Little Lion come out to play

My astro reading for today:

It may seem like neither side of the bed is the right side to wake up on today, Aquarius. The only solution may be is just to go back to dreamland if you can. If you can’t, focus on your heart, because it is trying to tell you something. Emotions may be running high, so be careful how you treat yourself and others.

Prior to reading this I sat down to write, but I am pulled at the same time by another tug (which side of the bed should I be on active or passive or).

I awoke late and after a long conversation with a friend where I was pulled away by hunger pangs I ate and then, the desire to write but another pull from my body. I need to go to the toilet and wash my face. In the toilet I see specks of dirt, debris and fluff on the floor, I go to clean them up. Then I feel the pull back to writing.

I am conscious of a past time when I sat down to write or draw and there was a frenzy of cleaning going on around me. I grew to fear the vacuum cleaner, just as my dog Jasper does. The moment I whip it out I watch the look on his face. I warn him of what is about to happen. He has been drawing close for a cosy moment but his Mum is needing to clean the place.

If I listened to my heart I may not want to put him through it and just let us both rest and be cosy. But there is a need to clean, to make sure my room is ordered, that there is not too much mess lying around. It is not really part of me, this ordering, it’s a conditioned reflex and it becomes part of an inner dialogue that tears me this way and that. That said, sometimes taking action brings new energy to my day and blows out the cobwebs and ordering things on the physical level is like the ordering and sorting process going on inside.  And sometimes chaotic, disordered things erupt in order to be revealed..

I am writing this in an attempt to come to terms with the twin pulls, before reading the advice to listen to my heart. Over the past few years I have become ever more conscious of the inward voice of self judgement. I am conscious too that as a Neptunian I often let things slide into mess and chaos because I have been drawn down, so deeply down by the inner world of my subconscious and body that it has become hard to operate and to my mind things have been let go.

An outsider would probably come into my house and find it tidy, my conditioning says otherwise. I battle with this and with the inner voices that would disparage something that brings me joy, disparage a creative chaos thay may have gifts.  The heart, if it was in the right space would not always care about the mess or see it as a mess. I am not a mess, I am just human but that said, sometimes I am messy and that is part of being a vital alive human being.

These days I feel myself pulled between sadness, tiredness, heaviness and happiness, lightness, joy : a need for active energy, relationship, expression. I wrote yesterday of how currently I feel I am in the process of learning to walk a tightrope, to get the balance right. I need to be deeply centred in my world at present (and yes, Deborah, that means listening to your heart).

Most of the inner planets are presently in either the 12th or 1st houses of my chart. But in my natal chart the balance of my personal planets are on the other side in the opposing houses 6th and 7th. Is it any wonder that I am feeling tugged back and forth at present?

Lately I have been hearing a voice that is telling me I need to listen to my body. I can’t stay too centred in thoughts alone, if they lead me astray. Listening both to my head and my heart is necessary as feeling can sometimes trip me up when its not the sensible thing to do reach out to the hurting person who has some lessons to learn from sitting in that hurt. But my heart says otherwise.  They hurt me but I can still feel for them even though angry and I question my own point of view, how ego centric is it, but I must remember to take care of me.  More aware of hurtful places to my heart energy I can steer clear. But my heart tells me, we are all still learning and growing.  At least those of us who choose to open our hearts and our minds.

As usual writing is helpimg me to contain my own feelings, and understand them, but sometimes it is easier to hear my heart when I am not writing. Still, for me, writing is like the prism I construct by turning things this way and that in the light in order to appreciate and understand them. It helps to centre me. While I am typing I can let things flow out from within that I might not even have known were there had I not set fingers to keyboard.

But I also need to leave self imposed solitude in order to interact because often, only then do my emotions make themselves known. My heart interacting with other hearts that are either open or closed (I will know by being with the person).

Lately I have been becoming even more aware that due to my particular energy and life experience there is a lot of myself that I repress. This repression was part of not being allowed to express, part a result of being left alone without validation, mirroring.  It was sometimes so hard to understand what was going on. My turning deeply inward was a result of there often being no one to turn to but myself. Harsh things happening had to be kept inside. There could be a fury or a storm brewing in my mother, most especially, injuries could be a result. It was busy, busy not a lot of time to rest and be contained so emotions got turned inwards and festered.   I turned them over and over and did not know where to go with them and they became a jumble which I am only in the past few years sorting out.

I am conscious too of a particular bruising inside that is making me feel the need for self protection while I sort all this out. Without a deeper relationship to my instinctual and emotional depths and with the hunger I was a ravenous person looking in all the wrong places for love. Maturity could only come through making lots of mistakes. Mistakes were what showed me the path I was on was damaging and it took a lot of years to figure that one out.

It is hard sometimes to reach out and sometimes it is just cosier being wrapped up in myself, able to focus on my own life. But over the past few years I am reaching out to others who help me to nurture my heart. I think that is what is being asked of me at present. I feel happiest when living this way. I am a bit of a loner, really, due to the traumas I have been through and my particular childhood. I think there are rich gifts around this but I absorbed invalidations of it by my mother and others who did not really see what I was going through and how I was trying to grow.  I took those in and swallowed them but the got stuck in my gut on the way down and I have been trying to spit them out ever since.

How many times was I told that there was something wrong with “isolating” when really I was just retreating to listen to a heart whose messages were being confused or drowned out by all the introjected voices in my head.  I was desiring to express and grow through developing a relationship with my inner life.

I am learning now to spit out those false interpretations. I am conscious that at present I need gentleness around me, around the self that sometimes suffers, because the gentleness provides the healing balm to that suffering, to a nervous system that was dysregulated through much stress and many shocks, some of them the result of struggling to find support while seeking self protection.   I must seek out gentleness as that is most what helps my inner nature to flourish.

There is a time to be strong and assertive too, which does not always come easily. There is also a growing need to learn how to articulate distressing or hurtful things and address them in a healthier way than screaming.

I am a bit of a screamer. I scream because I am often not really heard. I watched a similar thing with my last narcissistic partner’s youngest son. The frustration that built from being used, not being treated gently or mirrored, from struggling to be recognised and heard. When I recognise what the scream is about it is easier to make decisions that don’t expose me to frustrations and hurts that trigger me.

I must also be aware that sometimes people will interpret a scream when I am trying to communicate something with a passionate intensity. The passion contains real juicy life blood and energy. I have been mocked and disparaged for my passion. But I am glad that now I can own that I am a passionate person with deep feelings..

I mentioned passion and the Sun has moved into fire over the past few days. I hear the rumblings of the Lion as he awakens from his sleep buried deep within the 12th house of my chart. I am looking forward to his meeting with Venus in mid August.

The Lion/Leo is associated with courage in French this relates to the word for heart. The Leo might get a bad rap for narcissism by those who feel a bit threatened by it, but we all need some heathy narcissism to survive and take action to nurture our heart. In our particular family it multi-generationally it was this energy that got repressed (thus it is in my 12th house).

There are huge themes of self sacrifice which I associate with Neptune and my mother’s generation had Leo in Neptune they had to sacrifice the inner child to be quiet, keep deep emotions and feelings wrapped up tightly. And they gave birth to a generation with Pluto in Leo, dark events transpired in the collective at that time. The Pluto in Leo generation, of which three of my siblings were born had work to do to overcome that conditioning.  I’m a Uranus in Leo baby no wonder my mother found that energy too intense to cope with.

Well a blog about something else has turned into something else. Little Lion would you like to go out and play? Little child would you like to hold my hand and dance in the flames of passion, joy and happiness?. What happened to you over years little one? Please come out of hiding. Take my hand and let us play, and dance in the sunshine.  Adult is here to guide you.  We can grow up and still stay young at heart and the heart can still be deep and true.  Wonder child, not only wounded child.  Wounded child learning how to heal and tend those wounds with good grace to grow and flourish a soul that knows the full spectrum of it all and can feel joy.  These energies now I think are calling for air time, that is what my heart is telling me.   Feel the wind in your hair, dance along the windswept lakeside pathway and then come home to rest and warm yourself by the fire.

Tending the Inner Garden

Getting all bent out of shape… I was reflecting on this expression this morning after reading a wonderful blog about the impact of growing up with narcissistic parents I was reflecting on the idea of not being accepted as I am and therefore having had a difficult time accepting and loving myself.

At times there is a running commentary in my head which is comprised of a number of voices, what psychologists might call “introjects” voices of those around us in our life which did not support, accept and nurture us, but rather berated us with our inadequacies, highlighted our defects and made us feel that who we are is somehow wrong.

I have been aware of these voices for some time. In fact over 10 years ago when I chose to go into isolation as a result of a lifetime of traumatic experiences and the breakdown of my marriage I did a piece of inner dialogue writing which I called “Destruction 11/11”. It was around this time I would look at the clock at certain time to find that often the digital display showed 11:11…

A weird piece of synchronicity : later I read a piece of writing that claimed that when we on a path of inner emotional growth and spiritual development (Not a lofty spiritual aim but the quest to uncover, live and express our true spirit) we will see these numbers.

Back to my earlier train of thought. In this long piece of consciousness writing a strong voice came through that was full of hatred for me and wanted me dead. The voice told me how it had come into my life around the age of 6 to protect me but also to cut me off from peace, joy, love, connection and acceptance.

It is interesting to me that shortly after writing this piece I met a person who would personify the critical voice. In a dream I had when I met him there were a number of women around me trying to warn me that this person would betray and confuse me. Dreams are often warnings.

There was an element of mistrust anyway for me due to many difficult experiences with people who lacked understanding and empathy but also I think my experience in life with these kind of relationships was testing ground for me in which I could learn more about myself and about others what was healthy and what was not.

The relationship which I just mentioned and which brought me so much angst due to this lack of acceptance was actually a projection of my own inner sense of not being good enough. Rather than stand up to criticism and stay true to who I was in this relationship I tried to change, to twist and bend myself out of shape.

Despite major lessons around this I can still do this. Part of me wants to be the nice person, to be accepted, to do the right and loving thing (whatever that is… its all subject to interpretations, expectations and often projection, I have learned).

As an empath I feel the pain of others and want to ease it.  Having had so much of my own pain makes me ultra sensitive, most especially to ostracism and exclusion. I have had major lessons to learn about my limits to do this for others. At times it is hard enough loving and caring for myself.

Lately I have been in a very supportive therapeutic relationship with a person who understands me deeply, sees into to me in a way I have found it even difficult to do for myself.  Witnessing my ongoing struggle with narcissists she has been pointing out to me my tendency to let those who hurt me off the hook and to keep getting retraumatised as a result which is not really loving to myself.

Why do I do this? Because I don’t care enough for and love myself enough. I also have a running commentary going on in the mornings about how I am a failure in that I have not got a job or a relationship, and that from the outside it looks like I don’t even have a life. Part of me is traumatised by this and then another partner knows it is BS, these voices are not mine.

It was pointed out to me yesterday by my therapist I have in fact been through so much that the rest of my life should really be devoted to caring for and loving myself, the work I engaged with, have been engaged with for some years is inner work, from the outside it looks like nothing much is going on, but inwardly I am digging deep in this dark night of the soul.

The tendency to beat myself up inwardly, to see myself as less than and elevate others is well entrenched. That attitude is also an internalisation of a number of programmes from my family and catholic education.

Last week I came across a beautiful book at the library called Garden of Bliss : Cultivating the Inner Landscape for Self Discovery.  In this book the author speaks of a secret garden which we all have inside, a place where we can find peace and enter into a relationship with our deep soul, she also speaks of the Inner Gardener, that part of ourselves which is a witness to all the voices, that is connected to intuition and dreams and has an inner wisdom that does not rely on collective judgements.

As someone who has always found a connection in nature and loves gardening the idea of an Inner Garden appeals to me greatly. My happiest times lately seem to be pottering about in my garden with my lovely dog Jasper close by and connecting deeply to my inner garden through writing, listening to music, working with dreams, reading, cleaning, sorting, pottering quietly and resting peacefully within my own space. When engaged in this way I feel less alone that I do when out engaged in the busy world.

And yet I am increasingly feeling that I DO belong in this world. When I am deeply connected to myself, even when I take time to listen to the inner voices, critical as they may be, I am in touch with myself and my humanity. Through this sense of introversion and connection I feel extraversion is possible as I connect to the world. When I tend the inner garden, messy as it may be with all the challenging voices I am at home within myself and in relationship with myself and through that relationship I am connected to humanity.  For now my work seems to be in tending this garden and in seeing the deep value that comes from having a relationship with myself and in not bending myself out of shape by giving power to voices that do not speak the truth.