What makes today so special? Well, for one thing, it’s my solar return. Zero degrees Aquarius, a mere 52 years after I made my entrance into this beautiful world. For another thing, Pluto enters Aquarius. Cazimi!! The Sun conjunct Pluto. And finally, Pluto the powerhouse is conjunct with my Solar Return! Pow!!
So, what of it? I’m feeling pensive and excited about my birthday. How could I not with Pluto on my side. My natal sun is on the cusp of the 12th house (cue scary music). Historically, astrologers tell us that this is not the most comfortable place for the Sun to be. Planets in the twelfth house are sort of hiding deep in our subconscious. This is not ideal for the sun. The sun wants to be seen.
Now anyone that knows me knows that I am not an introvert. My sun is definitely not hiding. But….there is a world where sometimes I hide myself from myself. I was blessed with natural grace and charm (thank you Venus on my Ascendant) and I also have a good brain and am naturally curious and studious. My chart ruler, Jupiter is in its home, Sagittarius in the 10th and my Mercury is in Capricorn. I’m a life-long learner and I tend to have amazing luck and anything I set my mind to, I can eventually master. But even with all of these blessings, I don’t always put myself out there.
Considering I spend a bunch of my time on stage entertaining people, one might assume that I am very comfortable putting myself out there. I am. And I am not. I am a very lazy artist. I don’t tend to create great works unless I am up against a deadline. I’ve always been really good at homework. But I do lack discipline. I’m the kind of person that If I try just a little, I’ll do pretty good. But I spend a lot of time not doing. Or talking myself out of doing. It’s like there is a little voice in my head telling me that I’m not that good or girls like me don’t get to be…well, famous.
Yes, I had dreams of fame as a child. I had big dreams. I wanted fame. But I didn’t always put myself in situations where I would be prepared for the leading role. I quit Howard University where I applied and got in as a Fine Arts Student. I changed my major to French because I guess I figured that was more practical. I quit Howard because I didn’t feel like I fit in. I was a little too bohemian and queer. Looking back, I probably should have stayed in the Fine Arts department where all the weirdos lived. But I always managed to fall into kind of an artsy lifestyle. Dancing in clubs on boxes. Discovering street theater. Making my way into the downtown art world of NYC. But it was always on a very community arts level. Which is fine. It suited me. Making art with friends for friends. Building my friend circle with the folks I performed with.
Since 2008, Pluto has been cruising through my 11th house of community and it was during this time that I really found mine. Queers. Queer women of color. Artists. I was in several artistic communities and I discovered that I was good at producing and hosting and creating an environment where folks came together to laugh and love and make art together.
But now Pluto is about to enter my 12th house. Honestly, I don’t know what to expect. Optimistically, I am hoping that Pluto helps me to discover my own power. I remember being a little girl looking through Dance Magazine. I would pursue the audition notices at the back and somehow I just believed that something was in the way of me getting into that show or that school or that program. Now, I’m Gen X, so when I was a little girl there weren’t a lot of black faces in the dance magazines. Maybe that had something to do with it. I didn’t see myself anywhere.
When Pluto was in Capricorn, I developed a show called Black Girl Ugly that navigated the issue of self-esteem in little black girls growing up in the good ole USA. I think, no, I know that I have to figure out how to shine as brightly as I can regardless of what I think the world thinks of me. I am ready to fully step into my power. Like on a subconscious level. Very 12th house.
In honor of Loraine Hansberry’s end of year lists (look it up), here’s one of my own.
THINGS I REALLY LIKE
Animals. I want to work at an animal sanctuary one day.
Astrology. I want to keep studying and teaching and transform into a wise old crone with stars in her eyes.
Sex. I want to have a lot of it with a lot of people who I love. I think I’m ready for a relationship again.
Travel. I want to master my digital nomad-ship.
Ships. I loved working on a ship. I made so many wonderful friends and not paying rent is awesome.
Successful culinary experimentation. Thank you NYTimes Cooking.
Tarot Cards. What a wonderful way to swim around in your own intuition.
My Mommy. She’s gorgeous and imperfect and funny as hell and I think I’m just like her.
My Sissy. A relationship that just keeps deepening. A friend for life. Someone who knows you like no other. And she thinks I’m the bee’s knees.
My niece. A beautiful woman who just had a baby! My first human that I’ve known every day of her life. So cool.
My nephew. It is so hard to be a teenager. And this guy is running, literally running all over the state winning track meets. Currently the second fastest sophomore in the state. Go, J!
420. Till death do us part.
House Music. Black People dancing until the wee hours. Yes, please. But also afternoon parties are the shit too (cuz I’m ole)
Baths. This should probably be number one.
Smelling like Amber.
Movies. Lots of Movies. I wanna write a screenplay one day. Well, I’ve written a 3-minute one but I wanna write a longer one. Maybe 15 minutes to start.
The internet. I love the internet. Curious about where did i see that actor before? Oh, yeah, that’s right? Who invented that thing that squeezes the water out of your laundry? The two rollers and a crank? A black woman, that’s who.
This is my solar return chart: Things I notice right away:
Transiting Venus is conjunct my natal Jupiter: Ok! I’m not mad that the two benifics are pairing up in my 10th house of Sagittarius. I’m going to harness this energy into my astrology work. I’m ready for my next growth spurt.
Sun and Pluto conjunct my natal Sun! I know that Pluto is generational but I swear that I’m already feeling this today. I had so much energy today and If I thought about someone, they called. OK, yes, it's my birthday and folks are calling but still. I’m looking forward to finally letting go of some old stories and revealing my most authentic self!
Saturn conjunct my Venus in the first. Saturn is changing the face of my whole life. I left Brooklyn (twice!) and I’m out here floating around the globe. Cool, and…..huh? Who am I now? What if who you are isn’t what you do? Oh shit, is Pluto in the 12th making me hella deep?
Chiron Return Continues: Not Black Girl Ugly. Black Girl Brilliant.
South Node is conjunct Uranus. Hmm, this feels like something being removed from my life suddenly. I did lose my dad recently. DNA definitely lives in the 8th house.
Transiting Venus Square Natal Pluto. It’s out of sign. Venus is at the end of Sag and Pluto at the beginning of Libra. This could be me feeling shy about letting people know that I’m out here casting charts and teaching astrology to folks. Venus is in the 10th house of careers and Pluto is in my Audience . This feels like me growing into career power while still struggling with allowing myself to exist in my full power
This writing was originally just for me but I thought I’d share. I used to write an annual letter to my email address book back when Yahoo Mail was RocketMail. This isn’t a recap of the past year. It’s more of an internal check-in…..but public.
I am Ashley Denise Brockington and I am a bad bitch.