I really shouldn’t go here with this, and I am kind of smirking as I do: but I am re-binge watching the Hannibal series on Amazon. (Which, if you haven’t and you’re into such things, you should. Season 1, Season 2, and Season 3 are free for Prime members anyway.) Quick nod to the incredibly talented Dori Hartley- who I’ve not spoken to in ages, who got me into this series in the first place.
I binge things I’ve seen before while I do other tasks as a coping tool for my ADHD/ASD. Don’t ask me why, but having something moderately interesting that doesn’t involve certain intonations just works. (I cannot for the life of me, watch things like Shameless, because of the way that they talk- so I might find something wildly entertaining and never once binge it for that reason alone.)
Anyway, as I bring up Blake’s Red Dragon here, I can’t help thinking about Richard Armitage’s Francis Dolarhyde, particularly …..The….Great….Red…..Draaaaaagon.
*cough* Structure, structure, I swear I am working with a structure…
The series references one painting and I think it’s an absolutely beautiful way to illustrate what we refer to as the Dragon’s Head and Dragon’s Tail or the nodal axis of the Moon.
Please do not eat the painting. There are actually three of these and this one is my favorite for a bunch of reasons better served explored over coffee, late night in a dive diner. You can see all three of them here at The National Gallery of Art
That will also help you better understand them and the artist himself in a historical context if you don’t already.
The book and movie which will give you my reasoning better than the series: Dolarhyde eats the painting in an attempt to assert dominance over The Red Dragon. Though some have speculated that this character was schizophrenic, The Red Dragon is probably a manifestation of Dissociative Personality Disorder. While we do see some schizoid features in this, given the backstory of childhood abuse: trauma is often an impetus of DiD and he definitely expresses a lot of post traumatic features otherwise.
Without going into that debate: point being, here you have a character doing what he believes will silence The Red Dragon to protect who he sees as The Woman Clothed in The Sun. He has, at this juncture, been in tremendous conflict between his feelings for her- and The Dragon’s desire to kill her, but more importantly: what not only The Red Dragon represents but what she represents. (Anima/Animus, if you want. I could go into the idealization of The Woman a bit or what it really means to reject either masculine or feminine within based on said idealization- but whew. Not sure I have time to unpack that one fully here.)
When we are considering the Sun, Moon, and other planets in order to work with a chart, often, we concern ourselves with specific life events that they tie into. We may look at aspects between all of these things- but, often, we’ll talk about other things as having a much more “subtle” influence. It seems, however, that use of the word “subtle” has become a way to downplay the immense psychological and practical influence these things may have.
What is the Metonic Cycle?
Yesterday I mentioned the 19 or so year time frame in between these returns. When we speak on the Metonic cycle what we are talking about is when a New Moon hits the same exact degree it was, before. Technically speaking, you’re actually looking at an 18.6 year cycle.
The thing is, even as this almost 19 years marches on, we have an important interaction with eclipse cycles. All of them within that time frame and beyond, depending on how you want to track it.
This is almost always retrograde motion- which is important to bear in mind because you are in fact, dealing with something which is so intrinsically tied to the past. These two horse-shoe shaped points in your chart illustrate quite a lot. It has a very interesting parallel to Jung’s Individuation Process. Things we just are tangled into our experiences, our decisions and so forth, coming together to create who we are.
The Devil You Know
I am forever telling clients that it is rarely our haters that wind up destroying us. We like to fixate on them because they’re kinda a reflection and amplification of the shittier parts of life: but honestly, the idea of giving anybody else that kind of power over me makes me want to blow chunks.
No, there’s an order to who destroys us: ourselves, right at the helm and those we love the most coming in a close second. What we enable, what we accept, what we reject and so on- all those things are ours. Bang on in the brain pan-heart meat wheelhouse.
And no, I am not saying this shit is easy. In fact, it is usually the hardest thing in the world. It takes a tremendous amount of strength to let go of somebody you love because you love them rather than cling in fear or hope. I know of nothing more powerful than either of those two things.
Before I continue, you should understand that not one bit of what I am saying here means that you should stand for or allow free range shitty people to be shitty to you or others. In fact: it means just the opposite.
No one is under any obligation to “tolerate” shit- especially if they’re “preaching tolerance”. Before you get your knickers twisted: I do not preach tolerance. In fact, I have absolutely no problem judging and I do not feel any guilt for it. The natural consequence of you being an inexcusable asshole- is people treat you like an inexcusable asshole. For those who do preach tolerance and do speak out against judgement calls- or more specifically those who think that means they can’t call you on your bullshit: if you have two brain cells in there, you’d realize, there is no hypocrisy in them refusing your blatant assholery, either. You good with a boot on your neck? I thought not.
Let’s Do More Revelations Inspired Art…
“The wrath of the Lamb!” the martyrs cry
“break the seven seals, let the horsemen ride!”
The soldiers bear the royal crest and scream into the sky
“He will come He will come! the Dragon’s on the rise!”
From Broken Bride, Ludo
For those of us who have been through abuse, for those of us who have been through post traumatic stress- I don’t think I even need to talk about astrology, nodes, or otherwise. If you’re a bold-ass dork as I am: Ya’ll, your Shadow Link is a bastard to fight and it’s a bastard to fight because it is you.
Not your haters, not your friends, not your loved ones, not even the people who hurt you: it’s you. Even if you haven’t been through something- it isn’t a far flung concept, having to fight yourself, for yourself.
So, let’s get into those two returns I am looking at. Remember, I am writing this in a general sense because this shit is personal. These are not my stories to tell. These are also going to be quite long- as I said, I am trying to make them useful on a general scope for these two particular groups: it ain’t just my eldest and my partner going through this: but I would prefer it not to be the same fluffy buffet generalizations I see elsewhere.
The First Nodal Return: My Eldest: Fuck Your Moronic Stereotypes of Millennials
Think about the nearly 19 years leading up to this point. What was it all about? A foundation was formed, but much of it built on the illusions of childhood. The dreams are not hopeless, but childhood sees everything so much bigger and more golden than it may be. As we move closer to adulthood, the fallacy falls away- the humanity of our parents and that foundation is exposed both in positive and disheartening ways. When was the first time you questioned the wisdom of your parents? When did your father stop seeming to loom like a tower above you?
This is supposed to happen. It isn’t “supposed” to happen in painful ways, but think too long on what’s “supposed to” versus what is- you’ll lose your fucking mind. Many of us had the mantra “Life is unfair” drummed into our heads during this time- but how many of us reacted with a gut level: SO MAKE IT FAIR!?
You cannot expect those with a vested interest in things being unfair to make it fair- they will not. The system was never broken, it was built like this.
And they also have quite a vested interest in undermining your voice, silencing you and downplaying your contributions.
If we see that those who come before us are not as infallible as we believe as children, is it also revealed that we may be flawed, as well? It ought to be. Instead, many of us project or we ascribe our own failings to that of those before us- and in many cases: this is a pretty fair assessment.
That said: do we continue to embrace the mistakes which we have seen to create the flaws, do we reject them outright but only in resenting them- which ultimately means we one day find ourselves staring in horror at our parents’ reflection in the mirror? Do we just repeat those mistakes, unaware of the dysfunction we continue? (Oh jesus, a whole mess of you do.)
Have our parents prepared us to make our own decisions? Have them built the foundation for …not perfection.. But rather, the ability to make mistakes and recover?
Whether our upbringing and foundation has been ideal or not- it doesn’t fucking matter, we now have to make choices. (It does matter, it matters SO deeply, what I am illustrating here is that here is a point of personal power you need to recognize.)
Want to take a wild guess at what was going on when my eldest was born?
Yep. My first nodal return.
I knew that my childhood had not prepared me for adulthood on an intellectual level but there are very few things in the world which will alert you to the fact that you have not one iota of a clue what you’re doing like looking down into the big, beautiful eyes of a human being you are now responsible for.
Honestly….doesn’t much matter what kind of childhood you had: this is typically one of the most gut level terrifying moments of your entire life. Nothing, however, quite echos the pain of an uncertain childhood- like an incredibly uncertain future. And it doesn’t matter if you’re standing on the thresh-hold of parenthood or you never want to be and don’t, it doesn’t matter what happens to be going on: you’re making the first major decisions of your adult life. That’s a lot.
I had to make some hard choices I never wanted to make, which have persistently been judged by people who ironically cannot stop braying: HOW DOES THIS HAPPEN?! About gore-porn news stories involving parenting of some form or fashion going horrifyingly bad. At the time I made the choice to allow my eldest to be raised by his father and family: my depression was at a point that I couldn’t tell you if I would be alive one day to the next. I had a pretty good guess: I’d survived a phenobarbital overdose only due to his grandmother “Just having a feeling” while he was across the state visiting other family.
I would love to tell you that my choice had nothing to do with him but it had everything to do with him. A lot of people have asked me some truly ignorant shit about “Didn’t his birth change how you felt about life?” and, the thing is, it did. But, my child, my children- are not antidepressants nor should anyone ever place that sort of pressure on a child- or anyone else. My depression was never, ever my child’s responsibility, but his well-being was and still is.
And, I relay this because that was an incredibly big crossroads I would to this day revisit- a turning point in my life where I had to take off the blinders of …well, pretty much everything and make the first adult decision of my young life though I was not in any way prepared to do it. Oh, I tried convincing myself that thing everyone said was true: that his birth made me want to live. And in a way, it was a part of that. The problem was, I didn’t know how. In addition to nearly constantly wanting to die- I had a serious alcohol problem.
Like I said yesterday: common theme with a Pisces South node is escapism and when balanced with a Virgo North Node: Order from Chaos, Controlled Surrender, Resolve-Not-Avoid. Does this mean I can just shrug off responsibility for my choices as “born under a bad sign”? Like fuck it does. In fact- I have a remarkably powerful tool in my hot little hands for taking responsibility and if I fail to do so: I am a huge, giant fucking asshole who will, according to some beliefs: repeat this shit again. In my own experience, my refusal to fully deal?
Yeah, you bet. It came up again the past couple of years and I was like: Look, I am so fucking tired of this shit. I didn’t need astrology to be tired of it. I didn’t need astrology to show me my own dysfunction, my own maladaptations, my own trauma. You don’t either. For me, it was helpful in contextualizing it all and this is why I continue though most new age people make me want to poke a spork in my eye.
So, what, then, is it that the Leo North Node-Aquarius South Node First Return About?
Save our city!
Keep our souls, Lord!
Rise now and fight!
I see the shit these kids are confronted by and confronted- and crawl back into a marathon of 80s commercials on YouTube. Whenever someone’s bitching about their “bitching”- I’m like, “Who the fuck asked them to deal with this shit? WHO MADE THIS SHIT?” I’m a Gen. Xer- but honestly, I only mention this for context because frankly I think it’s all pretty stupid, which I suppose, give me my flannel- fits my stereotype, doesn’t it?
The entire point of the nodal return is how you find yourself- what you are, what you’ve been, where you’ve come from, the choices you make that will hopefully: lead to you feeling fulfilled. To recognize your own purpose on this floppy rock in space. In a first return: you’re figuring out not only how to open up your heart to your own needs, wants, and otherwise- but, discerning what you’re passionate about and how you’ll go about engaging in it.
All of your life- Leo NNers- you’re going to find that things seem to push the shit out of you. The buttons get stomped on. Sadly, you will need to find a way of not being apathetic to the drama but rather: embracing it. It’s gonna happen, but, it is the loudest which truly control the narrative. It is those who wish to control the narrative who tell you that you are whining or dismiss your truths. We often speak about drama in the context of painful situations- but the truth is: drama also means expression and passion.
Whether you’re going through your 1st, 2nd, or 3rd Nodal Return…
You need this drama- but you need even more to recognize which part of the script you’re meant to play. You need your buttons pushed and you need to stop avoiding it. Though you would prefer things to be confrontation free: there are a lot of things which need expression. Someone with your keen eye for the wrong, the right, and someone with your South Node ability to intellectualize it: it’s necessary. A vital contribution not just to your own development but to society.
Do not make the mistake of making it all mind and no heart, though. You’re not protecting yourself- you’re hurting yourself.
The pressure in this is that though you’d like to slink back and avoid these confrontations: you’re the one who needs to do it. You’re the voice that’s needed, you’re the magic people need, you are not, nor were you ever meant to be: a supporting role. Nah, you’re the lead, so take the lead. You are no one’s understudy- in fact, though you cannot simply re-write what has come before, you have a whole lot of blank pages to fill and they need filling. Please roll your eyes at my incessant use of cliches, please challenge them. If it’s wrong: challenge it all.
This will hold particularly true of your own life: especially at your first nodal return. Nobody else can make these choices for you. They have likely tried and it instinctively pissed you off- which, sure, some will write off as simply teenage rebellion but I am inclined to believe there’s something deep within the belly that pushes you to recognize: your own agency, your own will, is where it’s at.
The problem then, isn’t that bright outspoken independence. The problem is this tendency that stems from that South Node Aquarius: All of this is weird. I cannot relate to anything, so I don’t want to give a fuck about it. Everyone is stupid, don’t they see? Don’t they see everything is fucked up beyond belief? Why are they always talking about this inconsequential shit? I want nothing to do with the assholes, I want nothing to do with anything except my little circle of things. The things which make sense. Except…even there…there’s an odd detachment. A hole.
Leo is What Teaches Aquarius To Vibrate at a Higher Frequency…
There is a tendency to focus on the shittier parts of the South Node as those aspects which need release- and to some extent this is true. But it isn’t. Going back to my example of Dolarhyde there- this is an extreme example of what disassociation does: but to a certain degree, we all do this. There are aspects of ourselves we would all prefer weren’t: yet, they are.
Until you accept them, you will never control them. Dolarhyde and examples like that are good not because they somehow glamorize, not because they mock: but they illustrate how disassociating works. (And for the love of all that’s fucking holy: if you don’t understand how fictional Dolarhyde is, if you don’t understand that it is remarkably statistically rare that outward violence happens with the mentally ill- just sit on your damn hands, I don’t wanna hear it.)
The Leo bits of you which want to roar- they’re what help to lift that lower Aquarius higher. Change fucking happens, and as it does, so too do you develop according to your adaptations or your maladaptation. Event. Response. Reaction. Repeat. Repeat. Pattern. As this happens, you are in effect- programming yourself. Your subconscious programs itself- and that’s not woo at all: it’s been well established that the mind adapts along pathways I am not even remotely qualified yet to speak on but: as Brene Brown titled a book I adore: The Body Keeps the Score.
It is all connected.
Continuing to repeat mistakes is easier than facing what needs to be changed and taking steps, evolving and changing. It really is. It sucks, still, but it’s easier. If you think repeating mistakes is difficult, you’d be right: so I am not dismissing how difficult change can be. Because it certainly can be. Thing is, for Leo North Node: that passionate part of you that you try to shove down- that others may try to shove down- is important. It’s important because it will express the things you deserve to have heard. It expresses the things the world around you NEEDS to hear.
As it does so, it also opens you up and makes you incredibly vulnerable and that is not a comfortable place. The first nodal return, then, is where you come to that first point of true recognition- where you may in fact be confronted with all the ways your life thus far has either prepared you or did not: to be open, to be engaged, to be passionate, and to be unapologetically who you are: to be free.
It is also a time to recognize that even if you think you are some sort of freak weirdo nobody understands and so, you’re not going to seek acceptance because you feel no one will: you are probably wrong.
In fact, it may well be the time when you consider a quote by Hannah Gadsby, which I first heard in this promo for Nanette:
I want my story heard, because, what I would have done to have heard a story like mine.
You are not speaking out for the idiots, Leo North Node going through your first return: you’re speaking to others just like you, who feel adrift and alone, and need to know they’re not. You are important. Your story is important and no matter who wants to say it isn’t, no matter who tells you you are “whining”, no matter who judges or treats you shitty for telling it-
You deserve to be heard, and the lives you touch in such brave vulnerability are who matter.
(PSA: So we are clear, you don’t have to be a Leo North Node for the above to apply, at all. Our stories are not for those who have a vested interest in silencing them and they never, ever were. It is no big shock that abusive shitheads have a totally narcissistic approach to such things, though, is it, now? Do stay tuned, tomorrow, we will take a look at the fact that…life is just full of do-overs, because that is how cycles work. If you’re looking for how to deal with your 2nd Nodal Return- but you read this, recognizing “Oh shit.” there is no “Oh shit.” because, well, you’re in the middle of your do over. Congrats.)