Saturn return – an astrological transit that occurs when the planet Saturn returns to the same place in the sky that it occupied at the moment of a person’s birth.-good ole Wikipedia
If you’re at all into astrology, perhaps you’ve heard of this phenomenon—this, “Saturn Return”?
A “Return”, of course, isn’t exclusive to Saturn by any means; any time a planet returns to the spot where it was when you were born, you’ll experience a “Return” of that corresponding planet, a time for you to review the lessons associated with that planet and step into a new cycle of your life.
Simple enough, right? New stuff is exciting!
Yet the Saturn Return is sort of… infamous, if you will. Because Saturn takes much longer than most planets to return—roughly 29.5 years—by the time it finds you again, things can be more than a little… erm… tense.
What’s a Saturn Return?
You see, Saturn, being the universal “taskmaster” (or um… drill sergeant), is kind of like that long lost, deadbeat dad you never actually wanted. He was out of the picture when you were growing up, but now that you’re getting up there in years, he’s come back to make sure you’ve learned your lessons and are officially ready to “adult.”
Because Saturn’s orbits take nearly thirty years, most people only ever experience two Saturn Returns in their lifetimes: the first, when they’re between the ages of 27-31 and the second, between the ages of 57-60.
Today we’ll be focusing on the first Saturn Return, because it is—supposedly—more challenging, and I just so happen to be in the trenches of mine at present! (Saturn in Capricorn – w00t w00t!)
The First Saturn Return
My personal favorite definition of this Saturn Return is that it’s your “cosmic bar mitzvah.” Depending on the society in which you grew up, you were likely taught to believe that you had “become an adult” at various ages, no?
Bar Mitzvahs, Quinceañeras, Coming of Age day, the sweet sixteen—the age of adulthood in question varies from culture to culture, but one thing seems consistent across the board: by our mid-twenties, we’re adults.
…Or are we? Because, according the universe, that is simply not so.
The way astrology sees it, we’re children until we’ve made it through our first Saturn Return. Maybe those other ages were the midterms, but this? This is the final exam. It’s the coming of age ceremony to END ALL COMING OF AGE CEREMONIES. The chance to put everything we’ve learned over the past three decades to the test and see how we check out.
And Saturn ain’t the kind of warm-and-fuzzy teacher that’ll just give you an “A” for effort; just because you’ve managed to survive your Saturn Return, doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re an adult! If you mess this up then, well… look out, second Saturn Return!
Feeling the pressure yet?
Finding Your Saturn Sign
As we learned in calculating your element, all of the planets fall into varying signs in our birth charts—not just the sun. And Saturn is no exception. Depending on which sign it’s placed in, the theme of your particular Saturn Return can vary. Though that’s another post all on its own!
For now, you’ll just want to know your Saturn sign so you can know whether you’ve recently finished your Saturn Return, are currently in it, or are about to be.
Go to astro.com, click on “Free Horoscopes” and then “Natal Chart, Ascendant,” and proceed with the prompts for guest users. In no time at all, you should have your very own chart, where you can easily see what sign Saturn’s in!
Are YOU in the Trenches?
Pay attention if your Saturn is in “Sag” (Sagittarius), “Cap” (Capricorn), or “Aqu” (Aquarius). Sagittarius means you recently finished your Return! Yay! Do you feel like you just came out of the trenches or what?
If your Saturn is in Aquarius, nice – you still have about a year and a half or so to prepare yourself, as Saturn will move into Aquarius next. But currently, Saturn’s in Capricorn… so if you have Saturn in Capricorn (like me), congrats—you’re going through your Saturn Return right now! Don’t you feel special?
If this sounds painfully familiar, no worries – that’s why we’re going to get into how to survive your Saturn Return—at least, according to someone who is currently going through her first Return…
DISCLAIMER: I am no Saturn Return expert! I’m just feeling my way through like the rest of you… though I’d like to think I’ve already learned A LOT. A lot that—hopefully—can save other people from THE STRUGGLE THAT BE REALETH.
Survival Tip #1: It’s All a Test
A drill sergeant, deadbeat dad, colossal titan, and abusive Stewie—yes, maybe it sounds like I’ve been demonizing Saturn thus far, but I promise: it’s only in good fun. At the end of the day, all he really is, is a teacher—a teacher that only really wants you to reach your highest possible potential.
Sure, his methods may often seem cruel, unusual, and just plain… abusive?—but it’s all a matter of tough love. As much as we hate to admit it, there are some things we just won’t internalize until we’ve learned them the hard way. Learning said things may not be pleasant, but once we have, we’ll never forget them.
So every time Saturn seems to take a proverbial shit all over my life, I ask myself first, “What’s the lesson here?” Next, “How could this be happening for me—not to me?” And finally, “How can I transform this?”
Survival Tip #2: Stay Focused
Because the first Saturn Return is all about adulting, this is the time when you’ll likely decide “what you want to be when you grow up” or even who you want to be with. People that get married or commit to careers prior to their first Return may find that they’ve outgrown those jobs and relationships and may even see them crumble during the Return.
People who haven’t, on the contrary, may suddenly feel the pressure to commit to something where they hadn’t previously. For me, personally, I’ve felt the call to finally put my all into my writing. I had jumped between jobs, locations, and hobbies until about age twenty-six, but since then I’ve felt this insatiable drive to write, write, write.
Whatever you feel pulled toward during your Return, I believe the key is stay on track—no matter what. Saturn will throw Boss after Boss at you to try and rattle you—to discourage you. Often it will feel like you’re continually banging your head against a brick wall…
Keep going anyways. It’s all a test of your resolve—Saturn wants to be sure this is what you really want. And if it is—if it really is—it will be worth it in the end.
Survival Tip #3: Let it Go
Seriously. This earworm of a song is THE anthem for the Saturn Return. As you may have surmised from my Kylo Ren post, I’ve had to learn to let a lot of things go these past few years. And—in essence—letting things go is what the Saturn Return is all about.
Once you’re focused on what you want, all the things preventing you from getting it will start showing up left and right: things that previously served you, but now hold you back.
So it’s time to kiss your little kid shoes goodbye and put your big kid booties on, my friend. Saturn’s going to take them from you whether you like it or not—so better to just surrender and allow whatever needs to happen to happen.
Just remember: pain is inescapable, but suffering is optional.
Survival Tip #4: You Will be Rewarded
Now, unfortunately I can’t (yet) speak from experience on this one—but seeing all the Saturn Return successes out there keeps me going.
JK Rowling, for example, struggled with divorce, poverty, life as a single mom, and the actual act of writing her book (it’s hard work, dammit!) during her Return. Harry Potter was published shortly after her Return had completed, and the rest is history!
Another example—and a specifically Saturn in Capricorn one—is Simon Cowell. In one interview he recounts how he “lost everything” at age thirty and even had to move back in with his parents! He says that, in retrospect, losing everything was a good thing because it taught him the value of money. And I guess it did, because now we know how rich and famous he is.
If you’re having trouble believing this whole Saturn Return thing, just look up the biographies of some of your favorite celebrities. Go on. Do it. (You know you want to.)
You’ll probably notice a common theme among all of them: that their life somehow went to shit in their late twenties—but—that some of their greatest successes in life followed soon after.
So stay strong, my fellow Saturn Returnees. The road may be rough and littered with bloodthirsty Bosses, but your real, actual, “adulting” adult self awaits you on the other side—the one who’s lived out your wildest dreams, racked up an impressive amount of trophies in the video game of life, and kicked said life’s proverbial ass while living to tell the tale.
The question is: will you be brave enough to cross the gap to meet them?
Tell me, adventurer, what sign is your Saturn in? Have you already survived a Return (or two)? Are you in the trenches right now? And am I the only who feels like surviving the Saturn Return is a little like surviving beyond The Wall in the world of Attack on Titan?
What I’m Playing: Skyrim – Currently debating… Imperial Legion or Stormcloaks? Both seem equally horrible… (Why does this give me PTSD re: IRL politics?)
What I’m Watching: West World – I really enjoyed the Ghost Nation episode! Akecheta is hella interesting!
What I’m Listening to: Sarah M. Chappell’s “So You Wanna Be a Witch?” podcast – This one’s new for me, but I’m liking the whole “soul-centered entrepreneurs” concept!
What I’m Reading: Conversatons with God, Book 2 – Yet again I find myself in the CWG rabbit hole, and yet again I find my mind blown.
What I’m Writing: Brainstorming characters for my upcoming NaNo novel, “The Mercenary’s Pact.”
What I’m Contemplating: Entity attachment. So I just talked to a psychic the other day and it turns out I had two “attachments,” my mom had three, and my brother had six. …Oh, and there’s a portal to another dimension under our house! Apparently that’s a thing.