I have a practice of consistent self reflection inspired by astrology, aka archetypes informed by celestial bodies and attributed characteristics, and it’s been fruitful for personal growth. This process has plugged me in to the collective growth, too.
I started writing this in January—Capricorn season. The end of December (around the time of the winter solstice) till the end of January is governed by Capricorn, an archetype that is governed by Saturn. Capricorn implores structure, authority, and (a reckoning of) consequence of actions. It’s a sign that is connected to Earth, which makes the overtone of Capricorn season one that encourages level-headedness that comes from being rooted in structure, authority, responsibility.
Capricorn season is the time of the year that I have struggled the most. I had a lot of fear come up in prior years. Fear of my level of self responsibility (as a solopreneur)–if I don’t hustle my work, I don’t have an employer who will fill in the gaps. It’s a risky business venture. And, my identity as a successful solopreneur is intimately connected to my identity an independent woman in the business world. If I am not successful as a solopreneur, am I less successful as a woman?
As I navigated the yoga of this relationship (woman, responsibility, fear), I had a a major breakthrough: I learned that my individual identity as a successful solopreneur woman is intimately connected to the collective identity of women that is an uprising of the divine feminine. It’s not about being equal to men. It’s about being able to handle ourselves as women, honoring the explorations and vocations that feel good to us. The Capricorn in all of us asks us to build, and what we build is a combination of individual and collective efforts.
I’ve previously written about my determination to support myself as a solopreneur. This year’s round of reflections were done while I was on a sabbatical in Mexico. The ability to do this (take time and be in a foreign place) mirrored the gifts of self employment: I have time and location flexibility. I decided to take the month of January to do minimal work. I focused on light writing projects rather than heavier editing ones. It wasn’t vacation; it was simply a time of working at minimal capacity. This ease in workload would be rejuvenative. I went to a location that allowed me to be close to the land and water, which I also found rejuvenative, and camp in my truck with solar equipment. All of this was purchased with the financial gain from my successful labor as a solopreneur. As I traveled down the Baja peninsula to the beach, people asked me: How can you afford this traveling lifestyle? And: Where is your husband? Who supports you? I always replied that I work as I travel. I am location independent. And I ignored the other question. Women don’t need men to support them financially (or give them permission to do what they want to do).
As I sat on the beach, I found my thoughts taking me back to a memory: When I was in eighth grade, a few neighborhood girls and I were hanging out. They wore makeup and made out with boys and didn’t spend their afternoons doing homework. I liked them. They were fun to me. They accepted me. One afternoon, bored with talking about bands and eating Ritz crackers with icing (our regular afterschool activities), we needed something else to do. I’m not sure how we came up with the idea, but we decided to use a pin, a pen (to make an ink mark), and card to pierce our belly buttons. The next day at school, I was pulled aside by several teachers and told that if I hung out with “those girls”—it was a bad thing for me. I was told that there had been an incident, and that one of “those girls” had pierced her belly button—”A dangerous stunt,” said the woman teacher. “You’re a straight-laced, straight A student, you are a good influence for those girls. Do you know anything about the incident?” the teacher asked. “No,” I lied. “Oh, good,” she said. “I knew you were too smart to do something stupid.” If only the teachers had asked me to lift my shirt, they would have seen that I too had pierced myself. It was boredom. It was rebellion. It was pre-teen angst. At the time, I was just happy to not be in trouble, but that transaction stayed with me.
As I was on the beach reflecting on Capricorn, the structures we inherit, I wrote: Who the fuck gets to define what a good girl does? Good girls don’t rebel? I asked rhetorically. And what else don’t they do?
I realized that’s part of the reason why Capricorn tweaks me
Good girls don’t strike out on their own financial/career path.
Good girls don’t challenge the existing structure of things.
Good girls don’t define their trajectories because there is already a trajectory defined for them.
I’m all about breaking that outdated structure.
Thing is, I’m not looking for equality with men; I’m looking for solvency. I think the highest expression of empowered womanhood is the ability to chart your own course and break even there. Thrive through those relative circumstances.
As I sat on the beach, I realized how this reflection took me under the hood of the relationship I have with the Capricorn archetype. It was me melting my fear, one that told me I can’t handle this vocation. Me realizing that I can, and I’m doing well at it, even if other people still question or judge. Me realizing that I embody some of the old and outdated patriarchal standards, and I need to offload them.
I wrote declarations in my journal: I’m not in business as a female solopreneur to prove a point. I am in this occupation because this is the lifestyle that I want to have. I’m interested in meeting other women who honor the urges they follow. It’s about achieving my goals as an independent person. It’s about achieving our goals to be women who define our own roles.
A month later, upon writing and offering this blog, I feel clearer than ever on my relationship to Capricorn and the structures that be. I feel more rooted in my true self. I feel convinced that the collective women uprising will create the structures that will allow women to be whatever girls they choose to be.