What is a profection year?
Last year I wrote about my 9th house year and what my experience with those themes felt like. If you are 8, 20, 32, 44, 56, 68, 80, or 92 years old– you might find validation for whatever you've been experiencing in that article. You can find it here.
That piece inspired me to continue the profection year series as I experience them. If you don't know, a profection year is an astrological technique that shows you the overarching themes one might be experiencing at a certain age. We always joke, for example, that years 19 and 23 are particularly rough and this makes sense! It is the 8th and 12th house years, associated with loss. It's always interesting to see the collective experiences that we have at particular ages and the support we find through each other's stories. It is comforting to know that some things are just a part of life.
A profection year chart looks something like this:
You can see that the profected house is in the innermost circle and the ages branch out from there. Depending on the traditional planetary ruler of the house that is affected, you will have a different undertone to your year. Last year, I was in my 9th house year ruled by the Moon as my time lord (since my 9th house is in Cancer as a Scorpio rising). The Moon falls into my 6th house natally which added a very specific layer of connection between the 9th and 6th house. I won't unpack it here as you can find it in the link above. My point is, it's important to look at your profection year as well as the sign and planet ruling to understand more about your personal experience.
My first 10th house experience:
The 10th house year happens at ages 9, 21, 33, 45, 57, 69, 81, and 93. The 10th house is the realm of authority figures, the parents, the government, politics, legacy, career, life path and direction, your outermost self and your public image. This year, my time lord is the Sun, as my 10th house cusp is ruled by Leo. My Sun sign falls into the 7th house in the Whole Sign House system which is the one that I recommend for this technique, but it never hurts to look at the Placidus placement for a more nuanced interpretation. My Placidus chart places my Sun in the 6th house and I do consider this as well.
Honestly? My 10th house year has been a lot more about my parents than I thought it would be, but I should've anticipated that. If we pair my personal transits with this, it makes perfect sense. Saturn has been in my 4th house of home and family for the majority of my 21st year.
It always helps to go back to the last time you had this profection year– when I was 9 years old, my (now, ex) step dad was in a lot of trouble at work and was fired. This really made sense with the 10th house themes. A parent of mine was in trouble with his own superiors at work and because of this, we moved back to our home state (Texas) so that he could find job opportunities as he had already exhausted every possible employer in New Mexico. We also have a lot of relatives in Texas from both my Mom and Step dad's side of the family, so I suppose it was convenient at the time with four young kids in tow.
I have noticed that the 10th house often brings big moves as it opposes the 4th house and rules over public status of all kinds, including housing status and the local government that you live under. Since I was a child at age 9, the context was very different. It wasn't my public image that was under a microscope, but I was still affected by my parent's public status and career.
Though, when we moved back to Texas, my outer public appearance began to change too. Instead of going by Kaitlyn I opted for Katie as this what my grandparents called me. It felt fitting for my new southern identity, I guess. I also experienced bullying for the first time when we moved back. The culture and status quo in New Mexico is very different from the Dallas standard. In New Mexico, we were all so free. Now, in the rural outskirts of Dallas, I was dealing with toxic beauty standards and the most literal stereotype of mean girl cheerleaders.
I wasn't recognized the same way as I had been, so I began dressing down. I didn't want to call attention to myself, so I got rid of my super cool knee high red boots (that someone said were ugly) and most of my girlier clothes. They weren't good enough for my peers, so I made myself boyish. If I was going to adopt a style, it wasn't going to be mediocre. I was either going to be the prettiest, girliest girl or the most rebellious tomboy. My brain works in extremes like that.
This is where my Taurus Sun time lord comes in. Taurus can represent clothing, socioeconomic status, superiority, tradition, values, and social hierarchy. I knew I didn't have a chance at becoming what these people wanted because I had different values, so I did the extreme opposite. It's poetic almost, just as much as it is kind of sad. Now that I'm truly reflecting, I'm realizing that this was a time where I didn't fit in. Knowing what I know now and seeing my Solar ruled 10th house? With the Sun in Taurus? Those girls were probably just jealous of my red boots.
This was the child version of the 10th house where everything is much smaller and simplified. As we get older and experience the same profection year every 12 years, we begin to understand what it's all really about.
My second 10th house experience:
Now, I've experienced my second 10th house profection year at age 21. There were quite a few similarities to my first one: When I turned 21, I was living in Chicago, which wasn't really working out for me. I loved the city, but I went through some extremely difficult moments and lessons. I was ready for a change after 3 years of the worst winters, but couldn't figure out what that would look like. Something about going through a massive break up the year before, social isolation, dealing with the aftermath of mild physical assault, struggling with money amidst a pandemic– it all really tires a person out. So, I was invited to come home and stay with my mom for a bit. I moved back to Texas just like I had at age 9.
One of my first thoughts when sitting down to write this article was about how much I wanted to reveal. I don't want to put my family on blast or to be disrespectful in any way, but I do want to honestly recount my experience. If I'm not being authentic... what is the point of being a writer? What is the point of astrology? The astrology shows things that no one wants to talk about anyway. To be ethical and respectful, I will speak in metaphors for the most part, but there is one event that must be told honestly if I want to capture the true essence of the themes this year presented to me.
The 10th house year is about feeling young. Not because you feel it in your body or in your spirit, but because you are in a room with people who make you feel like a little kid again. It doesn't matter that you are suddenly at eye level with your parents as you have grown taller, no amount of height can keep you from feeling small again. This can be positive in some ways, but it can hit in the worst of ways too, depending on the dominant emotion you felt as a child. It doesn't matter how much you know about the world, they will tell you that you know nothing. You are small and they are big. And at their big age, they still do not know accountability, how to be honest, how to apologize.
The second 10th house year is about not being seen for all that you have become. Once you enter that home, that city, that room– you have not aged a day. There are still lies, blame, and somehow, always an angry step father no matter who steps into that role. It doesn't matter how much you have learned since going away, they will bring up things from your childhood for leverage. It doesn't matter how far away you went because when you come back it is so much worse than you thought it was as a kid. You revert back into older coping mechanisms and you even begin to develop new ones.
I don't want to scare people who are still in this year or who are about to go into this year (especially when no two charts are the same), because even as difficult as this year was for me, this year is about validation.
It was helpful to see certain themes reinforced because it reveals an Official Truth. It declares who you can truly trust. It verifies the existence of things you only suspected before. By seeing the patterns repeat over and over, you can see where change is needed, where cords should sever, where you have been fooled into blind acceptance. This is because the 10th house year is the highest point of your chart. The absolute pinnacle. A pedestal.
The thing about a pedestal is that eventually, it operates as a spotlight. You begin to see cracks and imperfections. The burden of being a disappointment becomes so heavy that you will fall off. It is so freeing to fall off a pedestal. I didn't learn that until about a week ago. I think my 10th house year has shown me that it is easier to be hated than to be loved sometimes.
Now, because my 10th house is solar and ruled by my 7th house Sun, this year was about relationships. Everything is for me with a 7th house Sun, but especially this year. I learned about what kind of relationships are parallel and the ones that are vertical. I learned that I absolutely hate dating and I'd rather skip to the "I see God in your eyes" moment. I learned how to have a relationship with myself until I reach that moment. I learned about the kind of relationship I want to have with my body (Taurus), I don't want to nourish my body based on what it will look like, but rather what is energizing and healthy for it.
I learned about what it means to be seen. A lot of people can't see or hear you because their own perception and ingrained voices get in the way. Their own relationship with their body, their parents, themselves, it all gets in the way of their ability to see you (my 10th house opposes my 4th house Neptune). They project every part of themselves onto you until you are reenacting some ugly scene from 20 years before.
I learned that sometimes you don't even know what happened 20 years before and yet here you are, walking those same steps.
For example, this year I found out I had a brother that my biological father kept hidden from me, from all of us. Absolutely hilarious symbolism in thinking about the 10th house (the father), Leo (recognition, revealing), and opposite my 4th house Neptune (family secrets and projection).
The first night I met my brother in person, I joked about how my father worked just two doors down from the restaurant that we were sitting in. To my surprise, my brother, while three years younger, is just as bold as I am and suggested that we go pay him a visit. We giggled over our collective nervousness on the short walk over, hypothesizing his reaction to seeing me for the first time since I had graduated high school and to seeing my brother for the first time ever.
I had been trying to get our dad to call me all week since finding out about my brother, but he must have known that whatever I wanted to speak to him about, it wasn't good. Especially as I make a point not to talk to him. That being said, I was pretty angry that he was ignoring me the one time that I intentionally sought him out.
The hostess at the restaurant unknowingly put us right in his section. My dad noticed me as soon as I walked in. He came to take our order, I was seething anger and making a point to stare into his soul, hoping to invoke some well deserved shame. The conversation went like this:
Me: Hey, Dad. I cocked my head, drawing together the thick eyebrows I inherited from him. Something wrong with your phone?
Dad: Oh yeah, it's broken. he said it quickly, like the words wouldn't come out otherwise.
Me: Mmm. I nodded my head in disgust, lips tight because I could taste his lie.
This is my brother. I gestured to him sitting across from me.
Dad: Nice to meet you.
They shook hands.
Silence. I stared at him, sitting like a statue, waiting for him to say more, do more. He just stared back at me like a fish. Flopped around like one too, unable to stay still. Eventually, my body released, I shook my head. We placed our order.
If you really want to make an impact on someone, don't yell at them. Know that your lowered voice and short sentences are louder than they would be in a roar. My dad could be seen nervously fumbling around the restaurant and trying hard not to make direct eye contact, while my brother and I split a strawberry cheesecake and were eventually laughing and too busy in our own conversation to remember where we were and who was present.
Looking back on how few words were exchanged in this interaction is surprising to me because there was so much subtext. In my head it went more like: How dare you ostracize this boy, removing him from a sense of concrete identity, refusing to answer him when he reached out to you. How dare you spend time with me, inviting me to your wedding, sending me letters from prison, visiting me in the city where I lived just 30 minutes away from my brother who you never bothered to tell me about. How cowardly you have to be to not even acknowledge him. I didn't say any of that in the moment, but I like to think it was implied. He did get a pretty heated text from me afterwards. He never responded.
I found out right after that my mother had also shown up to his work, at 21 years old, in her 10th house profection year, pregnant with me, seething with anger, demanding to know what was wrong with his phone and where he had been.
A truly fucked up reenactment, right?
Though, I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. It was a public declaration and reclamation of this sibling relationship that I feel was stolen from us.
This is what the 10th house year is. Reenactment. Validation. Declaration. Being recognized and not being recognized. Feeling and understanding someone else's pain of being unrecognized. Maybe even a little bit of triumph when others are forced into undeniable recognition.
Beyond the messy family stuff, I saw my career and life path move forward in huge strides. I couldn't see that as it was happening, but looking back, it did happen. This was the year that I publicized my practice. I stopped worrying about what others would think of me for being psychic (though, I loathe that term), an astrologer, a tarot reader. I felt sick every single time I let myself be seen in this way, but that anxiety began to dissipate over time. I stopped focusing on a "typical" business model and focused on relationships.
People don't purchase readings from hermetics to find all of the answers if they're smart. They purchase a reading because they want to be seen. They want to feel validated in their experiences. They want someone else to look in and notice what they've been experiencing and to provide some solutions to the more difficult parts of those experiences. So, I stopped focusing on the money no matter what that would cost me.
I began studying because I wanted to understand people. I also enjoy it, but overall, I wanted a way to see through someone transparently. Removing all the layers until we get to the core of something. The 10th house may be about the public image, but there is always something beneath that. Whatever you find beneath is much more important than what is presented.
This year, I found what I wanted to be seen and recognized for. It's always nice when people see your skills, but it is even nicer when people see you through your work.
I want people to see evidence of me in how I see them. I want them to feel cared for in my sessions and truly understood through my chosen lens. It has been hard to continuously go back to that thesis. Sometimes I wake up and I'm like, "Why do I exist? What am I doing? Does this really matter? Am I truly being of service?"
But I can tell I'm on the right track because I see my clients growing with me. I hope that these relationships that I have built will be my legacy. I hope that the intentional care that I put into my client, familial, platonic, and even romantic relationships is what I am remembered for. It isn't about appearances or money or success– it is about mutual understanding. It is about holding people, wherever they may be, in their experiences. Providing wisdom and insight into those experiences and receiving even more of that back.
I have learned the value in keeping my circle, and my client base, small. Connection is beginning to look very different in this very different world that we are creating. A connection has to be more intentional to survive these days. Many of us no longer have relationships of convenience or of circumstance. We have to be extremely present to create something real and I think, I fail at this most days.
But I hope that my legacy is in trying when others won't or can't or don't have the capacity.
Conclusion and Advice
So, just like the first 10th house year at age 9, I still don't "fit in"
I tell my parents what I feel and think, even if they don't have the courage to be as authentic. Even through my fear of being yelled at, or reprimanded, or abandoned. I am not going to be the object of someone's projections. I see me. I won't be bullied by a parent's loudness or their silence. I understand now that hierarchy within a family doesn't matter if there is not respect going both ways.
Likewise, I don't have an occupation that is easy to explain. To most, it sounds like a waste of time. I recognize and validate my experiences in servitude, in childhood, in my relationships. This year is merely evidence for all that I have been through. This article, this website, it is too, public evidence of all of these things.
So, when you go through your 10th house year or as you are coming out of yours– validate yourself. The google definition of validation is "recognition or affirmation that a person or their feelings or opinions are worthwhile."
Even if your parents struggled in their own life, it does not eliminate the evidence or validity of your own struggle. Your experience is worthwhile even when others do not affirm this to you.
Even if your skills or art is going unrecognized, it does not eliminate its existence or worthiness. Even if you don't "fit in" with the typical career, style, or social groups– it does not mean that you are wrong in your declaration.
Every time you create art (or cast a chart, or pull a card, or play a chord, or write down a story), it is a declaration. Go forth from the 10th house year and treat every creation, every conversation, every interaction, as a declaration of who you are and who you want to be. Don't let whatever is traditional or typical to hold you back from a true declaration.
For me, this year has shown me how I want to be treated. I wasn't brought up in an environment that reflected back respectful treatment– so, I want to create it. I will create grace and reverence within my relationships going forward. As I write that sentence, I am realizing I still have a few people to pluck out of this little circle of mine to even begin to enforce that kind of rapport. Take this as my 10th house reclamation.
Happy Birthday to me (and to all of you Taurus babies out there)! Cheers to my impending 11th house year.
my 21st solar return chart: