Mercury in Retrograde: a timeless explanation to, seemingly uncalled for, utter misery

This photo is the artist property of Nicole Felicity. Taken at Central Park, New York.

This photo is the artist property of Nicole Felicity. Taken at Central Park, New York.

  • A deep cough that won’t subdue
  • A groggy voice that won’t awaken
  • Untimely bloating and facial breakouts
  • Fatigue
  • Hot flashes
  • Weakened ability to communicate efficiently

They say that this is time, the change of the seasons, where the masses will find themselves sick and miserable.

In the northeastern section of the United States, the summers are warm, and August uncomfortably sticky. Though Autumn officially begins in late September, the majority of the month can prove to be just as unbearably humid, if not more-so. In Pennsylvania, we grew up fondly referring to this phenomenon as an “Indian Summer”. And though we wanted to find refuge in the air conditioned indoors, as children, we still chose to bake in the sun, knowing that the approaching kiss of Jack Frost would stubbornly linger in the air.

Separately, the symptoms I have listed above, would most likely be diagnosed as a head cold from the abrupt weather change. Maybe, in concern to the sudden irritability and emotional disinterest, seasonal depression.

I, just as recently as two weeks ago, found myself to be guilty of such self-diagnoses. However, when I noticed that my symptoms weren’t adding up, and my body wasn’t reacting to the typical medicines, I was lost to find another explanation. That was until, spirit guides and guardian angels willing, I stumbled across an Instagram post that made sense of my frustrating ailments: the procession of Mercury in Retrograde. 

Was that string of words as confusing to you as it was the first time I had been presented with them? If yes, than I feel you.

The prospect of learning astrology has always been a taunting one for me. It’s an area of study that appears to be so complex and I’ve always associated it with a lot of memorization and charting. Because of this, I tried to reassure myself, even in the midst of undertaking my spiritual journey, that I could always remember the importance of astrology, but leave the actual study of it on the back-burner. In short, if I didn’t mess with it, it wouldn’t mess with me.

These past two weeks proved that theory, and hope, very wrong.

I mentioned in my previous post, that my family suffered a great loss. I had taken personal time to travel back to Pennsylvania and spent a few days coping and also be the support my loved ones needed. I quickly noticed, other than being obviously upset, that my older sister was not feeling well at all. She was suffering from the usual: headache, runny nose, sore throat, fever, and (okay, maybe not so usual) deep cough. My mom had already called her out on a respiratory infection because these were symptoms she just couldn’t seem to shake.

We’ve always been close, in age and attachment, so I didn’t let this bother me; we’ve been invading each others spaces since the day I’d been born. I was also playing under the assumption that, because I had just gotten over a head cold I suffered from a week or two prior, that my immune system would toughen up against anything contagious she had.

Well, about two days in, what should annoy the eff out of my while trying to watch some afternoon television? A cough like you wouldn’t believe.

Now, when I get a cold, the first symptom is usually always a sore, scratchy throat that I wake up to. I’ll sneeze, I’ll eventually sniffle, but I’m not usually a cougher. And these monsters were absolute rib-rattling suckers -yet, just rib-rattling suckers.

Of course I immediately thought, “well misjudged that one, better stay away from your relatives”, and decided to wait-out the remaining signs of head cold Hell. Yet, those signs didn’t come. Just this awful cough that followed me back to school, woken up my roommate numerous times, interrupted all of my classes, and still is sitting in my chest as I type this, just like a monster waiting to escape my cave of a throat.

The misery is real.

Now wrapped up with the things I have listed above? A nightmare.

The other symptoms, again separately, are things I had taken a notice to, but didn’t pay much mind about. For example, just the other day, I was headed to my Theology and New Media class. To get between buildings I walk outside and always wear an extra layer I can remove as needed; not just for the weather but because this school cannot decide on a consistent temperature. I get into the classroom, take a seat to start setting up my materials, and turned, almost instinctively to the random girl sitting next to me, and said (oh so delicately) “it’s hot as Hell in here.” She looked at me like I had three heads, and shook her head in disbelief. She said “what?”, like she hadn’t heard me correctly, “you said like Hell? It’s freezing in here. Here, feel me.” And she thrust her arm out for me take hold of. According to her, and the guy next to her who was listening, it was really cold in that particular classroom. I shrugged, and offered her my jacket because I sure wasn’t going to be wearing it during that hour.

Physical ailments, such as the hot flashes and the groggy throat, I don’t think twice about. However, the emotional distresses I go through, especially now, get a lot more consideration. The greatest of which is: I sleep. Like, a lot. An abnormal amount of sleep at any time of any day and in any place my body deems suitable. It’s sickening, because I am never not tired. It’s such an internal struggle to stop myself getting comfortable in the middle of the day, even if it’s just to check my phone, because I will be tempted to just close my eyes and drift off. I waste hours in naps I know I physically don’t need.

This fatigue can take over the interest of other commitments. School work, extracurricular activities, exploring outside, just don’t seem important when the Tiredness hits.  And I know I haven’t covered this in great detail on this blog yet, but the last time such Tiredness hit me, my situation, to put it lightly, did not go well. I can recognize the similarities between the two occasions, and it’s terrifying. In fact, I started making appointments with my college’s mental health counselors to keep my emotions as on check as possible.

Oh, and those other emotions? Other than not-caring about the things I enjoy: extreme irritability, feelings of isolation, and sudden fits of tears. And I’m not a crier, my programming is a bit too stubborn for daily tears.

If you can relate to any of this, God bless you if all of this, than you can understand how frustrating it is to know all of these things are wrong, but not having a feasible explanation. Because without an explanation, there is no cure. Without a hope for a cure, there is no reason to try to improve. Again, hello!, why the last bout of Tiredness didn’t end well.

So that Instagram post I mentioned? It read like Gospel, and with each word I could feel myself relaxing with the familiarity and agreement. This woman, again thanks guides and guardians, also had a supplementary vlog on the matter. What did this all come down to? That terrifying phrase: Mercury in Retrograde.

I couldn’t being to explain as eloquently as she has, so I’ll link to her Youtube channel here, in hopes others can take away as much information and guidance as I have.

To make some reference, she talks about how this Astrology zone, the one of Mercury in Retrograde, is one of Ascension into a higher spiritual awakening. It’s impacting everybody, everywhere, though those with an already strong bond to spiritual awareness is effected differently and with lack of finesse. Our bodies are expelling the bad energy of our past, and are trying desperately to cleanse themselves. The coughing, for example, is our Heart Chakra expelling the negativity we have built up. It’s persistent, but necessary to the betterment of our futures.

She makes many other fascinating points as well, but I’ll wrap up on this particular idea. This time does suck, but there is a community of others providing the support and advice that can lessen the pressing weight of an otherwise lonely period. If you’re like me, and discover that you can’t handle these physical and emotional changes on your own, it’s completely normal and accepted to find community. In fact, it’s encouraged! My community right now is with my counselor and the onscreen words of others; something I would have been ashamed of in a past Age, but one I currently seek and embrace entirely.

My ears are, of course, also opened to anyone who would like to share in their experiences as well. Reaching out through comments and though the arealmtoshare email address is more than welcome. And hopefully, my posts can provide to that needed sense of community. You know, writing isn’t always easy, and sometimes it’s a real push to open up a new draft, but than I remember the good that this sharing is doing. It’s a form of meditation for myself, to collect my thoughts, but is also a possible tool for others. That is all the motivation I need.

Until that next post…

~Stay Spooky~,

Nicole Felicity

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