“Waisted” Wishes

I am a self-proclaimed Astrological Agnostic.  I am not certain if that is a bona fide category in the DSMM (Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Metaphysics) or if I just made up the term.  Either way there is something elegant about the fact that the word agnostic is tidily tucked away inside the word diagnostic.  That […]

I am a self-proclaimed Astrological Agnostic.  I am not certain if that is a bona fide category in the DSMM (Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Metaphysics) or if I just made up the term.  Either way there is something elegant about the fact that the word agnostic is tidily tucked away inside the word diagnostic.  That is just cool.

So how do I define an Astrological Agnostic?

  • Someone who is skeptical about Astrologers’ claims that Astrology is an efficacious system of categorizing personalities and predicting possible events in the future.
  • Someone who needs statistical proof to eradicate their skepticism about these claims.
  •  Someone who wouldn’t be particularly surprised to find that the claims were legitimate.
  • Someone who doesn’t judge others who do believe the claims are legitimate.

My cousin, Ralfee Finn writes a very well known astrology column called the Aquarium Age.  (No that is not a typo, it really is Aquarium not Aquarius) and is sought after far and wide for charts and readings.  I find her columns filled with words of wisdom and enjoy reading them although being the A.A. that I am, I tend to ignore the astrological references.  I suppose there is a possibility that if Ralfee looked at my chart she would find that the configuration of my planets at the time of my birth is classic for someone who is an Astrological Agnostic.

We could set up a study and interview all of the people who have their suns in Sagittarius with Capricorn Rising and Moons in Aries, etc. and ask them to describe their opinion of the validity of astrological claims.  We could then aggregate and analyze the data, accounting for intervening variables and making sure we have a good control group.  Then we may find that there is a statistically significant outcome of Astrological Agnostic responses e.g.  “Well, if someone provided me with proof….etc.” associated with those birth charts.  Those may be data worth noting.

But I also occasionally wonder about the month of December.

In a previous blog, It’s A Gift, I wrote about the month of December as a challenging month for people who tend to suffer from the Holiday Blues.  What I didn’t mention was December is also the month filled with the birthdays of most of my friends.  With over a dozen births to celebrate, could there be any astrological meaning to this? I am not talking about my family’s birthdays. I am talking about close friends I have chosen all of whom have birthdays in the same month. Is there a reason why I am drawn to people who are considered Sagittarians?

I have no idea.  I wasn’t planning on talking about astrology at all, so let’s put the zodiac aside, and talk about birthday wishes.

Having just celebrated hug-fuls of birthdays with my December friends, I found myself noticing the moment of wishful blowing. Men and women alike seem to take this traditional candle blowing-wish making moment very seriously.  I honestly cannot think of a single person who had a nonchalant or laissez faire candle blowing approach.  Each person paused, closed their eyes, and solemnly reopened them, inhaled and then exhaled with the intensity of a dragon.  I don’t know if making a birthday wish before blowing out the candles is an international cultural tradition and I’d be curious to hear from my readers who were not born in America about that.

But here are some observations.

Even the most germ-phobic people do not seem to care about the germs and spittle that are being spread over the cake in the process.

The people waiting for the cake to be served, without any authority figure telling them to be quiet, take on a supportive silent stance in the wish-making pre-candle blowing moment. 

The only exception to this is if someone is documenting this momentous moment with a photo and asks the birthday boy/girl to wait a moment so they can prepare the shot.

And of course the ultimate rule,


This rule is so ingrained in all of us that no one even asks you what you wished for.  Well I am here to tell the world (okay, that’s a bit grandiose) I am here to tell my wonderful readers that not saying your wish out loud has NOTHING to do with a wish coming true.  If that were the case I would not have wished the same wish year after year after year.  It would have come true and then I would have had the chance to create a new wish each subsequent year.  But somehow during the 364 days that elapse between opportunities to manifest anything my birthday heart desired, I would forget that it hadn’t worked the year before.

Each year I would remind myself not to waste the wish, not to blow it on something superficial and unimportant. After all it would be another year before I had this much power in my corner.  And yet in the final moment…the game-making play…the moment of truth…the birthday genie beckoning, without exception, I would wish…

to be thin.

Exhale.  Done. No take-backs.

Wishing to be thin trumped:

  • World Peace
  •  Unlimited wealth
  • Happy healthy life
  • Happy healthy kid
  • Successful career
  • Cure for AIDS
  • A new car

I was indeed a superficial horrible person and on top of that I was totally inconsistent.  After all isn’t it the ultimate Agnostic Hypocrisy?  How could I fervently continue to believe in the magic of birthday wishes despite the preponderance of proof that they did not come true and still be an Astrological Agnostic?

This pattern continued for decades, until two years ago.  First of all, I gave myself permission to be inconsistent after all isn’t that what being open minded is sometimes about?  I gave myself permission to love my body as it is and stopped wishing it would be what it wasn’t.  Instead, I wished that my son would get into the college of his choice.  He did.  Last year I wished that a close friend of mine would make it through her 5th year being cancer free.  She did!

This is a good trend; and no, I don’t really believe my wish had anything to do with the outcomes of the two examples I just gave you.  After all correlation is NOT causation.  But for some inexplicable reason I feel a twinge of sadness when I think back on all of my birthday wishes wasted.  For what? To be thinner waisted?  What a waste.

As I am writing this, It has been 360 days since my last birthday and when I go to blow out the candles on my cake with my loved ones around me I will have another chance to tap into the magic of the birthday wish.  And while I can’t tell you what I will wish for, I bet all of you know what I will NOT wish for!

What’s your sign?  ;-)

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