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Highlights for April 13-19, 2020: The Luxury of Optimism

The Luxury of Optimism

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I was born at the Moon’s Last Quarter. Those born at this phase, I find, are fond of solitude and set lofty goals for ourselves. But what, in the language of the Moon, does a Last Quarter Moon feel like?

Well, it’s a bit lonely, actually, and prone to melancholy. The default setting is dissatisfaction; why haven’t I done enough, how can I be better, is there enough time on the planet to accomplish what I feel I was sent here to do?

In short, it’s an innately Capricornian phase of the Moon. And once a year, when the transiting Last Quarter Moon actually falls in the sign of Capricorn, as it does this week (April 14, 3:01 pm PDT), maybe we’ll all feel some of that loneliness, a bit of disappointment. A month into this pandemic shutdown, you may feel that you’re running out of time to accomplish what you’d hoped to, losing ground that can’t be recovered. And if you’re not someone who’s lucky enough to live with someone you like, you may be craving companionship and loving touch – even if you’re normally perfectly happy with your own company.

This Last Quarter Moon point is close to the degree of the January Saturn/Pluto conjunction, and is conjoined now with Jupiter/Pluto. So, it feels hard. It feels like we’re losing so much. And many of us are. Like a lot of self-employed people in non-essential professions, I worry about the future of my own livelihood. But this Last Quarter Moon offers perspective, too. If we have a safe home, food in the kitchen, a kind partner, enough money to keep the lights on, and haven’t yet had a loved one end up in the hospital struggling for their next breathe, here’s a reminder of the great privileges we enjoy.

The Sabian symbol for the Last Quarter Moon’s degree, A water sprite, combined with the Sun’s degree, A man possessed of more gifts than he can hold, speak of what we do have, what’s left to us in a time when so much is disappearing. Nature. Magic. A slower pace of life. A different, and maybe more authentic set of criteria against which to measure success. Those of us with the luxury of optimism are invited, at this Last Quarter Moon, to reflect on all of these things, to let go of disappointment and instead, to give thanks.

After the Deluge

The Sun’s passage from sign to sign gives hints about where we’ll find vitality in the month ahead. In Taurus’ solar season, which begins as the Sun enters the sign (April 19, 7:45 am PDT), relaxation and good living become essential to energetic well-being. If you’ve spent the month of the Sun in Aries rushing from task to task, finding it difficult to settle in to quarantine, working from home, and a world turned on its ear, you might be ready for a rest about now. We can get away with being in non-stop emergency response mode for awhile, but eventually we’ll start to burn out. That’s when it’s time to give ourselves over to Taurus’ season and its slower pace – to eat well, get rest, and refocus on simple pleasures.

This Taurus season is complicated, however, by a couple of things. First, of course, is a world that currently denies us many of the physical pleasures Taurus most enjoys. Also, Venus—the ruling planet of Taurus—is moving very slowly, and has entered the shadow of its upcoming retrograde period (May 14 through June 26, 2020).  In its pure form, Venus has a very straightforward approach to money, relationships, and pleasure: acquire things (or spend time with people) that feel good, look good, taste good, sound good. During its long sojourn through Gemini, deprived of physical contact with most other people during the COVID-19 pandemic, we will rely on Gemini’s verbal realm for pleasure and connection. Zoom calls, emails, and text chains have reminded us how delightful it is to stay in touch, laughing and sharing virtual meals and happy hours. Many people tell me they’re actually visiting more with family and friends than they were before “social distancing!”

But there is poignancy in Venus’s slow movement. As it slows to a crawl, it can’t quite catch up its trine with Mars in Aquarius, a planetary connection that will often convert interest and attraction turn into actual relationships. Then again, that might not be an altogether bad thing; Venus will make three aspects to Neptune in the coming months, and that – as well as Venus retrograde – can lead us to discover that a relationship might not be all that it seems.

Writing and images © 2020 April Elliott Kent

Jen and I dig deep into all the week’s highlights
in our latest podcast episode, 021| Cardinal, Fixed, & Mutable: Signs a la Mod-alities

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21 comments to " Highlights for April 13-19, 2020: The Luxury of Optimism "

  • Isabella

    thank you as always, april. so sorry to hear about spike. even though you know you have to let them go, it doesn’t make it less painful.
    a big hug


  • Stella

    Sending much love to you on your loss of dear Spike.
    Animals give such unconditional love and antics don’t they!
    To lose a beloved pet is huge. The bond of love can never be broken, that I know. xx

  • Nancy

    When a dear cat moves on, the time we have spent together becomes a movie of memory, we grieve our loved one and the time together and realize where we’ve been and all that has past. Good memories and where did the time go memories and how did I get to where I am memories. A lot of rattling around in the brain, at least for me and maybe you too. Glad you all had a good 17 years together.

    Thank you for the beautiful posts and your unbelievably wonderful collages. It is always a pleasure to receive them. Onward we go, fondly, Nancy

    • April

      Thank you for that, Nancy. I appreciate your kindness and warm words, and I apologize for the lateness in responding. xoxo

  • Terri Ehlert

    So sorry to hear about Spike; sending heartfelt condolences for your loss. Take care of yourself. As always your newsletter is filled with insights and wisdom for the benefit of those who receive your gifts. Thank you! – Terri

    • April

      Thank you, Terri, for all those warm sentiments. They are much appreciated. Apologies for the delayed response. xoxo April

  • Jan

    Condolences on the passing of your very beloved kitty boy, Spike. All pet lovers know the pain and sorrow that comes with the loss of a dear furry friend. At some point you may want to contact an animal communicator who can pass on a message from Spike that would be very reassuring to you.

    • April

      Thank you so much, Jan. He was a dear companion. Much appreciate your kindness, and I apologize for taking so long to respond. xoxo

  • Gabrielle

    Oh oh oh, an empty house, I so know this feeling April, and sending you all my love with your darling Spike having passed. Gee, what a difficult time and you still keep creatively sending us such rich fruits. I can’t thank you enough, for sharing your wonderful talents, and yes your collages as well, they are magnificent. I’m finding lock down more difficult this week, even though I’m blessed with resources and wonderful company, my soul “wants out”. Thank you.

    • April

      Thank you so much, Gabrielle. The past couple of weeks have been very challenging for many of us, and it’s kind of you to take the time to offer your sympathy. Apologies for the delay in responding… xoxo April

  • Ann

    So sorry to hear of the loss of your dear cat, Spike. It sounds like he was well loved and I am certain he is missing you, too.

  • Lisa

    Thank you, April, for putting words to the ways in which I’ve felt most challenged, and for why I’ve been raising the harder questions about whether I am living a life with meaning. Nothing like a quarantine to show us which aspects of ourselves need tending.
    I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your beloved kitty.

    • April

      Thank you so much, Lisa. You’re right about what this quarantine is showing us about ourselves, as well as our relationships with others. I’m touched that so many here have taken the time to share my sorrow over a beloved pet, when I know everyone has their own struggles. Thank you, and I do apologize for taking so time to respond. xoxo

  • Clairessense

    Dearest April,
    I share thel grief of Spike’s transition and I want to honour You in your loyalty, commitment and love for the feline family you have been a part of for so long. Bless your beautiful heart.

    I am going thru my own loss, in that my daughter has chosen to leave home to go live with her dad. She will turn 12years in 3 weeks. How many ways can a heart shatter?

    We are only travelling this path for a short time, and so it is most imperative that we honour our Soul’s journey and be present in all of the emotional turmoil that life brings, including both the joys and the grief.

    May we all remember that in truth, there is no separation and that we are all eternally interconnected, even when it does’t feel like.
    Thank you April or your words of honesty that touch me deeply.

    Be kind to yourself.
    Love and healing balm to us all.

    • Stella

      Sending much love and big hugs to you Clairessense!
      The colour Orange deals with the sacral chakra, our umbilical connections, creativity
      and where we process shock. Do you have an Orange coloured pashmina or throw you
      can wrap around your self for comfort and healing!
      All things are temporary and ever changing in nature. Praying for a miracle for you.xx

    • April

      Oh, Clairessence, I’m so sorry to hear about your loss of your daughter’s companionship! I hope she’ll come to realize that there really is nothing like a mother’s love, and that all of this in hindsight will just look like the road that ultimately brought you closer. Thank you for sharing your sympathy for me at a time when you’re hurting so much. I apologize that it’s taken me so long to respond. Be well. xoxo

  • RonjaThePigeon

    So sorry to hear you’ve lost another chum. I guess it’s doubly painful to be stuck at home all the time which will make the absence even more emphatic.

    Here in the UK one of the hardest things about the lockdown, and the thing that will stick in my memory when I look back, was that the day the lockdown was announced was literally the day Spring suddenly happened – and it’s been a brilliant, summer-warm blue sky dose of gorgeousness and blossom after a crappy wet winter, continuing through all these weeks. And none of us are allowed to go and enjoy it! I see the odd jogger and cyclist doing their officially sanctioned allowance of exercise along empty sun drenched roads, and I feel like I’m in the Truman Show.

    I enjoyed the discussion about the Cardinal signs et al. I’ve been studying astrology for years but you always bring a fresh way of looking at things. Thank you, and I hope these difficult months will pass for you soon.

    • April

      Thank you, RonjaThePigeon, so much. You are so right, that Spring seems to have burst forth all warm and fragrant at the very moment we’re discouraged from enjoying the outdoors! I’m very glad to hear the discussion of cardinal signs was helpful – and thank you so much for your sympathy and kindness about the loss of my little friend. Apologies for the delay in responding… xoxo

  • Jacqueline

    So sorry for your loss of dear Spike.

    • April

      Thank you very much, Jacqueline. He was dear indeed. I miss him so much. I appreciate your taking the time to share your sympathy, and I’m sorry it took me so long to respond. xoxo

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