Home > NN. Occasions > Janus and Gemini: Looking Both Ways

Janus and Gemini: Looking Both Ways


RT was born at a somewhat problematic time: pretty much half-way through the year. This straight-down-the-middle timing is reflected in his zodiac sign: Gemini, the twins, and is reminiscent of another month’s tutelary deity, Janus of January. Yes, RT has always been of two minds (about most things).

Looking both ways has its advantages (as when crossing the road) and, as is well known, can lead to a certain amount of procrastination. While honoring his split impulses, RT is going to seize the day and look boldly backward and forward, offering his reflections half-way through his birth-year cycle.


Looking Backwards. Ignoring the advice to never look back, RT has been listening to a good deal of 80s music on YouTube. This is a new habit and is accompanied by more than a little bittersweet nostalgia. Everyone is older than they were when “Heartbreak Beat” and “Sailing” were topping the charts, and a few people that RT knew in those days are now dead, including his father, who passed away on President’s Day 1997, a week shy of his 70th birthday. He (and his generation) was remarkable, and part of the problem that my generational cohort has faced is living up to the struggles and successes of America in the mid-20th century. I think we drifted for a long time under the spell of our parents’ (and older siblings’) achievements. Then things got clearer. We Americans live in a country that was designed to be a work-in-progress: many of the guarantees and procedures were blueprints, promises, that we the citizenry were meant to achieve. Thank Heavens for that; we live in such an intensely practical culture (things must work!) that we need the nagging voice of the founders to remind us of our ideals and unfulfilled potential. No, those voices say, it’s not OK when people die on the ER floor because they don’t have health insurance, it’s not OK when 20 kids get killed in elementary school because a young man went crazy. We’ve taken steps to address some of these issues; more are needed.

What applies to the whole often applies to the part. RT, at 52, has a long list of projects and resolutions that remain unfulfilled or unfinished. This past year he made good progress on some of his writing projects, other areas need more attention. That’s the thing about problems–if you ignore them, they just get worse.


Looking Forwards. In regards to the future, this is what people need: time and momentum. They need time to process what has happened to them, to catch up with themselves, and to plan.

By catching up with ourselves I mean: just how busy was your 2012? Placing the events of life and our responses to them in context takes time; building up strength takes time; feeling the pain takes time. Honesty is a discipline: how well are we practicing it?

By momentum I mean: is your life heading up or down? Are you losing or gaining ground? What will it take to put a floor under your situation or keeping moving in the right direction? It can take weeks or longer to answer these questions. The good news is, when you deal with them, you will feel better almost immediately. Don’t just plan: pick out the one thing you must do now and do it. Leave yourself open to the consequences of that action as it unfolds. If your choice doesn’t work, do something else.


Now it’s time for the champagne and fireworks…may everyone have a wonderful 2013!!!     RT


Image: Janus, WikiCmns, Public Domain.


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