Throughout our lifetimes, we all experience certain united experiences. For those of us in the United States of America, we often go to an elementary school, head off to high school, reach 16 and get our driver’s license, until we’re 18 and can vote, with 21 allowing us to legally drink alcohol.
Near that point in time, the world tells us that we are adults and can forge our own paths; wherever we go, we’re accountable for our actions, and life will react to us accordingly. That level of responsibility is something that we understand as we take on more bills, obligations, jobs, relationships and, of course, taxes.
But the stars above us judge us differently and do not see our journey to adulthood in quite the same beats. Saturn, the planet of maturity and life lessons, is the one who is life’s hardest teacher, forcing us to grow up and face reality.
While he gives us work to attend to each year while he travels around the sun, our Great Taskmaster completes his first journey through every area of our lives roughly by 28½ years. That is when someone faces the karma of all of those life lessons in full, as Saturn forces them to leave behind childhood and evolve into adulthood. This period, from the very late 20s until the early 30s, is when the universe declares you are, in fact, an adult — as opposed to when you’re 18.
Here are some things you should know about your Saturn return!
When is your Saturn return?
All people go through their Saturn return when they are roughly around the ages of 27 to 31. It happens again when someone is in their mid to late 50s. If someone is lucky enough to make it to their third one, this will take place near their late 80s.
Is your Saturn return bad?
Saturn is the planet of life lessons, karma, challenges, restrictions and hardship. Saturn is known to be a more difficult planet and teaches us what we need through pain, hard work, persistence and resilience. The first years prior to the Saturn return give the most grueling lessons. If someone steps up to face reality and learn what they need, the second time they experience Saturn in those houses will not be as difficult. However, if the person ignored the lessons and tried to run away from them, the second time Saturn moves through that sector will be just as hard.
As a planet, Saturn is not trying to hurt you. All forces in our universe are in balance and serve the purpose to help us grow and evolve. Saturn shows his care by helping you grow stronger.
The good about a Saturn return
There are so many benefits to the Saturn return that I do not know if I can list them all. While we are experiencing it, life will surely feel heavier, but when you reflect back on it, you will feel brighter and happier than ever. You will be grateful for that period because it was like you were being forged by fire into steel.
Karma is a key aspect of the Saturn return because it makes you own up to the world regarding who you are at your core. If you have treated people well, lived in harmony with your body, spirit and mind, and chosen to take responsibility for your actions and path, you will often find that the Saturn return is tremendously rewarding. Major achievements, promotions, recognitions, new business initiatives or inspired career directions may take place during this time. Some people will find that they’re happy with their professional lives and reap that harvest, while others will realize they’re unfulfilled by their occupation and decide to move in a more fulfilling direction.
On a personal level, many people may start a significant long-term relationship, get engaged, become married, have a baby or buy a house. Some may decide it’s time to go back to school or pursue a vibrant, new life direction. While some of these realizations may have come from a rude awakening from the universe, you respect the message and make an informed decision to pivot your path. In a sense, you are like a tree and setting down roots that will grow for the coming 33-year period.
The challenges of a Saturn return
While all of that sounds great and very uplifting, the Saturn return is often a period where one feels as if their entire life is under a dark cloud. That is because Saturn’s energy is cold, icy and dark — think of a bitter winter night howling with sleet and you are standing out there, naked and alone. Sometimes one feels as if they are in the dark night of the soul — and it’s true because you are. The Saturn return exists to humble you and to teach you the value of everything in your life — everything you have built thus far. While it can bring extremely difficult passages of time, once one learns the lesson, it is as if someone has switched on the light — and that someone is you.
Saturn teaches us that we must surrender control and respect authority. That is why many people go through legal troubles at this time or have situations from the past return to strike them down. Enemies and competitors may do everything to rise above you. Authority figures and bosses may seem especially cold and cruel. Conflicts with partners may occur and could result in separation or divorce. Secrets and scandals can emerge that you may have previously tried to keep hidden. Health problems and mental breakdowns can erupt.
The key is to be resilient and resourceful — even though your energy and strength will be weakened. The harder you work now, the further you will go in the 30 years to come. One must recognize that it is crucial to forget one’s ego and swallow their pride — because the universe does not care how great you think you are. True greatness is created by one’s actions. Another key theme that causes people to wake up near these periods is that they suddenly realize mortality is real. You will not live forever and you will notice significant changes to your body, mind and spirit. The patterns you repeat and how you treat yourself are indicative of how your life will proceed. If you respect your body like a temple, you will feel healthier and more radiant. If you abuse your body — or anyone or anything, really — it will be taken from you.
Do other planets also return?
Yes! In fact, all planets return and start new patterns and beginnings when they do. The rate at which they each go through a return depends on how long it takes for the planet to go around the sun. Some planets do it every year — Mercury and Venus. Others, like Pluto, will never experience a return in a person’s lifetime.
One last note to make is that Saturn has other important cycles, too — like the Saturn square (around every seven or so years) and a Saturn opposition — which takes place about every 14 years. These periods often bring challenges as well and will carry important lessons that are specifically revisited during the Saturn rReturn.
Kyle Thomas is a globally recognized pop culture astrologer who has been featured in Cosmopolitan Magazine, ABC Television, Hulu, Bustle, Elite Daily, House Beautiful, Marie Claire, YahooNews, MSN and more. He is known for his cosmic guidance for celebrities, business executives and prominent influencers. His work harnesses the power of the stars in regards to entertainment lifestyle and trends affecting people worldwide. For more information, visit KyleThomasAstrology.com.