Present Tense

On JUST DOING IT…

Early morning musings as I listen to cello music shuffling on my Echo, thanks to Alexa fulfilling my wish. She is like a genie in a bottle.

I got a new tattoo yesterday; what I think is a very beautiful, stylized, abstract depiction of the most beautiful of the planets, Saturn.

In mythology/astrology, the god Saturn is all about hard work, discipline, timeliness, rules, strong foundations, boundaries and as I’ve written before, he strongly forces us to “get our shit together”. He reminds us that time is short; we aren’t here forever on this earth.

He has saved my life over and over again, as I tend to reject many of the above structures now and again, often to my detriment. (But then again, often, to my delight and expansion!)

What better way to express my gratitude and honor his influence than to commit him to my skin. Now, it’s not a perfectly accurate depiction and I’m hoping with him being a stickler for the rules and all, he will allow me some wiggle room on this.

I thought about this tat for a long time and researched designs and artists. I sat with it for about a year. I had even made an appointment with another artist in the spring and cancelled at the last minute. But, I knew I would get it.

Well, the time seemed right as Saturn entered the sign of Capricorn in my 12th house (I know mumbo jumbo to most of you…let’s just say it’s significant as I move forward into my second adulthood….for further insight, just ask. I’ll talk astrology forever…).

MANY of you have expressed to me something along the lines of “I want a tattoo, but I don’t know what I want. It has to be the perfect design. I want a tattoo, but I’m afraid it will hurt or I want a tattoo, but I want it to have something to do with my kids”.

Here’s the deal. Stop talking about it. Stop making excuses and if you REALLY want one, get one. It’s very simple. At the risk of being sued by Nike, JUST DO IT!

A tattoo is very personal. What speaks to you? What represents you? What motivates you or activates your core values and beliefs? Or what are your hobbies? Your passions? What symbolizes the path you want to follow or motivates you to be a better person, if that’s your goal?

And it doesn’t HAVE to be perfect. Nothing is perfect and if you have several themes you want to express, get several tats.

And yes, it does hurt. Some places more than others. But what DOESN’T hurt in life? The phrase “No Pain, No Gain” isn’t just a bumper sticker. It’s a sage reminder that in order to get what we want or to express ourselves or fully live OUR authentic lives, there is sacrifice involved. Period.

So, now you see that I’m not really just talking about tattoos, right?:) And that in fact, I’m channeling my personal spirit animal, Saturn.

If you want something, you HAVE TO ACT! We all sit around and think and wonder and make excuses. Or wait for someone to hand deliver our dreams and desires. Lay the groundwork and get it done.

Saturn is cracking the whip and will be for the next 2.5 years in Capricorn. He is always working on us, but in this sign, it’s particularly intense.

So, waffling and excuses and ‘somedays’ just won’t cut it. You may already be feeling this and what I would encourage is that you follow it. Act on your urges to set some boundaries, build some structure and discipline, to even the smallest duties.

That is the flow that we’re in. Resistance to Saturn is futile. He always wins:) It’s taken me the better part of 50 years to get that message and now, he’s right there on my left forearm, reminding me: “Jane…time is short; get your shit together”.

January 7, 2018 Posted by | Musings | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Not to Be a Debbie Downer…

I’m a pragmatist.

That’s just how I’m made. I try to clearly evaluate and assess information before I act or form an opinion.

There are always two sides (or more) to every issue/discussion/event and a pragmatist tries to weigh all of those factions and then, act; not out of emotion, but out of what will actually work. That is pragmatism.

I guess what I’m saying is that due to all of the Capricorn energy in the world and in my own natal astrological chart right now, I can’t be anything else.

I’d love to wax poetic about what is ahead of us and how this year will be the year of love and light and solutions, but the pragmatist (and astrologer) part of me, just can’t.

I hate to seem like a Debbie Downer because I’m not in despair; I’m coming from a place where I am feeling strong, empowered and CLEAR on what is happening and what is in front of us.

I’m an optimistic pragmatist. I acknowledge that the glass is half full; now tell me what’s in it and can I drink it?!

This is not a year of hopes and dreams; it’s a year to put your head down and put one foot in front of the other, with the tools and circumstance that you have right in front of you.

I know. That’s no fun. That’s not my typical love and light message is it?
But, it’s just the way that it is.

Does it mean that this energy will last forever? No, it does not. Nothing lasts forever. Haven’t you been reading my previous blogs??:)

In fact, if we look honestly at how things work and manifest, it really does take that kind of work and discipline and diligence and in some cases, tunnel vision to get to the top of the mountain. (That’s a Capricorn reference, for those of you who get it. Capricorn’s archetype is sort of a mountain goat. Hard working, strong, determined, undeterred).

Great things and huge changes just don’t suddenly appear out of thing air. This is our year of labor and diligence and hard work and discipline.

Collectively, as we hold our leaders feet to the fire and personally, as we quit whining and waiting for our knight in shining armor to rescue us.

It’s time to work with what we’ve got and to work toward what we would like to change, but in a coordinated and sensible manner.

2017’s primal scream of rage is over. We’ve cried ourselves out:). Now, we must pick ourselves up, put on our lipstick and figure things out.

Personally, professionally, financially, mentally, spiritually; we must look at our health, our money, our habits and begin to deal with our rage in a healthy way.

The chaos around us continues, but we have to find our safe, sacred space to merely watch and observe and then, act in a sane and productive way.

Pragmatism demands that we have clarity and focus. We can’t deal with ‘what ifs’ this year. That kind of thinking exhausted us and fed the chaos.

This is about standing firmly on the earth, feet planted as a strong foundation and withstanding those hurricane force winds of change and turmoil.

Gird yourselves, heal yourselves, strengthen yourselves. We have a long and bumpy road yet to travel, my loves. That’s just the reality right now.

January 3, 2018 Posted by | Musings | , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

2017: The Year of Complete Exhaustion

Let’s face it: 2017 has been a completely exhausting year. We’re all worn out, mostly from the weird energies and ‘new normals’ that have we’ve been faced with this year.

I would love nothing more than to go into the whole astrological significance and transits and energies and how this is affecting our lives, but I know better. Many of you find that silly and confusing…so onward. (But, it’s fascinating and amazingly accurate, so maybe I’ll write about it later for those who are interested)

I guess the main theme and watchword for the past 12 months or so was ‘disruption’. As I watched the news or read about current events, my own mantra was “Nothing Makes Sense”.

As the year went on, this became something I repeated over and over to whoever would listen (usually my poor husband who is the main receiver of my insights and wisdom:) After a while, I started saying it with an exasperated chuckle.  Eventually, things got so crazy, you HAD to laugh.

We kept trying to fit this square peg of a year into the nice, round hole of comfort, security and ‘the way things have always been’. Try to do that physically and you’ll soon be banging that peg with a sledge hammer, creating an even bigger mess and problem.

This was the year that all of the buried shit in our culture began to rise up, like a plugged up toilet. The normal and expected result after we poop or pee is that we push the handle and it flushes it all away; out of sight, out of mind.

2017 was the year that we pushed the handle like we always do and suddenly the toilet tank begins to fill up.  No flushing! Holy shit! And I mean that literally.  Here it comes…overflowing…overwhelming…what do we do?

This was the year that we had to begin to see that our collective toilet is plugged. That we’ve pushed things down, underground, out of sight, out of mind for literally centuries.

Racism, sexism, misogyny, abuse, male domination, bigotry, religious zealotry, white supremacy/nationalism, violence, corruption, corruption, corruption, homophobia, ignorance, inequality of kinds; shall I go on?

You get the picture. All of these horrors have existed, but we buried them nicely, so that many of us who are not directly affected (and as we’ve seen over the past year, with #MeToo, etc. that nearly ALL of us HAVE been affected, we just felt powerless to speak) have been able to just whistle past the graveyard.

So, as we all stand here at the end of 2017, with the sewage puddling around our feet, now what? Do we get a shop vac and suck it all up? Do we get out our mops and sanitizer and make the bathroom sparkle again?

OR do we unplug the goddamned toilet?

Let’s stop shoving things into it, hoping to flush it all away. Let’s begin to allow unpleasant things to be seen, rather than buried or flushed.

This is the legacy of the past year AND of the Trump presidency. It was to disrupt and to force us to see who we are. He is our mirror. Ugh, right?:) But, that’s the hard part, isn’t it. Seeing our warts and prejudices and ignorance. Tough stuff.

Do I think he had this all planned out? Oh, for God’s sake, NO! But I see so clearly that this had to happen. We had to be shaken up. Do I like it? Not really, but I have gotten to the point where I understand it and see that it’s a necessary evil.

We can’t keep flushing away our problems…the septic tank is FULL.

So, relax this weekend. Reflect and try to see past all of our fears and discomfort and disruption of the past year. I know it’s been exhausting, but growth and insight and resolve take a lot of energy.

2017…you kicked our butts, but I think you lit a fire and for that we will look back in gratitude.

December 31, 2017 Posted by | Musings | , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

The Era of Stupid

I’ve begun to refer to this time in history as ‘the era of stupid’. To me, there is no other explanation for what is happening in our culture.

Watch enough cable news or read enough online postings and it becomes abundantly clear that the ‘enemies’ are smart, competent people.

We call them ‘elites’. Which to me, are people with decent educations, bright minds and a level of competency in their field.

But, in our current climate, that is considered suspect and even dangerous and a reason to toss them out of these positions.

God forbid that we have people in sensitive and importantant positions, who actually KNOW what they’re doing. Or have the ability to learn and innovate because they can ACTUALLY THINK and use big words. Oh, the horror.

We live in an era and a culture where people drive around with bumper stickers that say “My kid can beat up your Honor Student.”

The era of stupid.

When did we get to the point where education and brains became a liability? When did we get to the point where deep thinking and rational and interesting discussions became “Whoooooaaaa, egghead…that’s way too deep for me…here, have another beer and a jalapeño popper and chill…”

We are proudly ignorant! I hear it and read it all of the time.

And I guess we get what we want when it comes to leadership.

There is segment of us (that seems to be growing, sadly) who think that all we need is ‘hard work and common sense’, rather than those “Ivy League educated elites (code for egghead or anyone with a college degree…a derogatory term)” leading us.

Well, I’ve got news for you: 2017 was the year to realize that the ‘proudly ignorant’ (some of them with Ivy League educations) in positions of power, don’t always know best.

We’ve seen that “common sense” is relative and may not help solve a nuclear crisis that has been years in the making and that pronouncing that you can fix everything, without any previous experience, is probably merely a boast.

Walk into any bar and you’ll hear somebody sitting on a stool, carrying on about how he/she can solve the world’s problems or run the country or tell “Rocket Man” what’s what.

Most of us have the inner sense to know what we don’t know. I sure do. I have no idea how to solve most of our problems. Honestly, it’s waaaaay to complex for me and I know that I don’t have the background or experience to even unravel how we got here.

I do, however understand how we got here. How we fell into the ‘age of stupid’.

We had leaders in both government and media who appealed to our fears, our insecurities, our survival instincts.

They knew that there always has to be an enemy and they have played us like a fiddle. Most of us think that we’re not good enough, smart enough, fit enough, pretty enough, strong enough, wealthy enough….shall I go on?
That makes us easy to manipulate.

Now, don’t misunderstand. I’m not saying that you must have a college degree to be smart and competent. That’s not my point. My point is that there are people who just KNOW more than we do.

Journalists for one. For the most part, they DO have more information than I ever will. They swim in their jobs and are surrounded by the people that they report on. They ask questions, they hear things, they run down leads, they have sources. They KNOW STUFF.

Same for someone who has spent many years in any job, whether that’s government services or fixing air conditioners or trying cases in court. There is a level of expertise and competency that should be respected.

“Draining the swamp” has enormous unintended consequences that smart and competent people have been warning about.
I honestly am at the point where I don’t really care about Rs and Ds, Red or Blue; both sides are prone to corruption and manipulation. But, for the LOVE OF GOD, can we dig ourselves out of celebrating stupid?

Stop being so proudly ignorant. Stop making fun of the ‘brainiacs’ and deep thinkers. If something seems too “deep” or confusing or complex, take a minute to listen and think and even do a little research. Ask questions and attempt to grasp the concept. Learn something.

We have the entirety of the world’s knowledge in the palm of our hands on our phones, and yet, we revel in NOT KNOWING or even caring!!

So, it’s almost a new year. How about we try to make this new era, the “era of enlightenment”. You don’t need an Ivy League degree…It’s a little to late for many of us. But, let’s at least allow that smart is good.

Smart will save us.

December 28, 2017 Posted by | Musings | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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