Who is Mercury and What’s Retrograde?

Before I get into my own marvelous Mercury Retrograde, let’s go over who Mercury was and what a retrograde is in astrology. Mercury was the messenger of the gods in mythology. He was fast and his job was to deliver news and facilitate transit. Therefore he is associated with communication and information as well as trade and commerce, wether goods or people. From this he is also associated with forms of ground transportation (cars, trucks, bikes) and traveling in general. He is depicted with wings on his feet, or sometimes on his helmet, especially as his Greek equivalent, Hermes. Mercury has the shortest orbit around the Sun, completing a full cycle in only 88 days. Thus he is the ‘fastest’ of all the planets.


All planets have elliptical trajectories around the Sun, but shape of the ellipse and the speeds planets travel vary. When a planet gets close to Earth, is seems to move backward, thus creating the retrograde. Even ancients astrologers could see that the planets that were visible to the eye, would rise less and less high in the sky at certain times. Telescope or no, this is obviously an illusion, as no planet grinds to a halt and begins backing up. Somehow, if that ever did happen, I think we could conclude that the end of time had come. All planets have retrograde cycles.

Putting It Together

So a Mercury retrograde mean mix ups in communications, misinformation, misunderstandings. It’s also a time to avoid purchases of anything electronic and tech related. If you have to buy a cell phone, for example, during a Mercury retrograde, read and re-read everything. Check the details. Same for travel and trade, two other areas hampered by the Mercury Retrograde. Avoid signing contracts if possible.

It is a poor time to initiate something but a great time to finish up old business, or conclude a project. If something has been dragging in that i-haven’t-gotten-around-to-it kind of way, this is the time to finish it.

Because there is a going backwards energy, and depending on where in your chart Mercury is up to tricks (because Mercury is the trickster of the zodiac and can indicate thievery), people, situations, events from the past can come back around. Former lovers, an opportunity you had passed up, an inspiration you never moved on. It’s ok to start them here, because they aren’t new. They are ‘old business’ requiring a conclusion. Sometimes it’s the universe’s way of making us take a second look.

The final thing to keep in mind is that while Mercury Retrograde is annoying and causes delays, it is rarely disastrous or extremely costly. Just darn annoying, as you will see.

My Mercury Retrograde Saga

Mercury Retrograde hit hard this time. I’m usually careful and most retrogrades have their share of quirky errors, but hardly very concerning. This time was different.

There was a first goofy event where I ordered address digits online. I should have waited but it was one of those cases where I needed them right away. There’s a repeat in my address for a total of 4 digits. Let’s say 2477. I received the order: two digits were correct, the repeats were wrong: 2 fives rather than the 2 sevens. Second order: a 7 and a 0. Like really? This isn’t rocket science, more like Sesame Street.

It Gets Worse

Then things got worse. I forgot my phone (communication, technology) on an extended week-end away (travel, transportation). When I noticed we were already two hours into the return trip. Aggravating? Yes, definitely. A total disaster? No. The phone isn’t lost. But my means of communication is definitely hampered. That’s Mercury Retrograde.

I managed to get another SIM card and shared with my husband which was doable but, again, annoying. At the same time an old work friend, whom I hadn’t seen in ages and had only spoken to a few times over the last few years, called me up (Mercury retrograde brings back people from the past). She had had enough of her department and wanted to transfer to mine. She could come for a try out, would I show her the ropes? Sure no problem, I said. We texted back and forth. But then I was out of touch with no phone again. It was the day I got the SIM card and tried to find a cheap used phone. I explained why I hadn’t responded to her texts. No worries, she said, I have two old iPhones sitting in a drawer. I’ll lend you one.

So I have now patched up my cell phone problem while waiting for my real phone. It isn’t perfect but it’s fine considering all that could have gone wrong. I still have a phone and the cost to temporarily replace it is minimal. All this will be over March 15th. Let me know your retrograde snafus.

Photo by Matthew Brodeur on Unsplash


I’ve restarted (so retrograde!) doing astrology readings and have a variety of formats and prices available. It’s all here on my Astrology Page.

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