3 Tips for A Painless Break Up: Saturn in Libra

21 07 2010

© July 2010 by Fabienne Lopez

Let’s face it, with Saturn entering Libra on July 21st, 2010, for a two year stay (until October 2012), relationships will be in the hot seat. Many relationships will end as Saturn demands a pruning of all relationships that have become stale.

Back in March of this year, I gave out some tips on how to develop healthy relationships as a way to harness the lessons and energy that Saturn requires us to develop in our relationships. Part of the development also includes how to end a relationship in a way that is healthy and positive.

With Saturn in Libra, ending a long-term relationship can be a depressing, painful, awful, and really hard on your self-esteem. Many times, the break up requires a lot of hard work. So how to break up as positively as possible? Time to use the Libra way of balancing things.

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Soccer and The 12 Signs of Astrology

1 07 2010

©July 2010 by Fabienne Lopez

2010 World Cup I am glued to the TV watching every game of the Brazilian soccer team in the World Cup. As I surfed the Internet during half time, I found, on Saturnalia, this article

in Portuguese on soccer and the 12 signs of the Brazilian team, written by El Gatón.

I translated the original post from Portuguese and adapted it for my English-speaking readers.

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Water and Fire by Darby Costello – A Book Review (Sort of)

18 05 2010

© May  2010 by Fabienne Lopez

When I first started studying Astrology one of the first things I encountered was the 4 elemental signs: Fire, Water, Earth and Air.

Here’s a brief explanation of how the elements relate to different functions in our personalities and temperaments: Fire is linked to action; Earth to common sense; Air to the thinking function and Water to feelings. That was all I was exposed to. Maybe every now and then some article would list a few keywords but had no in depth explanations.

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I Hate You / I Love You: My Struggle with Venus

13 05 2010

©May 2010 by Fabienne Lopez

I was struggling with my article about my inner/outer dialogue with  Venus.  Venus has always been my unlived planet and my writing is very rooted in my personal experience. Hard for me to write about Venus since I do not have a lot of experience with this planet.

Venus is ruled by Libra. But my Venus is in detriment – located in Libra’s opposite sign — in Aries. My Venus is also retrograde – meaning it seems from a geocentric point of view to go backwards in my birth chart. See Wikipedia: retrograde motion. Not a happy placement for Venus, where her qualities, as described in astrology manuals, are in conflict with the qualities  ascribed to Aries. Making difficult  for me to express both energies in a harmonious way. In astrology when a planet is retrograde, the energy of the planet is experienced in a more subjective, internal way. Thus your experience and expression of the planet’s energy is very unique to you. With Venus retrograde in my natal chart, my concept of beauty is different, comes from a different place, than those around me. Read the rest of this entry »

Saturn in Libra: 3 Tips for Healthy Relationships

19 03 2010

March 2010 © by Fabienne Lopez

In one of Gary Larsen’s most memorable “Far Side” cartoons, a man scolds his dog: “Okay Ginger, I’ve had it! Stay out of the garbage! Understand, Ginger? Stay out of the garbage!” In the next frame the dog’s understanding reads, “Blah blah blah Ginger, blah blah blah blah blah blah! Ginger blah blah!”

In relationships, I am Ginger.

I feel like my relationships have been trying to tell me something and I only hear blah, blah, blah, blah.

I suck at relationships!

Over the years, I’ve asked myself:

Why do I find myself over and over in the same situation?

Why do I always attract losers … Fill the blanks …?

I never realized when I met him, he was crazy… Fill the blanks …?

He does not understand me!

He is the one! I’ll finally be happy now!

Sounds familiar?

With Saturn in Libra until October 2012, we all have plenty of opportunities this year to visit, revisit, scrutinize, understand, dissect and do a general spring-cleaning of our relationships.

Thank god! Oh no!

While I can’t say I greet this spring-cleaning opportunity with joy in my heart – more like trepidation — I am using this transit to gain clarity, create change, and bring a little peace to my heart. Before I go more into my story, and perhaps yours too, let’s dive into a bit more about this transit.

In astrology, Saturn exerts the most influence and power in Libra. In Liz Greene book, Saturn A New look at an Old Devil, Saturn is regarded as the planet of pain, delays, disappointment, depression, fears, restriction and discipline.

(Do you hear the scolding and finger wagging in your face? I do!) 

Saturn makes us work for our wisdom: Through hard work, frustration (you work to improve your relationships with no immediate results), delays (you see the reward on the horizon but it is slightly out of reach), set-backs (you got the reward and you go right back to the unhealthy pattern and self-denial (you have to do the work before you get the rewards). In the end, our reward is wisdom, self-discipline, and a clearer understanding of what it is that we seek in a relationship.

The last time Saturn was in Libra in the 1980s, I didn’t even hear the scolding. I had my nose in the garbage. I wanted a relationship because everyone else around me had one. Why not me? I was in college, and having a boyfriend was supposedly part of the campus experience. I picked a foreign exchange student, one that was guaranteed to be inaccessible. Mostly for two reasons: one, he was not interested in me, and secondly, at the end of the year, he would go back to his country and break up with me. I would then be able to spin the wheels of the patterns I wrote about at the start of this article.

And that’s what happened and kept happening over and over during the next decades (I am a slow learner). Within minutes of meeting a man, I was convinced I had met my true love. At the second date, I was already planning the wedding, especially if, after reading Linda Goodman’s Love Signs, I discovered we were compatible. By the third date, I had our entire life mapped out with the 2.5 kids, the cat and white picket fence.

Now 30 years later, after having gone through this scenario multiple times, I get a chance to listen to the man in the cartoon, understand him, and have a more serious look at the health of my relationships. The blah, blah, blah is turning into words I can actually understand.

What have I learned from my first Saturn in Libra transit when I was 18 to this one? I will tell you.

In a relationship it’s never about the other person. It’s actually about you, more precisely, it’s about your share of personal responsibility in the relationship and how strong  your boundaries (a very saturnine word) are.

One of the reasons I kept repeating those unhealthy patterns in my relationships was because I lacked boundaries. You know, that line that divides my business from his business, my emotions and needs from his. I confused my reality with his and his with mine, what he was responsible for (everything), what I was responsible for (pointing out what was wrong.)

Specifically, I was more interested in venting what I did not like about him, what he did to me, what he was supposed to do than in learning what I valued, what I cherished, what I admired and what I wanted. My goal was more in pleasing my partner than asserting myself and meeting my needs and goals. I was always crossing the boundary lines by putting aside my own interests and hobbies in order to do what my partner wanted.  I valued his  opinions and feelings more than my own. I needed to be “needed” in order to have a relationship.

This caring and giving left me depleted, angry, resentful, and generally unhappy with my relationships. I blamed my partner for my unhappiness, feelings of isolation, rejection, and disappointment. After all, I was behaving the way I thought society and my own family upbringing expected of me. I was doing nothing wrong, I thought.

That’s not how I see it now.

I am becoming more and more aware of the inner tension, huge differences existing between my inner needs and the learned ideal of what a mate should be. This is the first lesson. There are other lessons that Saturn in Libra is teaching me.

It’s not my job to take care of my partner. I sincerely believed it was. That’s how I was raised. The unwritten contract was that “I take care of you and you return the favor by taking care of me.”

Guess what? It doesn’t happen that way. And if it does, you end up in an unhealthy relationship. Saturn is showing me the flaws in that type of arrangement – the ways I manipulated others with guilt so that they would take care of me. Believe me, it is a very hard conditioning to break “because good people are selfless and I want to be a good person,” I tell myself.

I’m using a lot of my energy right now being conscious of this pattern and choosing to modify this habit. But I am learning. CoDA (Co-Dependents Anonymous) meetings  has been a useful tool in moments of crisis.

I have the right to say, “NO!”

In a simple, direct straightforward manner. I no longer need to resort to:

“No, but,” — “I don’t want to do this but I will do it anyway to please you…Fill the blanks.”

“Maybe,” — “What I am really saying is no, but I am not saying directly in order to avoid offending, hurting, disappointing you…Fill the blanks

“Yes,” – “Agreeing to something  but I will make you pay later on because I am resentful that I agreed to something I do not want to do.

What a concept! The word no was not in my vocabulary. The first time I said no to a request from a person I loved I got so anxious and guilty. I was waiting for the sky to fall. Yes, we did argue but nothing bad happened. Amazing lesson for me.

I need to take care of myself. I did not know about self-care. I knew about survival strategies, controlling explosive situations and taking care of others. Nothing about creating the life I wanted. My motto now is “Do not make others a priority if you are an option for them”.

What lessons can you learn with Saturn in Libra? Let’s take this time until October 2012 to develop the functional and healthy relationships we really want.

Note: This article is featured in Saturn in Libra and Relationships, published on Sasstrology as part of the 2010 International Astrology Day Blogathon. The purpose of this web-based event is to create a permanent library of articles about how to deal with the stresses of the Cardinal T-Square of Pluto, Saturn and Uranus. The main page for the Blogathon collections is at The Cardinal T-Square of 2010: Saturn, Uranus, Pluto.

Photos: Credits to Flickr Creative Commons

2010 Astrological Forecast

20 12 2009

©December 2009 by Fabienne Lopez

It’s the end of the year. Time for astrological yearly predictions! I must confess I am a junkie. I love and relish astrological yearly predictions. Come November, I start scanning the internet to find sites that will tell me all about what’s going to happen to Aries (my sun sign) in the coming year. My favorite site to get my forecast fix is The Horoscope Junkie. There I get to choose among dozens of sites. I am in paradise for a couple of hours.

I only wrote a yearly column once. But then, I was a young and inexperienced astrologer who did not know better. It was a lot of work to condense and abstract all the major transits for the year and to repeat the feat 12 times! Never again.

Anyway, I thought I would do a spin off and try some astrological humor.

Aries: Get ready for a big adventure! This year will be all about you! Go get your rifle, sword or whatever sharp shiny metal object you are happy with. With Jupiter and Uranus in your sign, this could be THE year for going on a hero’s journey (as opposed to all those past years) and slay that dragon!

Taurus: In 2010, you will benefit through friends both financially and emotionally. That means more money to buy those soft, plushy, luxurious things you love so much. And more money to spend on gardening tools and seeds.

Gemini: This will be the year where the newest communication device will be launched. You will be able to go, “Bladdity-blah-blah,”  to your heart’s content!  Better than Twitter, Facebook, Iphone, text messaging and email.

Cancer: The coming year will see the rebound of the real estate market and you will be able to afford the kitchen of your dreams, exactly like the one Mom used to cook in.

Leo: Rest assured, this Not the year were you will fall off your throne and lose your crown.

Virgo: The current stats indicate there is a fifty-fifty chance of the predictions for your sign will come true or vice-versa.

Libra: Time to get serious with that relationship. With Saturn in your sign for the next couple of years, no more weighting the pros and cons. You will have to choose between all the suitable candidates you met at the “How to Find True Love” seminar. I know they are all excellent husband material. But you know you have to make a decision.

Scorpio: Smoky eyes, 2010 will be the year were you will overcome your fear of losing control. Yeah! NO more voodoo dolls!

Sagittarius: Great opportunities will arise as soon as you realize that your happiness no longer depends so much on possessions, but rather on the deeper meaning associated with things symbolic of love and sharing. Just wait and see!

Capricorn: Yes, I know, my dear Cap! In 2009 you did not get the bonus you worked so hard for. What can I say, Wall Street, Main Street, it’s a dead end street war. Fear not! With Puto in your sign, your expense account should rebound this year and you will be able to enjoy your corporate perks again. Security is the key word for 2010.

Aquarius: Your research on the validity of astrology will finally pay off and you will be able to reform the current economic structures and improve social conventions.

Pisces: With Jupiter in your sign for part of the year, your connection with the Divine will be magnified a thousand fold. You will be able to chase more dreams, expand your compassion and complete any 12 steps program of your choice!

Disclaimer: The 2010 forecast in this post is a caricature. It is meant to provide some smiles during this time of the year which can be stressful. It is a gentle poke to all 12 signs not to take themselves so seriously. 😀

Your Holiday Alcohoroscope

12 12 2009

December 2009 by Fabienne Lopez

As the Holiday season is approaching its peak, so it the frenzy of holiday parties. If you are tired of the same old wine, beer or mixed drink staples for your gathering, pour out those stale beverage choices and grab hold of the most fitting refresher for your astrological sign.

Art Credit: Alice-Marie PhotographyArt Credit: Alice-Marie Photography

Aries:  Male or female tend to like manly drinks like whisky, bourbon, gin or scotch on the rocks. Aries woman also have a preference for Cosmopolitan. Remember they can outdo anybody as far as shots are concerned. To recover after a night’s party, plenty of Gatorade.
Taurus: Taurus prefers to drink at a leisurely pace, aiming for a mellow glow rather than a full-on zonk. A vintage pink wine or classic brand beers like Sam Adams, Budweiser, Heineken or Beck’s will suit their mood.
Gemini: Mixed drinks in order to avoid boring repetition. Wine tastings and drink sampling will also keep Gemini’s talking and entertained.
Cancer: House parties are Cancer’s favorite as well as any cocktail that shows the best local produce of a region. Think sangria, mojito or margarita will put a crab in heaven.

Leo: Crown Royal. Need I to say anything more?
Virgo: Specialty wines and micro-brewed beers may appeal to Virgo’s love of craft. Cocktails with green garnishes or themes such as mint juleps, Midori Sours and Grasshoppers may pique your Virgin’s curiosity and love of all things earthy. And for the health conscious Virgo, milk. It does the body good you know.
Libra: The elegance of champagne and champagne cocktails (think Mimosas) consumed in stylish glassware in a pleasant environment.
Scorpio: Sex on the beach, screwdriver, screaming orgasm
Sagittarius: Imported beers. The  travel-loving Archer might be intrigued by the flair of international drinks such as the popular Brazilian Caipirinha, Moscow mules, Singapore slings, perhaps even a Long Island iced tea.

Capricorn: Capricorn likes cocktails just like they are — classic and on the dry side. Gin and tonic, standard martinis (prepared with gin, please, not vodka, stirred not shaken) and drinks without frills or fruit garnishes make Cap’s happy. And do not listen to them if they tell you they only drink on social occasions.
Aquarius: Aquarius is likely to order stuff most people have never heard of a Satan’s whiskers, a negroni, an Arthur Tompkins. They like to stump the bartender. This sign rules the color electric blue and would be pleased by any tipple featuring blue curacao. Since their taste tends towards the quirky, they are still probably doing “Jello shots”.
Pisces: Whatever your drinking.  Pretty much anything will satisfy a Pisces in a pinch. Pisces picks up subtle flavors better than anyone, and will especially enjoy wine tasting or sampling cocktails. Favorite summer drinks of the Fish may include Fish House Punch (rum, Cognac, lemon juice, peach brandy).

Art credit: Photos from  Alice-Marie Photography – from Flickr Common Creatives