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My birth date is November 2, 1970, at 4:32 am, in Los Angeles, California. I desperately need some insight on how to handle my Saturn return. To be totally honest, I have feared this ever since I learned what a Saturn return was. I recently discovered that I was born during my mother's return (she was born January 28, 1942, at 6:00 pm, in Kansas City, Missouri). It has been difficult living in this house with both of us going through this at the same time.

I guess what I'm asking is: What would you suggest be my point of focus during this time? I feel overwhelmed with emotion all the time and I truly want to change my opinion that a Saturn return is a negative event. I am open to any and all suggestions.

Thank you in advance,


Dear TM:

Forget all the bad news you've heard about a Saturn return. And fear not. Saturn isn't the devil. And there's no need to dread its return.

Saturn takes approximately 28-30 years to complete its orbit around the Sun. And similarly, it takes the same amount of time to complete its journey around the birth chart. When Saturn returns to its place of origin, we close one cycle and begin another. The transition between these two phases is a period of distillation. Saturn says it's time to examine our life. So what's been ignored comes to the surface. What's being denied gets in our face. And we focus on who we are, where we're going, and what we want to achieve.

From a transformational perspective, our first Saturn return is an initiation into maturity. Put simply, it's all about growing up and becoming an adult. Most of us think we become adults when we're legally of age. But our twenties are actually a time of transition. We're out from under the thumb of parental supervision, free to make our own choices, and busy gathering life experience. The first Saturn return coincides with the end of this experimental period, and opens a portal to the next phase of life.

In order to make the most of a Saturn return it's important to understand Saturn's role. Saturn is about structure. Yes, Saturn has a bad street reputation for being a tough disciplinarian. But it is not essentially vindictive or punishing. Saturn is sober. Serious. And devoted to solid ground. Saturn sets limits and establishes boundaries.

Most importantly, Saturn sees what needs to be learned next. On the negative end of this discerning spectrum, the lens turns critical and focuses on flaws and imperfections. Saturn becomes the judge, pronouncing its verdicts in the rigid language of black and white.

On the positive end of the spectrum, Saturn is the teacher. Teachers don't blame us for not knowing. Quite the contrary, a good teacher automatically assumes the need for additional knowledge and helps us develop the skills to acquire that information.

When Saturn functions as a teacher, it sees compassionately and brings into focus the many shades of gray contained in any situation. What we don't know isn't held against us.

Embrace your first Saturn return as an opportunity to gather knowledge and soften harsh self-judgment or the self-righteous judgment of others. Use this distillation process as a tool to sort through what you've made of your life thus far. Then, integrate that information and allow it to motivate you into a new, positive attitude.

The second Saturn return (which your mother is experiencing) offers the same opportunities for growth but extends a slightly different invitation to wisdom. When we're in our late fifties, our perspective is different. The energy of youth is behind us. We're seasoned with experience and have a lot to reflect on. It's a poignant time. We can see the consequences of choices made in the heat of the moment. If we're happy in our lives, we're satisfied with our decisions. If we're not, we often hit a hard wall of regret.

The deeper opportunity of the second Saturn return is also a distillation process. It's the chance to move into the wisdom years, mentoring, sharing hard-earned knowledge and encouraging our children to live life fully.

You and your mother are at the same juncture, but with two entirely different goals.

Significantly, T., you have a Saturn-Venus opposition in your natal chart. This tense relationship speaks to a lot of self-judgment. Of course, your mom's Saturn is also exactly opposite your Venus, which indicates you would have perceived her as highly critical of you and emotionally distant. What's more, because we treat ourselves the way we were treated as children, you may have internalized your mother's critical voice and made it your own.

Your mother's birth chart also contains a difficult Saturn-Venus contact. (When we compare the charts of family members, we often discover they share the same astrological themes.) You and your mother are both doing soul work on issues of self-worth.

You have no control over how your mother resolves this issue. But you do have a say in how you heal it. Make every effort to drop rigid judgments aimed at yourself or others. You have the potential to become the lineage breaker in your family and free yourself from the harsh internal voice that continually tells you you're not good enough.

But that's not all: You and your mother are both experiencing Saturn returns as Uranus simultaneously squares your Saturns. Uranus catalyzes change, disrupts the status quo and will do anything to break down old, useless systems that no longer serve. Certainly, negative self-judgment serves no one. But letting go of old attitudes and belief systems is hard work. It requires devotion, discipline and determination.

You and your mom are also both fixed signs, which means neither of you gives up or gives in easily. Fixed signs hold on tight—at least until they're confident they've found a better way. Maintaining this energetic grip may be one of the reasons you're feeling emotionally overwhelmed.

One more bit: You've been through a lot of changes over the last several years. Uranus, in Aquarius, squared all your planets in Scorpio. And now, as part of your Saturn return, Uranus is also squaring your Venus. Because you have Libra Rising, Venus is your ruling planet and closely associated with your sense of identity. In a nutshell, you're being asked to shed one skin but you haven't quite grown the new one. Identity crises always make us hypersensitive. And this vulnerability contributes to your charged emotional state.

Synthesizing all of these energies all at the same time is hard work. But this is an extraordinarily powerful time. Make your Saturn return goal the authentic realization of your own true value. Use Saturn to get to the bones of what matters most to you. This cycle, while it coincides with your mother's Saturn cycle, is about you, not her.

If you're in therapy, devote your time to processing through how your relationship with your mother impacts your self-esteem and self-confidence. If you aren't in therapy, this would be a very juicy time to start a deep therapeutic process. Under the influence of Saturn and Uranus we have opportunities to make big leaps in self-awareness. What's more, you might leave behind the negative ties binding you to your mother and enter a period of independence and autonomy.



Ralfee Finn is the creator of The Aquarium Age, a weekly and monthly astrology column published nationwide and featured at Committed to compassion, knowledge and growth, Ralfee brings the gifts of clarity and common sense to the often confusing waters of metaphysics and new age philosophy.

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For more information about Ralfee Finn, click here.

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