Mercury is in retrograde again


Millie Alt

My favorite sky; it is so unimaginable that something so beautiful could create such turmoil.

Mercury is in retrograde again.

Truly, I think to myself, I have no idea what this means.

But my life has begun to seep slowly down the drain: leisurely, so I can make out each time a grain slips out of view, but so rapidly that my hurried, busy fingers have no chance of keeping up.

Mercury is in retrograde, and so I have something to blame other than myself for losing my grip on feelings I thought I had in check, feelings I kept in check for months, feelings I fought tooth and nail to hide in the depths of my brain.

My control wanes with the moon.

Mercury is in retrograde, and my life has changed irrevocably in the past month. I blame the heavens because to blame the earth is to blame myself, and to blame myself is to relinquish those last threads of control I have left.

I can’t cry anymore.

Months ago, crying came easily. A bad day, a slip-up, a smile to the wrong person and receiving one back—I could cry at the drop of a hat. I have lost that outlet.

I find myself trapped in my head every now and then. I think things I know will never lead to good, but I am trapped, and Mercury is in retrograde, so what can I do?

Even with Mercury in retrograde, and my life slipping through the cracks of my mind, my life is still mine.

I can do nothing. My life is slipping through my fingers like the grains of sand between my toes a few short months ago on the beaches of a foreign country with no cares in the world.

But now, I am preparing to be a new kind of leader. I am seeing friends, people I have known for a lifetime, disappear from my life without a look back. I am realizing that soon, oh, so very soon, I will be the one leaving, leaving behind everything I have ever known—everyone I have ever known.

Everyone I love.

Mercury is in retrograde, but even if it wasn’t, I ask myself, would anything be different?

Would the alignment of the stars shift some cosmic balance and tip the scales in my favor?

Would I still be able to cry?

No. The answer is always no.

My life is exactly that: mine. My thoughts are my thoughts; my feelings are my feelings; my experiences are my experiences; my friends are my friends. They are mine.

And so—if, at some point, I don’t see them nearly every day, or I can’t turn to them and let out a burst of laughter at something that was only funny because it was shared, or I can’t watch them work and wonder what they are thinking, those experiences were still mine.

They are still mine.

Even with mercury in retrograde, and my life slipping through the cracks of my mind, my life is still mine.

And maybe, that is all the control I need.