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Ode to a Leo

I’ve decided that for the coming solar eclipse on August 21st, I am going to change the story. I am not interested in rewriting history, but just as an artist intuitively tweaks their painting, poetry or stone sculpture to bring out the unique beauty and ultimate message, I am beginning to view myself in those terms. I am the art and the artist. There are constants about who I am. The essence that hasn’t changed since I was a little girl: thoughtful, defiant, sensitive and independent. I’m still in love with nature and beauty and sorrow and depth. I am not interested in becoming something new or shedding my old skin. I am talking about working with the wonder that already exists.

There are parts of your chart that speak to who you are on a fundamental level, but the beautiful thing about learning the meaning of the placement of your moon and stars is that you are also able to see your potential. You can see where you have been and where you are going. But most important is learning where you can stretch yourself out. Today is the full moon eclipse and at the end of the month is the Great American Eclipse. Both are giving us huge opportunities to let go, open up to what is possible by releasing negative and deceptive thoughts. And it just happens to be Leo season. Leo is a fire sign and Leo season is an opportunity to burn it up and set your soul free. It was high time that I started giving some attention to the fact that I was I born with my moon in Leo.

So, I began thinking about the fun-loving, spirited and confident Leo. The Leo that radiates the warmth of the bright sun. The Leo that rules the heart. The Leo that brings the party to the party. I thought to myself, I know this Leo. I’ve known her my entire life. She is my sister.

Ever since I was a young, scrawny, awkward girl, I’ve been in awe of her. Images flew through my mind of her running laps around our tiny childhood home in the summer, her throwing leaves wildly in the air during the fall. She was an energetic, magnetic, curly-haired ball of fire, full of so much life that I was dumfounded by how she was given so many gifts. Everyone she met loved her and everywhere she went she made fast friends. She was so unselfconscious that I was jealous. I had no idea how she moved so easily in the world. And even as we grew into adults, and life seemed less than fair for her, she continued to offer up her resilience from a seemingly indestructible heart. Over and over again. And as she wondered how I was so strong and everything seemed to go my way, I knew she wasn’t aware of the burden of always being so careful. Her and I are the quintessential yin and yang of my parents love. We couldn’t be any other way. Until now.

I’ve watched her be fearless. I’ve stood by knowing I couldn’t survive her life. And yet whenever she steps into view, you see her beautiful lion’s mane and her big heart and bigger love.

She is what I am trying to cultivate in myself. She is the part of me that I have been afraid of. So I am sending out my big lion roar in her honor. I am not fearless. But I will consciously strive to be brave enough.

If you are not into astrology or obsessed like I am with the cycles of the moon, you can still set an intention for this coming August eclipse. Who doesn’t need an excuse to reset. Astrologers say this is a time when you just can’t bring the baggage with you anymore. Look at life and see what’s too heavy to keep dragging along.

I started my home yoga practice again. A daily practice. Twenty minutes a day. I roll out my mat, set my timer, crank my music and sun salutation away. This one simple change for the past week has changed my whole perspective. Really. Life. Altering. The other day I paused with my hands in prayer, sweating, heart beating and for a moment I swear I felt God pulsating within me. My vibration was so high that I couldn’t get the smile off my face. One simple change.

For me, like many Air signs who are writers, thinkers, brooders and seekers, we spend a lot of time in our head. That means working a lot with shadow sides and emotional landscapes. It wasn’t until I moved my body that I realized how out of balance I had become. Overthinking is stagnation, paralysis, and the inability to make clear decisions. By moving my body, I was moving my Libra scales back into balance.

I am an advocate for being exactly who you are. I love who I am. But is there a place you can balance out a tendency that has become habitual or non serving? Is there a way to challenge yourself?

I read a quote on Instagram that said, No mud, No Lotus. I immediately liked it. But as much as I love the jewels that are born from the struggle, because let’s be honest, there is always some kind of struggle, I often forget that it’s also nice to lay the weapons down and be a little less careful. To play more and worry less.

It can feel uneasy to develop parts of ourselves that we have hidden or misunderstood. It is also incredibly freeing. Just knowing that there is fire in me gives me new joy. Knowing I had an example my entire life of the qualities I want to cultivate in myself is no accident either.

So to my sister, and all the fiery Leos out there – Thanks for always shining your warmth and brave hearts. Happy Birthday to you!!!!

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