(c)2009 by Donna Cunningham, MSW
Cancerians like myself are reputed to be highly emotional, to be sentimental about our families, to have great memories, and to be hung up on the past. The point of this post is to demonstrate that these traits are all tied together and feed on one another in ways that you wouldn’t suspect.
In order to do that, I’ll have to share the experiences that led me to these conclusions. One of my aims for this blog is to become comfortable with writing in a more self-revealing way. Unlike other goals for this blog, this one isn’t proving easy. I’m an intensely private person, for one thing, and for another, I’m afraid it would be boring to my readers.
But one of the rules I’ve set for myself here is that whatever keeps stirring to the surface for several days running, I must write about. What has persisted in stirring for the past several days, despite diligent efforts at distracting myself, is to come out into the open about my memory deficit. And to explore the connections between memory, emotion, and the sign Cancer.
No, to put your mind at ease right off the bat, I do not have Alzheimer’s. The top neurologist at Oregon Health Sciences University says so. After hours of exhaustive—and exhausting—testing, he says my memory is definitely not normal, but that I don’t have a single marker for Alzheimer’s.
I did have a head injury in a car accident in the late 1980s that changed my life in many difficult ways. Before that I could write for 12 hours a day when inspired, as in a book project. After the injury, it was difficult to work for more than two or three hours a day at anything that required intense concentration, including chart consultations.
I wound up leaving New York because I couldn’t earn enough of a living that way. And it’s why I seldom speak at conferences. Though I can write about what I know in short bursts, it’s difficult for me to remember the points I want to make when speaking, so I’m very tense when I lecture to large groups.
The head injury wiped out memories of what transpired a few years before and after the accident, and affected my ability to form short-term memory…which, ultimately, winds up causing long-term memory lacunae. To give an example, the more I learned about Priscilla Costello’s work, the more I admired her. (She’s an astrologer with a therapy background out of Toronto.) So, we were at a conference together several years back, and I went up to her and said, “I’m so glad to finally meet you.”
She stared at me, dumfounded. “Donna, we were roommates at the WRAC conference in Cleveland.”
How embarrassing is that?? After a multitude of embarrassing—or inconvenient—moments like that, I began to develop ways of covering up my memory problem. There are lots of workarounds for when you don’t remember a person’s name or where you met or what you talked about that was so important to them. (I’ll probably give workshops on how to do that as we old fart astrologers start to need them.)
I’ll give one example of a workaround. I probably shouldn’t tell you because it might be disillusioning to those who think our sessions are etched in my memory for all time. Within a day of the time I do a chart consult, I have no recollection whatsoever of what we talked about. When clients call back or when I meet them somewhere, they go on and on about what I said and how it all came true, and I don’t even recall doing a session with them. So I say, “Is that what I told you? Hmm. You know, I’m in somewhat of an altered state when I do a chart, so I don’t remember.”
Plausible. Possibly even partially true, but definitely a cover up. So, yes, up to the point when I had the neurological testing, I did quite a tap dance and even flat out lied to keep people from knowing about my memory deficit. Why would I do that, you wonder?
Weeeeeelllll, here goes with the self-revelation. I don’t talk about my family. At all. For all anyone in the field knows, I materialized here on this planet out of thin air. (Would that that were true!) And I doubt that I’ll ever write anything about them on this blog or anywhere else until the last member of my family of origin passes on, other than this one fact: my mother died of advanced Alzheimer’s at the age of 57. For real. Diagnosed by Cat Scan.
Then I read an article in one of those pop science mags about how Alzheimer’s could be hereditary, and it showed a fingerprint pattern of the type that they’d found ran in families. I looked down at my own fingerprints and freaked—they looked identical to the fingerprints in the magazine!!!!
Fortunately, I had a client at that time who was a criminologist, and I told her I would trade her a session if she’d take my fingerprints and see if they matched the image. She came and took them, and I don’t know which of us was more nervous. It turns out that fingerprint patterns are the reverse on paper of what they look like on your fingers. So my pattern wasn’t the same. Whew!! But the fear lingered, especially when one of my mom’s sisters came down with the disease, and so my memory problem became something I couldn’t share with anyone.
The reason I finally went to the neurologist was that several years back, my memory suddenly took a turn for the worse, and I was quite terrified. Providentially, there was an ad in the local senior newspaper looking for people with early Alzheimer’s to participate in a research study of the herb sage, which herbalists say helps memory. Their top researcher agreed to test me for participation in the study. I was intensely relieved by his ruling that I don’t have the disease.
Since then, I’ve been able to develop really useful workarounds for the things I am most likely to forget. Most of them rely on logic and consistency rather than on memory per se. I’ll write about them one day. But that’s not what I promised to explore in this piece. I said I was going to tie this all into a general principle about the sign Cancer, so let me get down to it.
A large part of our recollections of pivotal events and eras in our lives comes from the emotions that surround it. The memories that haunt us, that we can’t let go of, are those with unresolved emotional charges. (The converse is true in those who have no memory of their childhood. Many of them have experienced such extreme trauma in those early years that their brains blanked out and formed no memory of the event.)
Emotions can distort our perceptions of past events as well. Have you ever swapped family stories at a reunion, only to find that other family members tell an entirely different story about what happened?
At any rate, I now understand why my memory got so much worse suddenly that summer and fall. I had been undergoing months of extremely intense healing work that involved stripping emotional engrams of a wide range of painful events and situations from childhood that had their counterparts in adult life as well. And, no, it wasn’t Scientology but something very different that had much to do with the amygdala section of the brain. (See Thought Forms and the Brain.)
When I underwent the intensive healing and the emotions behind past events were stripped out, the memories went with it, and so suddenly—and temporarily—I was very hazy about much of my past as well. The long-term effects of that healing have been nothing short of a miracle. The past means nothing to me now, and I have a lightness of being and a peace of mind I’ve never known before.
How does all of this relate to the sign Cancer? As noted earlier, we’re said to be highly emotional, to be sentimental about our families, to have great memories, and to be hung up on the past. So, Cancerians’ emotionality and our rootedness in the past and family are all intricately connected, and one feeds into the other. At least that’s what’s making sense to me out of this whole experience. Does it make sense to you?
HEALING RESOURCE: The Bach Flower Remedy most recommended for Cancerians is Honeysuckle, the remedy for people who live too much in the past and so are homesick or nostalgia. The painting at the right, of an old-fashioned girl with a bouquet of honeysuckle is the absolute epitome of the type! Vibration Magazine, the foremost flower essence magazine on the internet, has two articles about Honeysuckle in their archives. One is Simon King’s May 16, 2009 post on their blog, “Living in the Past, the Future-Anything but Today!“ The other is Connie Barrett’s article, ”Stuck in the Past? Honeysuckle Helps You Embrace the Now,” at: http://www.floweressencemagazine.com/feb08/honeysuckle.html.
More Posts about the Moon on this Blog:
- Using the Daily Moon Sign to your Advantage
- How Strong is your Moon? Here’s the Score?
- Why Transits to the Birth Moon are so Challenging
- How Outer Planet Transits to the Moon Affect Family Life
- Why Cancer Isn’t a Popular Sign
- The Moon Signs and their Emotional Habits
- Outtake from a Moon-Pluto Life
Articles about Thought forms on Skywriter:
- Seriously Stuck? Blast Those Thought Forms!
- Thought Forms and the Brain
- The Ultraviolet Jackhammer-A Tool for Demolishing Negative Beliefs
- Legacy Thought Forms-Shake (off) what your Mama Gave You
- Positive Thought Forms–Can They Limit Us, too? (Guest Blogger Dr. Deborah Bier)
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Art credits: The two images in this post come from http://commons.wikimedia.org and are copyright free under their license. The vintage painting by William Wontner is a public domain image, originally featured at: http://goldenagepaintings.blogspot.com/2008/10/william-clarke-wontner-honeysuckle.html, which sounds like a good blog to visit if you’re nostalgic.