Is Saturn Retrograde Real? This Planetary Movement Could Affect Your Summer Plans
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With the cosmic onslaught of planets turning retrograde, April has been quite an eventful month. Mercury may hog the limelight, but four additional planets have been appearing to move backwards in the night's sky, too (which is overkill, if you ask me). For those wondering if Saturn retrograde is real and what it means, the answer is, sadly, yes: All planets have periods of retrograde motion, and we will be experiencing Saturn's unique pull all throughout the summer. As astrology buffs already know, when this large planet shifts, it's a good idea to buckle up for a bumpy ride.

Saturn's retrograde officially began on April 6 and will continue until Aug. 25, 2017, for a total of nearly five months before the planet stations direct once again. Saturn is the sixth planet from the Sun and its orbit of our bright star is significantly slower than Earth's — 30 times slower, in fact. This means that each year, Saturn turns retrograde at a different point in time. While Mercury's disruptive retrograde tends to get the focus, its reign will soon be over (on May 3) — but that doesn't mean you should push ahead on projects, launch new endeavors, or go about business as usual, because crafty Saturn will come into play.

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Retrograde is often a time of reflection and reassessment, a break from the grind to examine our past choices in order to successfully move forward. Saturn's period of retrograde will not bring the same quiet, meditative quality that you experience with other planets; instead, expect an active phase of learning that may even be physically tiring. Saturn retrograde will take you on what AstrologyKing.com describes as a "karmic rollercoaster ride," complete with breathtaking highs and dark lows. Karmic energy is expected to balance out over this time, and past good deeds will be rewarded just as those who have misbehaved will learn valuable lessons. At the start of Saturn's retrograde, the planet was squared with Venus, meaning that you may have hit a rough patch in your relationship or finances. Luckily, after April has passed, planetary alignment is more favorable, though you can expect to get another crash course in responsibility over this time no matter how good you already are at adulting. (I know, I know; not what you wanted to hear at the start of summer concert season).

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If you have a rough time during the months Saturn is retrograde, take heart, as there will be a beautiful rainbow at the end of the storm. "Saturn direct heals the pain and sets up an optimistic future," notes AstrologyKing. "Karmic balance is found as debts are repaid. Everyone can move on toward emotional happiness and successful relationships." After five months of karmic upheaval and astrological flux, boy, do we deserve a little peace and quiet!