Fucking Pluto. And fucking Saturn, too.
Pluto is an intense planet and often has a bad wrap as a malefic planet. Why? Because he is about obsession and compulsion, hidden depths and secrets, fears and desires, destruction, sex, death, power dynamics, and straight up power. He’s not all bad. This planet is about all that lies beneath the surface and using it to transform and regenerate, it is about facing your deepest fears and hidden longings. Birth and death are difficult, scary, and necessary processes. They are powerful processes and, like all power, it comes at a cost. Wherever Pluto is in a chart, this is where the intense powers of creation and destruction lie for you and where, through struggle, you can be empowered.
Saturn, too, is an intense and classically malefic planet. Saturn is about limitation, restriction, harsh realities, responsibilities… he represents the stern parent (usually the father), but also government and law. He is cold and logical, interested in the long term and the traditional, building solid foundations over time and in the right way. With Saturn, there is definitely a right way and a wrong way. He governs achievement, maturity, wisdom, and how you are perceived in the public eye, particularly your career. He is the planet of taking responsibility for yourself and others. He is the planet of hard work and karma. He is the planet of harsh lessons and delayed gratification and all the benefits or lack thereof, if you don’t do the work.
These are powerful, but not fun planets. Both are slow moving planets, so their processes take time, although Pluto also governs sudden and catastrophic changes that force you to rebuild or perish.
And then they are both in my 4th House, the bottom and root of the chart, the midnight of the soul, the place where you come from and will inevitably go to whether through joyful reunion, peaceful repose, or fall from grace. It is home, both physical and metaphorical and the deepest personal unconscious and instinctual reactions. It is cyclical like the Moon which rules it. It is opposite the House of Career, so when something upsets one, it often upsets the other.
My 4th House is ruled by Libra, seeking partnerships, but both planets are in Scorpio and my Pluto is at 0° 1′24,″ which means it is very intensely Scorpio. Pluto also rules Scorpio. Almost all of my planets on the right side of my chart trace back to Pluto as does my South Node, which covers past lives, mastery, stagnation, and comfort zones. It makes close sextiles to my Jupiter and my Neptune and looser ones with my Sun and Mercury (meaning there are opportunities for major transformations in those areas of my life, if I work at it). It is literally at the very bottom of my chart near the middle of that House.
So, what does that all mean?
My role in the home has always been as the harmonizer and/or authority figure, which caused major issues for me when my parents divorced and again when my father remarried. I was probably maddeningly difficult to parent with authority, even though I generally followed the rules as long as they made sense. The few times that disciplining me was required, I argued. A lot. My primary home was strict and filled with tension between what I was told I should believe (so much church – 3 days a week and occasional weekends) and what I actually believed. There were points were I was isolated from friends or events, because they believed I was gay. And, even though my relationships with my parents have 100% improved since I have left home, there is still anger and resentment there.
Those major control issues that I mentioned back in my first couple posts all root back to this planet hanging out in the depths of my soul and it affects almost everything, especially my ability to connect with other people and form partnerships. It means I’m at my most comfortable when I’m in control of my environment, yet acutely aware that control of my environment is an illusion. When faced with uncomfortable issues, I will dig into them, but through intense and often dark introspection, which I will nearly always keep to myself, so that I can go on caring for others from a place of projected strength and apparent harmony, while also secretly being frustrated that there isn’t anyone I feel comfortable leaning on and allowing to care for me or to truly partner with. Which is because I don’t let anyone all the way in. And that is deep down enough that it took me a long time to recognize it.
And with all that going on, it’s not surprising that one of the places I feel the least comfortable is at home. Home is a place of responsibility, secrets, and power struggles. When I’m falling apart, I hide at work or at school because hard work sustains my home and learning sustains my mind; I have always been able to put aside whatever I am feeling, to “leave it at the door” so to speak, and get to work or dig into learning. There is comfort in the clinically clean lines of problem solving at work or in theories. Feeling could always wait until later.
Until last Spring when I was suddenly let go from a well paying job while I was in the middle of therapy. Feeling was the work I was supposed to be doing and it took time away from my job and then, as much a surprise to the company as it was to me, a contract we had been counting on wasn’t awarded and the work, already difficult for the region I was given (honestly, still not sure if that was a vote of confidence or sabotage by my team lead), dried up completely. After being told repeatedly that not getting the contract wasn’t going to affect anything, most of our group was let go without warning.
It was a rough couple of months. There was nothing to do, but put in applications and feel. I started on anti-depressants. I considered hospitalization. I had a few instances where it was physically difficult not to start cutting, something I had never thought of doing before. I started meditating and going to yoga when I could. I wrote some angsty shit. A huge secret that wasn’t mine to tell was outed and I took the brunt of fall out.
And that was the turn around point.
Being called some harsh and horrible things and given some unreasonable demands by someone whose anger I understood (misdirected as it was) but which definitely fell in the category of complete hypocrisy gave me the push back my Pluto needed to, with difficulty, remain kind but firm in my stance, and which also allowed me the chance to break out of the shit I had been blaming myself for in regards to the sexual assaults I had experienced in the past. Weird, right? Total upheaval, breakthrough, peace. But at no point did that transformation not suck and it didn’t mean the work was over.
So, fast forward to last week. I’ve been looking for a house and I found one I really like. I’ve been waivering on it because it is a big step and I would be looking at overlapping payments between a mortgage and rent for a little while, but, after some calculating and a little bit of faith, I decided that, between my two jobs, I could handle that with some strict budgeting. I signed the contract on Saturday, October 14th.
I lost my full time job on Tuesday, October 17th.
The catalyst was my fault – I pissed off the boss by venting about an issue that came up where she was actually in the wrong, but I definitely could have handled my frustration better and less publicly. In fact, I usually do, but frustrations had been piling up, it wasn’t the first time the same kind of issues had come up, and I needed to vent, so I could put it out of my head and continue working. So, I vented on Facebook. I didn’t use names, but with questions asked, if you worked there, you could probably figure it out. I assume either someone on my friend list is friends with them, too, or it’s possible they heard me talking to my supervisor about the issue in the office and saw it later. That being said, they didn’t fire me for that. Instead, they went looking through my Facebook and through my work for the 6 weeks until they could find something that could be bent to constitute a fire-able offense. I have several friends who know the industry I was working in who state that it was not a fire-able offense and I should talk to a lawyer. I’m looking into it.
Funnily enough, I do have Pluto transiting (meaning this is where Pluto currently is in the sky compared to my birth chart) my 6th House of daily habits and work. Here’s what the horoscope break down had to say:
PLUTO CAPRICORN IN THE SIXTH HOUSE:
(House of Virgo and Mercury or Chiron) An overhaul of work life. Getting to fundamental health issues. Taking responsibility for the whole self — mind, body, spirit. Exploring healing modalities that go deeper.
Turning away from toxins toward what’s natural. Finding power to be a clean machine, in a polluted world. Dedication and service, volunteering or becoming a healer.
Yeah… either way, upheaval, and it destroyed me for about 3 hours.
But then, I dried my tears, I talked to my part-time boss, the realtor, and the temp agency I used to work at, and I applied for two jobs. I got to have last week off, which was weird, but needed, and I’ll make more money from it due to vacation and sick pay having to be paid out. I have nearly full-time hours at my other job for this week and an interview for a better paying job today.
I can’t get out of the sales contract for the house unless the appraisal or the home inspection reveals something huge (I’ll have to pay for both of those) or I don’t get the loan, which is a possibility now.
But, you know what? I will be ok.
I’ll either get the house or I won’t. If I do, then this is the universe’s way of saying I was going to need more than I had to make it work and it’s time to take the scary steps to keep what I want. If I don’t, I already have a back up plan for May and I don’t have to pay for two different places to live. Saturn usually doesn’t grant things until about the age of 35, so perhaps I’m just two years too early – I’m kind of impatient like that. Or maybe home owning is not for me and I’ll be presented with an opportunity that would have required moving anyway. We’ll see.
Truthfully, I wasn’t happy doing the work I was doing, even though I had awesome co-workers. I had even planned on asking my supervisor last Tuesday to go over some of the rules and practices I was having trouble with, because I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to continue there unless I understood why those rules were in place. And, honestly, it’s their loss. I worked hard, I was diligent and observant in my work, and I caught some fairly important mistakes before they became larger issues. I had my criticisms, but I am loyal. I accidentally and unwisely wounded the boss’s pride and they have the right to feel how they feel about it. Whether I press litigation or not, if they continue in their current behavior and reactions, they’ll eventually capsize their own company. And, honestly, I usually know better than to vent publicly. It serves as a solid reminder that, if I feel the need to take on authority, either be bullet proof or do it covertly. If I feel like I can’t do that, it’s time apply elsewhere, even if it feels disloyal.
Even more than those realizations, though, is this: I would have stayed there until I burned out. However much I may hate a job, if it meets my needs and I can adjust my home life to fit around it, I’ll keep at it. Like a dirty, cheap security blanket, I’ll cling to it and I won’t look elsewhere until I have to. So, now I have to. Thanks, Pluto.
Earlier this year, I decided not to go to grad school just yet. Things just didn’t line up. I said I was going to give myself a year to find a job I wanted in higher ed, so that I would have the opportunity to do the program online while getting paid a living salary. I logicked myself out of it, saying I had too many responsibilities right now.
And maybe that’s still true. But, I have the Wisconsin GI Bill and the university has an awesome book rental program, so it would mostly be registration fees and since the Wisconsin GI Bill works off credit hours as tuition forgiveness, I don’t need to be a full time student to take advantage of it. It’s a marvelous benefit that fear is holding me back from. I can take a class as a non-degree seeking student in foreign language or sociology or women’s and gender studies – anything that brings me joy and makes me a more well-rounded human being – anything that helps me decide if I want to work in International Education or Diversity Studies or advocacy in the field of law – anything that makes me more attractive addition to a university or legal setting. And I’m going to apply to the jobs I want even if I don’t feel qualified. I’m going to apply to jobs I want in places I’m not 100% sure about. And, maybe most importantly, I’m going to apply for jobs I actually want, not ones that are kinda, sorta, maybe related that I can maybe make work. It’s time to live without the safety net.
Alright, Pluto? Saturn? Fuck it, let’s do this!