The last day of the current Mercury Retrograde is this Sunday. Monday we enter the post-shadow period until November 2. During this retrograde, I’ve been having deja vu. Situations that arise are same old, same old. I’ve seen this movie before, kind of thing. People in my life and I replay the same story, but since it’s retrograde, I am more aware of rewriting the ending.

Pain is one of those recurring themes. Lots of old pain is rising up out of the depths. Mental, emotional, physical pain. We feel this pain deeply. How to cast a different narrative, which is the gift of Mercury Retrograde – or at any time? I once read that karma is created every moment. It is just making a different choice when something similar comes up. How can we make a different choice with pain?

We often feel pain with people we love when family members do the same annoying or hurtful behaviors over and over. Whether they choose to be aware and change or not is their business. We can’t control them – although I did used to try. We can’t make someone understand. We can’t understand why they are doing what they are doing on their path, and they can’t understand our path. And they may not be capable or willing to be aware and thus choose to make changes in their behavior. With awareness, we can make a choice.

Our business is to own our responsibility, express ourselves clearly (to ourselves and others as safe or appropriate) and then what do we need to do to take loving care of ourselves. We may need to stay angry/hurt/disappointed for 24, 36 or 48 hours, or more. We have compassion for ourselves. We are doing the best we can. And then, we begin the process of letting go as soon as we can. Can you tell what my issue has been this week?

A familiar situation occurs, and at first, we start replaying the old script. If we can be aware of what we are thinking/doing, we can write a new script.

I love this wisdom from Portia Nelson:

I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost… I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
But, it isn’t my fault.
It still takes me a long time to get out

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in. It’s a habit.
My eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault. I get out immediately.

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

I walk down another street.

― Portia Nelson, There’s a Hole in My Sidewalk:
The Romance of Self-Discovery

The next time we notice the same old thing is happening again, maybe we can do something differently. Maybe, just maybe, we could walk down another street.