begin to wonder if you’re ups and downs aren’t so natural.
Because at this point it’s more than just a questioning of self, it’s a responsibility to someone else. My mood swings, my moments of anger and isolation aren’t acceptable all the time. As we’ve read and learned about countless times, our energy affects those around us. You can only project chaos for so long until the other person starts unraveling.
So what do I do?
I’m not sure there’s an exact answer or cure for this feeling, but it does help to know that I’m not just alone in this feeling. It also helps to think that maybe I’m just going through something. Maybe this is what maturation and growth feels like. Maybe this is the painful process that will bring me to my truth.
A friend recently told me about Saturn’s Return.
Every 27 to 29 years, Saturn returns to the sign it was in when you were born, a cycle called The Saturn Return.
During the Saturn return—which lasts 2.5 to 3 years—you will come face to face with your own blocks and be forced to push through them. All the “mistakes” you made in the nearly three decades leading up to this seem to crystallize.
The effects of the return itself can typically be felt the entire time Saturn is in the same sign it was when you were born, usually a period that will fall sometime between ages 27 and 30. During this period, you’ll be faced with challenges, and questions about the life you’re living and the life you want.
Understanding that you’re in this moment of Saturn Return provides a calmness to the internal chaos, however, it won’t solve it. That I must work on alone.
So right now I’m focusing on learning to appreciate the moment. Life isn’t always going to be what I want, but I need to think of all that I have that I did want at one time. So if you’re feeling like me and as lost and confused as ever, let’s take every day together…one day at a time. And in these days, let’s focus on appreciating what we do have and reminding each other of what’s great about the lives we’ve built for ourselves.
What Is Saturn Return?
Like Mercury retrograde, Saturn return is one of the astrological events that looms largest in our cultural imagination. Most people understand, in basic terms, that it’s a period of change and difficult growth that hits in your late 20s. Last December, Saturn moved from Sagittarius into Capricorn, where it will stay until 2020. This means that if you were born when Saturn was last in Capricorn (from about February of 1988 to February of 1991), you’ve just entered your Saturn return. But what is it, really? And what will it do to you?
During a return, Saturn’s energy can pull at you in an even more intense way than usual. It might ask you to know yourself in ways you haven’t so far. It might ask you to set limits for yourself. It might ask you to accept a new heaviness, a new maturity, a new sense of responsibility.
Saturn’s energy can help you to grapple with feelings of doubt or exhaustion. When Saturn returns, it’s a time for making a commitment to the way you want to live and to the work you want to do, conventional or ambitious or strange.
Are there structures or boundaries you’re willing to accept, in this next part of your life? This is what your Saturn return can offer you: new clarity, new perspective, and a new steely strength as you move into a new cycle of life.
Read more about Saturn’s Return