Among the many possible objects, planets, and calculated points in astrology my favorite is Chiron–not because Chiron is a benefic force in the chart, but because the “Wounded Healer” reveals to us the deepest root of our psychological urges to transform and transmute our pain into a healing balm for others. The transits of Chiron around the chart of the nativity reveal how we can become the healer we are meant to be, but these transits also implore us to see the true source of our wounds.
The mythological story of Chiron is one of tragedy. Chiron was a centaur, sage, and the greatest healer on earth. However, when he was struck with poison arrows, Chiron was unable to heal his own wound. This story reveals the nature of Chiron in astrology, and it also illuminates where in our lives we are unable to heal ourselves.
In order to better understand Chiron, I’ve decided to share from my personal experiences with this energy. As you’ll see, the story that unfolds in your life, in respect to Chiron, is one of pain and suffering, but ultimately this archetype offers us the hope to bring reconciliation to the world around us. After reading about my own experiences with Chiron, perhaps you’ll also want to study your transits in order to better understand your own story.
First, let me explain that my natal Chiron is in Gemini in my 7th house of partnerships. The natal placement is key to understanding when and how events will unfold. To me, Chiron in the 7th house literally represents my parents’ troubled marriage. Their dysfunction and divorce when I was only three led to my deep wounding. This one event would trigger many subsequent activations of the wounding energy.
In the 7th house, Chiron represents the wound of rejection. All of Chiron’s placements are difficult, but I can say with all certainty that I understand what it feels like to be alone in life. My mind constantly turns to negative thoughts about others: “Will they leave me? Do they accept me? No, they are lying. They don’t really love me.”
I vividly remember my first Chiron aspect. Not because I was a student of astrology at the age of five, but because I can pinpoint exactly what the first sextile and square represent in the story of my life (Chiron in Leo and Chiron in Virgo). My first sister was born in February of 1993. My first sextile occurred in July of the same year, and the square followed in November of 1994 – August 1995. My mother and stepfather were married in July of 1992, and my mother was pregnant with my sister. The timing of transits are no coincidence. Sometime between those transits, the first manifestation of my wounding was revealed.
During that time my parents were embroiled in a nasty custody battle. My father had weekend visitation rights, and I would spend every other weekend with he and my grandparents. One weekend after my sister’s birth I remember my grandmother telling me, “They (my parents) have a new baby now, so they won’t love you anymore.” Isn’t it amazing how one sentence can stick with a person for their entire life?
Other than that one moment of selfishness, I have nothing but fond memories of my grandmother. However, that one manipulative and angry comment made an impression on my life that would lead to great suffering for years to come.
Shortly after the experience with my grandmother, I was at home with my mother and sister. My mother needed to shower, so she asked me to watch my sister. My sister, an infant, just wouldn’t stop crying. My grandmother’s words echoed in my young mind, they won’t love you anymore…
I walked toward my sister, filled with anger, jealousy, and hopelessness. Looking at her I thought, “She’s the problem.” At five years old I placed my hands around my sister’s neck, trying to gather the courage to squeeze her airway closed. She began to cry louder. I’ll forever be thankful for what happened next, even if it left a mark on my relationship with my family.
My mother walked in the room. I imagine that she was distraught to see her son with his hands around her newborn’s neck. This would begin a period of 13 years of physical, verbal, and emotional abuse at the hands of my stepfather. The wound deepened.
The second event that occurred during my first Chiron square was the death of my paternal grandfather. I didn’t understand the significance of this at first, but later I would learn of some dark happenings in my family between my grandfather, mother, and father that would torment my mind for years to come. Now that I think back on his death I realize that it was, perhaps, one of the most significant moments of my life–I just didn’t know it then. Due to the possibility that someone in my family may one day read this, I will not go into the details.
Following the square, I experienced my first Chiron trine in Libra. This aspect occurred in November of 1996, and my father committed suicide three weeks later. I wasn’t allowed to grieve my father’s death–no counseling, no visiting the cemetery, no talking about it. My mother hated him, and I’m not sure if she’s ever moved on from the deep emotions she held within. I remember asking my mother about my father’s suicide a year or two later. She replied, “One day I’ll get a shotgun and a head of lettuce and show you what it was like.” No other explanation necessary.
When Chiron crossed my Sagittarius ascendant, my mother and stepfather decided that I should be adopted and have my name changed. This also occurred around the time of my Chiron opposition. From the wound of the 7th house the energy was channeled into my very identity. I wasn’t given a choice in the matter. I was only 12 years old, and the judge told me that it didn’t matter what I thought, and so I was adopted and my surname was changed to that of my stepfather’s name–in effect, erasing the memory of my father for years to come.
The time period of my second Chiron trine (Chiron in Aquarius) manifested in two painful events. The first was my short-lived first relationship, my first love. When I met Christopher Chiron was sextile my ascendant and approaching the trine. Our romantic relationship only lasted three months, but our lives would be entwined for years to come. At the trine, four days after my 21st birthday, I was depressed, emotional, and full of angst.
On the morning of the 19th, Christopher’s birthday, I got up early for work. After work I went to a weekly house party and had about three glasses of wine. Then, I was tired and decided to drive home. On the way home–for reasons I can’t recall–I set the cruise control on my grandmother’s truck (my vehicle was in the shop at the time). About five miles from my grandmother’s house I fell asleep. The next thing I remember is coming to, the vehicle destroyed, and realizing just what had happened.
I crawled from the wreckage, terrified, but thankful to be alive. The only part of the vehicle that remained intact was the driver’s side of the vehicle. Everything else was in ruin. The people across the street called the police. I went up to the house, visibly shaken, and covered in blood. The state trooper came and I was arrested. I remember crying and praying–looking back I’m most thankful that I didn’t kill anyone else in my momentary act of foolishness. Thankfully, my blood alcohol content was low enough that I didn’t suffer long term consequences, but this incident changed my life. If this hadn’t occurred I would not have been jarred out of my suicidal depression. The wreck made me realize just how much I did want to live. Later that year I moved away from my home town.
By now, I can see obvious themes in Chiron’s movement through my chart of nativity. As Chiron squared my ascendant, I lost the one person who had always been there for me throughout my life: my grandmother. This aspect occurred 19 years, almost to the day, of my first Chiron square. Chiron’s transits have symbolized loss throughout my life, which confirms the message of Chiron in my 7th house: being alone in the world.
Last year I experienced my second Chiron square (and Chiron conjunct my north node and sun in Pisces), right as I was graduating college. I got a job right afterward working for a web development company as a writer. What I didn’t know was that the job I thought I would love would turn out to trigger the preceding Chiron transits to my natal Chiron and ascendant. I broke down. It was as if every single moment of trauma came back up, and I am certain that I almost lost my mind. I began waking up in the middle of the night, sweating and shaking. I began having chest pain and heart palpitations.
In the first week of August 2016 I decided to investigate my father. He was adopted, so I wanted to see if I could find any information about his past. I didn’t discover anything significant, but the few details I did uncover were meaningful: his address, phone number, and other small, yet personal details. A week later a good friend of mine’s father committed suicide: in the same area my father had taken his life 20 years prior. I went to the funeral, and afterwards I went out to my late grandmother’s house. I walked out to the fence, looked out at the pasture where cows once grazed, and I completely and totally broke down. At that moment I felt the truth of the deep pain I had carried with me for years. I felt completely and totally alone in the world.
The very next week one of my closest friends attempted suicide. My world unravelled. The pain, darkness, and deep woundings I experienced all throughout life bubbled to the surface. The difference this time was that I had quit drinking (mostly) earlier in the year. Before that I drank heavily and frequently: alcohol was my escape. Now that I was regularly sober I had a choice. I could face the painful events of the past and allow Chiron to represent healing in my life, or I could turn back to the bottle. Thankfully I chose the former, and I think that many of the incredibly difficult situations I experienced in life have been exposed–not to further harm me–in order for healing to begin.
I do not know what the next Chiron aspects will entail (or if I’ve experienced everything involved in the current transit). What I do know is that these transits are culminating in a deeper, more meaningful (albeit painful) healing experience. From my loneliness and grief I have been given an opportunity to extend powerful and radical acceptance to others. From my greatest wound healing flows, and I have chosen, finally, to view my experiences as opportunities to become the healer I was meant to be.
May I become the love I always needed, and may I respond to the events of life from a place of compassion instead of pain. This is what Chiron has meant to me over the years. Take a look at your personal transits, because I guarantee that you’ll discover a familiar story that the Wounded Healer has woven throughout your life. May all of your wounds become a source of healing for others in this broken, painful world. We may not be able to heal our own wounds, but if each of us learn to heal others in the way that we need healing, then eventually someone will heal us, too. Let the healing flow.