"It is strange how we hold on to the pieces of the past while we wait for our futures."
-- Ally Condie
"The Greek word for 'return' is 'nostos'. 'Algos' means 'suffering'. So nostalgia is the suffering caused by an unappeased yearning to return."
-- Milan Kundera
When the planet of communication hits the brakes from June 26 through July 20, all mental activities and outer movement will slow way down. This particular Mercury Retrograde is in the sensitive and emotional waters of Cancer. Mercury Retrogrades have a tendency to bring a retrospective energy of wanting to reconnect with people or places from our past, and while in the nostalgic sign of Cancer, the effect of clinging to the past is doubled.
As our mental energy turns inward for the next several weeks, we could easily find our minds becoming clouded with memories or feelings from the past. If there is someone or something we haven’t totally gotten over, this is a time when those imprints are back up for us to deal with, and either rekindle or release. Although it can be immensely helpful to recover old ground and heal unfinished emotional business, there's the danger of getting stuck and glamorizing what once was. Often people and situations are in the past for a reason. They did not work out and there was probably a very important reason we had to let go and move on.
It's human nature to want to relive both the pleasure and pain of the past, but it is impossible to recreate something that had its time and place. When we go back to a restaurant, city or relationship expecting to rekindle the old spark or relive the experience, we discover that the magic only existed at the very specific time.
Cancer rules memories and feelings, so it might be more useful to work on the inner self to heal old attachments and hurts rather than trying to repeat them externally. The latter option often leads to grave disappointment and disillusionment. Cancer also rules mother and family issues, so some archaic issues could easily resurface with mother figures or other key family members under this influence. It's an excellent time to be good mothers to ourselves and pay attention to our moods and sensitivities before they have a chance to lash out reactively.
As with all Mercury Retrogrades, communication and travel plans are bound to become messy and disjointed, so we must always allow for back-up plans and extra time. Our gut instinct is very strong during this time, so trust your first response to a situation. Finally, Mercury Retrograde in Cancer says that it's fine to revisit the past -- just don’t get stuck there.