The Summer Solstice: The Turning of the Wheel


At this solstice a very unsettled and confused energy surrounds us. The Sun at zero Cancer is near a retrograde Mercury at 27 Gemini. As we know retrograde planets apply to redoing, relearning and reconstructing, and Mercury, a representative of our awareness and thinking and collectively how information moves between us and how we communicate, is asking for a turn around, a retrace, a re-look at how things have been. This signature shows that the next few months will be saturated with how to move forward by redoing, or more so, rethinking how we do things. ~ Cosmic Intelligence Agency

Summer’s here.

It’s the longest day of the year: the summer solstice.

It’s a day to set your intention for the rest of the summer season. It’s a day to celebrate the full return of the light (in the northern hemisphere).

To me, it’s always felt like a day of rebirth. We are six months from the darkest, shortest day of the year. We’ve survived another winter, and weathered another spring. Now it is time to watch whatever we’ve planted over the past months sprout and grow.

It’s a demarcation of joy.

Here we are again: wading into ripening fields of wheat, into sunflowers in bloom, into bees pollinating our oranges and peppers, into hummingbirds and nectar and an aching azure sky. We can sleep in the tall grass or a hammock, we can laze and swim and listen to wild calling birds. The whole world is golden and slow, like a hive dripping with honey.

And this summer solstice…

Turning things around. Retracing our steps. Re-envisioning life on earth. Reconstructing and relearning and rethinking.

We’re being asking to look at everything through a different lens.

For me, this is showing up as surprising upheavals in my personal life.

I will soon take on the role of caretaker for my mother. After years of invitations, she’s finally embraced the idea of becoming a snowbird. She’ll winter in Arizona and summer in Seattle. She’s making this change not because she wants to, but because circumstances beyond her control, force it.

No matter why it has happened, for me, it’s good news.

Not that I don’t worry about the responsibility I am taking on; I do.

But I trust myself to care for her, and I want to have her with me, something that hasn’t been true in her current situation.

Little Earthquakes, Everywhere.

He who puts out his hand to stop the wheel of history will have his fingers crushed.Lech Walesa

So, the metaphorical ground beneath me is shaking, violently.

And I am clearing out a room for my mother.

Our roles are reversing.

I’ve ordered a new shower curtain and emptied the medicine cabinet in the guest bathroom. I’ve shredded pounds and pounds of papers and re-organized my files, so I can move my office and set up her bedroom. It’s something she’s done for me countless times.

She’s giving up most of what she owns, so the move can happen quickly. She’ll bring a small portion of her most beloved belongings with her, but not much.

“Bring what you love,” I told her.

And while I ready things on my end, she’s packing and stripping her house clean.

Moving again at the age of 79. I can’t imagine.

It feels a little like being torn in half for both of us. Part of me desperately wants her here, and part of me is terrified because this will be her last stop through this life. She was born in Arizona, and now, she will likely die here.

A Burden Shared is a Burdened Halved.

For others, these changes are showing up as fissures in their relationships, as divorce, as illness.

One of my closest friends is surrounded by numerous family members dying of cancer. Another is dealing with the addiction of someone she loves deeply. Others struggle with chronic health problems, with dying parents, with financial collapse.

Everyone’s got a full plate. We’ve all got our share (whether it feels like a fair portion or not). Somehow, there’s comfort in knowing we’re all saddled with our own burdens. No one’s immune.

At mid-life, it feels strange to stand here, welcoming the summer, ushering in such huge change.

Another season blusters in, and the cycle continues.

Life is a banquet. Try everything.

These days, when I look in the mirror I see my mother’s face.

How is that possible?

It seems impossible that so many years have passed since I spent June days learning to sew and ride horses at my friend Nancy’s house. Feral girls, we swam and talked and tramped through the long, hot days. The air smelled like lilacs and Walla Walla sweet onions, like tar and wet earth.

Now, Nancy’s long married and living someplace in Canada, or so I hear. I last saw her the summer I turned twelve.

And I am 1,500 miles south of that patch of dirt we called home, watching desert birds, puzzling out the circuitous path life takes.

What surprises me is that it never fails to surprise me. I awaken to find everything’s shifted, almost overnight.

Only the sky and the passing seasons remain constant. Only they can see the lovely patterns they make.

© 2014  Shavawn M. Berry All rights reserved

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