In my last post, I described how the myth of Chiron has been used in classical and contemporary times. Read here: https://wp.me/p9O661-cy
This post will focus on the personal meaning Chiron has for me.
“I search your profile for a translation
I study the conversation like a map
’cause I know there is strength
In the differences between us
And I know there is comfort
Where we overlap
Each one of us
Wants a piece of the action
You can hear it in what we say
You can see it in what we do
We negotiate with chaos
For some sense of satisfaction
If you won’t give it to me
At least give me a better view”
-Ani Difranco, Overlap
I was born with Chiron rising, ten minutes below the horizon, an auspicious spot in the natal chart called the ascendant. Aldebaran, the right eye of Taurus, had just risen, one degree above. Unlike peaceful, healing Chiron, Aldebaran is warlike, associated with Archangel Michael, leader of heaven’s army. My 12th house natal sun is also four degrees away, a conjunction described by Vivian E. Robson in Fixed Stars and Constellations in Astrology as “Great honor through violence with difficulties and casualties.”
An ascendant conjuncting the Sun, Chiron, and Aldebaran is not easy to describe, much less live with. There is a lot of transformative energy contained here, at the very place in my natal chart which acts as the doorway between my self and the world. I often find transformation through my relationships with others, or others find me as a target for projections of their own perceived weakness. Just being my own, confident, charismatic self has often been enough to trigger violent reactions in those around me. I have encountered men on the street who saw my long hair and slender frame as feminine, and then became angry at me for turning out to be a man. One actually said to me, “You need to cut your hair! I was looking at your butt until I realized you were a dude.”
I have seen this on the roads as well. There is a certain interaction which has occurred to me many times, where another car passes me dangerously, cutting in front of me, and rather than yield and brake, I remain inches from them. They then aggressively brake their car in an attempt to force me to rear-end them, come to a stop, open their door, threaten me, and then drive away. I own that I am also acting recklessly in these moments. I usually see it coming well before it happens, and maintain my course. I sometimes feel we’re all playing interpersonal chicken, asserting ourselves as the victim, and the other as a narcissistic abuser.
Destruction is the only path to regeneration, the old must give way for the new to thrive. Chiron directs me towards vulnerability and letting go of my desfensive psychological, spiritual, and relational barriers. Aldebaran demands I challenge others to examine their own wounds, and the walls they have built to protect themselves. Hurt people hurt people, and my karmic destiny seems to lead me again and again to stand in the path of destruction of someone directing their inner pain outwardly in an attempt to avoid revealing to themselves the underlying trauma.
At its best, I feel it brings a pattern of mutal destruction of unhealthy boundaries to my relationships. In its shadow form, I am reminded of the song “Mailman” by Soundgarden. “I know I’m headed for the bottom… But I’m riding you all the way.” I have struggled with the balance between love and hate, vulnerability and self-protection, accepting responsibility and victimhood. I struggle both in setting personal boundaries and allowing others to set their own, because I know, in relationship to one another, exploring boundaries is essential for growth. But safety and trust must always be present when breaking down our deepest fears into meaningful lessons, and I have failed many times in maintaining my trust, as well as my ability to remain a safe partner, worthy of trust.
In the fallout of a conflict, I am always reminded of the fact that we as individuals each have a responsibility to own our role. We all have work, and it is neverending. With Chiron transiting Pisces, I learned to retreat. Perpetually giving the benefit of doubt, I walked away from unresolved disputes and took what lessons I could from them. I trusted my antagonists to do the same. I lived forgiveness, and maintained the hope that giving the other the space away from our confrontation validated their perspective, even if I disagreed. Somewhere along the way, though, I realized that I was not standing up for myself. I was creating the end of our relationship by being too quick to forgive them, while never truly forgiving myself first. I was not showing myself love by holding to my own principles, and inevitably suffering from a lack of self-esteem which manifested in passive-agressive ways. I would become unhappy, a victim who then subconsciously created further conflict to replay the situation, then acquiescing again out of fear. I clung to others, afraid to lose the joy and sense of mutual growth partnership provided me.
Then Chiron left Pisces. April 17th, 2018, I was experiencing a tremendous emotional breakdown. I had been fired from a job I worked for twelve years, and I had lost a partner who meant everything to me. She expressed that she was leaving partly to work on herself, and partly because I had stopped doing my own work. I was devastated. I had spent weeks crying all day, unemployed, directionless, and alone. Without knowledge of Chiron’s movement from the world of Oneness and surreal surrender to Aries, the sign of personal drive and energy, I began a whole new routine. I started eating healthy. I quit smoking cigarettes, a self-destructive habit of fifteen years, and began running every day. I sifted through twenty years of poetry and began writing again. I deleted my facebook account, which had become an unhealthy addiction. I started this blog, posting an original poem every day for seventy days in a row. I started school again to pursue a new career. I was still crying often, and mourning the loss of my partner, but I was learning to be in my feelings without letting them control me.
I had gained twenty pounds, and just won a local 10k. I was running fifty miles a week and doing two hundred pushups a day. Then, one day while running, my feet found a piece of wire coiled up in some grass. Both feet lassoed, I went straight to the sidewalk. Bleeding but still feeling invulnerable in my new body, I finished my run. I knew something was wrong halfway through when I attempted a pushup and couldn’t support any weight with my left arm. By the time I got home it had swollen and I could no longer bend it at all. It was broken, and my routine shattered with it. Chiron had retrograded, and reminded me again, true self love is not based in this world.
I met someone new shortly after breaking my arm. She was incredibly loving and strong, and we fell for each other quickly and intensely. Our first dates ended up six or seven hours long, and we were soon spending most of our time together. I began my new job, something I feel proud of, full of meaning and purpose. Soon thereafter, on September 25th, Chiron danced backwards into Pisces again. My old ex reappeared in the form of a string of angry and accusatory text messages. My new relationship fell apart fiercely over the next few weeks, the themes of abuse and victimization playing front and center.
Since then, Chiron has returned to direct motion, and I have been exploring my need for attention, and codependent behaviors. I am returning slowly to writing, and attempting to find that elusive work/life balance. I am back to smoking cigarettes, and don’t cry as much as I want anymore. But I am prepared this time to watch Chiron pass the finish line of the Zodiac, to move from shadow to light and begin a new life, and I plan on following.