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Down the Rabbit Hole


Necessary Losses










“The one who does most to avoid suffering is, in the end, the one who suffers most."

                                       -    Thomas Merton

When Uranus arrives at a significant spot in the birth chart it brings the opportunity to be free - to claim your individuality and express yourself authenticity. The “Great Awakener” wants you to sit up and take notice. Uranus is not a subtle planet and it will do whatever it takes to get your attention…right now, right this minute! And that includes eliminating anything that stands in the way of changes that need to happen in order to create space for the freedom and growth it wants to deliver.

Well, Uranus did just that when, in March of 2022, it arrived at my Eighth House for what is to be a decade-long residence.  During this time it will meet up exactly with the five planets residing in the part of the chart associated with deep, transformative change and growth. When I talk about activity in the Eighth House I often use the metaphor of the caterpillar entering the cocoon and emerging as the butterfly, stripped of all that stood in the way of that evolutionary empowerment.  In other words, Alice was needing a crash course in individuation, in becoming the person I was born to be; in (re)claiming the parts of myself I had neglected or given away; in giving myself what I needed in order to get it all done.  And it was going to involve stripping some things away in the process.  

I was newly in my 80s and clearly a late bloomer.

As an astrologer, I knew this was coming.  What’s more, I also knew, because of other influences active in my chart, that if I needed a wake-up call or course redirection I would get the message in the area of health and well-being.  So, in the years leading up to Uranus’ arrival, as Covid intensified its grip on our planet, I took a personal inventory and took action.  I went back into therapy.  I gradually reduced my wine and caloric intake and refined my food choices until I totally eliminated the drinking and lost about 30 pounds.  I stopped taking new clients except under special circumstances. And…hardest of all…I started to make changes in my core relationships.  Clearly, it was too little, too late.  The galactic rubber mallet hit on the head came last spring with my cancer diagnosis, and the race was on to “Ace” the Uranian curriculum.


Let me digress for a brief moment.  This Uranian passage was going to happen, inevitably and absolutely if I lived long enough. Had I been “ready” for it, it could have delivered unexpected (a Uranian signature) opportunity and success and validation: A great-grandchild to carry on into the next generation.  A new publishing contract.  A big lottery win.  All manner of wonders to be grateful for. Instead, I got cancer.


The first planetary connection occurred when Uranus met up last year with Saturn, the planet that represents stability and safety and the solid foundations we rely on to feel secure in this lifetime.   Think of it this way: If you’re putting an addition onto a house, the existing foundation may need to be demolished so the expanded house can be solidly supported.  Demolition is messy, and disruptive, and unsettling, but once it’s over and the mess is carted away, the substructure can solidly support the expanded building.  That’s how Uranus operates when it comes to Saturn.   


Enter Alice’s necessary losses:

The no-brainer: the health, well-being, and lifestyle consequences of the cancer diagnosis. 


The redefinition of my 40-year marriage. It had become increasingly clear that I could no longer be Don’s caregiver and assure his complete safety, so the decision to move him into assisted living was reluctantly but finally made and put in place the week I learned about the cancer diagnosis!   We had made plans to ease that huge transition and then my health issues rocked that wall of the foundation even more. 


The suspension of this mission-driven work that I love, work that is a huge part of what defines me. I had to stop seeing clients and no longer had the time nor the focus to keep up with writing and communication. 


The realization that I need to downsize.  Supporting and maintaining our deeply-loved, modest home requires efforts and resources that exceed my abilities to provide them now that I am the only person living it.  My brain knows this.  My heart…not yet. But I am one lucky person.  I can look forward to a great new address that, little did I know, would be waiting for me: a small condo that we got decades ago only four blocks from the ocean at the Jersey Shore.

Stepping up to necessary losses is not easy, not by a long shot.  And not knowing what you’re making way for only adds to the distress. But trying to ride out the disruption or actively resist necessary change is not only futile (Uranus will only “up the ante” and increase the disruption to the status quo you’re trying to maintain in order to get your attention), it can cause you to miss the “golden ticket” opportunity that “The Great Awakener” is trying to deliver. It IS waiting for you, like the light at the end of a tunnel that can’t quite illuminate what’s beyond the exit, but is glowing strong all the same. The “Angel on the Roof” messages that I wrote about last time constantly remind me of that light. 

Astrology’s great gift of providing context and insight for what’s going on - things like the timing of it, strategies to manage it, “heads up!” advisories as to potential pitfalls and detours - has given me a shot in the arm of the courage needed to confront the challenges.  And we can - and I have done this - call on the inner Leo that each of us carries within us somehow and in some degree, even if it’s not our Sun Sign.  We can “Act As If” - as if we are brave and confident and optimistic and ready to meet the challenge.  We are!  

And remember, energy we stimulate only gets stronger and stronger. Ask me how I know:)

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