Is Mercury Retrograde Actually Real? I Compared My Experience to My Horoscope in Order to Find Out

Is Mercury Retrograde Actually Real? I Compared My Experience to My Horoscope in Order to Find Out
Photo: Image: Adobe. Design: Sasha Purdy / StyleCaster

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I’ve survived many Mercury retrogrades in my twenty-nine years on Earth, but certain Mercury retrogrades *really* take your life for a spin. While many devoted astrology enthusiasts are fierce in their belief in astrology, many of us are doubtful that it’s really real. But as soon as they learn about it, strange incidents always start to add up. It’s enough to make you wonder—is Mercury retrograde actually real? Or has this astrological phenomenon been blown completely out of proportion?

There was only one way I was going to find out—by comparing the story of my actual Mercury retrograde experience with what my Mercury retrograde horoscope predicted for zodiac sign. If my own story lines up with what my zodiac sign is supposed to experience, then it will confirm my long-held suspicion that astrology is always on point. 

This particular retrograde cycle started on September 9, 2022, beginning its backwards journey at 8 degrees Libra, the zodiac sign of harmony, friendship and romance. It also came to an end on October 2 at 24 degrees Virgo, a zodiac sign that loves organizing and planning. Mercury itself is the planet of technology, communication, brainpower and travel. When retrograde, all mental processes are famous for going completely haywire. Missed connections, missed appointments and the reappearances of long-lost people from the past are likely. I don’t know about you, but I’ve definitely felt the shakeups in my personal life throughout this Mercury retrograde cycle.

It’s important to get through this period by taking it slow, double checking any contracts or conversations you have and maintaining flexibility. Taking things in stride is key! Reflecting, realizing and re-assessing is the name of the game. Although that’s easier said than done, here’s how I managed to fare during my Mercury retrograde experience:

Is Mercury Retrograde Real?

STYLECASTER | Mercury Retrograde Zodiac Signs Horoscope

Image: Adobe. Design: Sasha Purdy / StyleCaster

September 9, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

Mercury retrograde begins, stationing in 8 degrees Libra (ruling harmony, friendship, romance), which means major misunderstandings in relationships are ashore. 8 degrees is the Scorpio degree, which layers on intensity and passion.

What Actually Happened

I had a stressful last week of August dealing with some majorly emotionally charged moments. My boyfriend flew back to New York after we spent weeks together, so my separation anxiety for the first few days was kicking in. Meanwhile, I had my inner child triggered by my mom in San Francisco, which led me to drive back down to Los Angeles two days earlier than intended from my parent’s house. I also ended up ditching a wedding I wasn’t really supposed to be at anymore (long story) at the last minute, since I was anxious and crying about it for a week straight. Protect your energy!

Meanwhile, my boyfriend was going through an extremely exhausting week at work and had little energy to communicate or even eat! Luckily, I dissolved my own selfish thoughts and ordered him a surprise dinner, which aided in assuaging any temporary hard feelings.

September 10, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

The Full Harvest Moon in Pisces, a raw and spiritual sign and the last one of the zodiac, arrives while in Virgo season. There’s an air of finality to events, while the stars call for you to find a balance between the logical and dreamy parts of yourself.

What Actually Happened

I’m rediscovering my rituals again with all my solo time in LA, while learning to integrate in the fun. My friends and I spontaneously decided to go to see Lady Gaga last minute on the 10th at Dodger Stadium and we had the time of my life singing and dancing along. Then, when the 11th rolled around, I made sure to squeeze in an extra soft and cozy self-care Sunday, complete with long hot girl walks, hydration, Pilates and rest. It was the first Sunday truly alone I had in almost two months! I’m moving away from the stressors earlier in the week and declaring myself anchored to my routines.

September 18, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

Mercury retrograde engages in a standoff with loudmouth Jupiter in Aries, which can rehash old issues and talk about the elephant in the room.

What Actually Happened

Talk about rehashing old issues! While I’m currently in Los Angeles minding my business, my boyfriend goes to a production studio opening with a mutual friend in Manhattan on the 15th. While they were leaving, this “creepy and weird guy” (to quote my boyfriend) was hitting on one of the females in the group, so my gracious partner said hello to the other man before grabbing the girl back to their original crew. Afterwards at a bar, everyone agreed on how strange the guy was… which turned out to be my toxic ex-boyfriend. 

Having my current lovely boo meet my ex while I’m on the other side of the country is not something I would have anticipated, but looks like Mercury is testing my limits to see how I handle my rough past colliding with my present. Luckily, my boyfriend (despite feeling icky) was able to communicate this incident to me, and I ended up loving him even more than I did in the first place.

Oh and how could I forget? After a weekend of light fun and havoc for a friend’s birthday in Las Vegas, my Instagram gets hacked the morning of the 19th as we were checking out of the Venetian. If you ever want all the distasteful people in your past that you forgot about to reach out and ask if it’s really you asking for one hundred dollars over DMs… well, get your Instagram compromised by a bad scammer. Luckily, StyleCaster helped me secure my account back again within 24 hours.

September 22, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

Fall equinox is here in Libra season. Libra is all about harmony, friendship, and romance as it’s ruled by Venus, so it’s time to romanticize your life in autumn.

What Actually Happened

Yay fall, although it’s hard to get in the mindset while it’s still a blistering 90+ degrees in SoCal. I had an extremely insightful therapy session, diving into my fear of being needy, my goals of solidifying daily routines, and honing in on my communication skills on the 21st. I ended up sharing and discussing all that I learned with my boyfriend, who was happy to listen through it all and respond lovingly to any concerns I had for myself and for each other. Of course, this conversation happened all while I lit my apartment with pumpkin scented candles.

STYLECASTER | Mercury Retrograde May 2022

Image: Adobe. Design: Sasha Purdy / StyleCaster

September 23, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

Mercury re-enters Virgo and exits Libra. Virgo is an earth sign that tends to overanalyze and strategize for control. You can feel out unregulated at this moment, but it’s key to remember to be versatile and adapt.

What Actually Happened

One of my close friends from New York that I met at my first real adult job now lives in San Diego, but she’s planning to move back to New York soon again, so she came to visit and stay with me in Los Angeles. We had a heartwarming and low-key weekend together catching up over yummy meals, bubbly beverages and trashy television.

September 25, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

The new moon in Libra is here! Turn over a new leaf with someone important to you and to get on the same page.

What Actually Happened

I strive for Sundays without any plans, so after my friend left to drive back to San Diego in the morning, I took the whole day to saunter through any personal errands at a snail’s pace. It feels luxurious to be able to get your to-do’s out of the way without any rushing. My boyfriend and I also had a catchup FaceTime, where we gossiped over any salacious tea we heard about. Turns out past noxious ghosts and hookups keep popping up for both of our friend groups, which guides us to appreciate each other even more amidst all the surrounding drama.

September 26, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

Mercury retrograde joins forces with Venus in Virgo, which is an opportunity to heal rifts, reconnect with old friends and pursue creative projects.

What Actually Happened

I had a lovely day working from home with a semi-new female friend who is a badass business woman in her own right running a nonprofit and a management company for artists. I also met one of the female artists she represents who was visiting from New York. We had lovely conversations on our navigating career paths, dealing with adult friendships, and connecting on artistic mutual interests. 

October 2, 2022

What My Horoscope Predicts

Mercury stations direct in Virgo at 24 degrees, which provides you with the promise of a new beginning. 24 degrees is the Pisces degree, which is associated with empathy and forgiveness. Meanwhile, Virgo loves practical plans and concrete tools. Love attracts more love, so your love life will heat up.

What Actually Happened

At the moment of me writing this article, we’re still in late September. I can tell you based on my plans for October 2 and onwards that my best friend, who I’ve known since middle school, is visiting me in Los Angeles this weekend. I haven’t seen her since May and we have some discussions on her dating and personal life in the pipeline, I’m sure of it. Between the two of us, we have quite a few places in the city to hit up and check out. 

Then, on October 7, I’m flying back to New York for about a month to reunite with my boyfriend! I suppose love really does attract more love and my romantic life will once again heat up while we are in the same city again.

STYLECASTER | Mercury Retrograde Dates 2022

Adobe. Design: Cierra Miller/STYLECASTER.

What’s The Verdict?

Although Mercury retrograde’s nefarious reputation can appear frightening on the surface, it’s more than possible to reach the other side feeling better than before. Think of Mercury retrograde as a mandated pause on any huge life decisions. It’s a great time to re-evaluate aspects of your lifestyle and revamp what isn’t serving you any longer. After all, time takes time! Rushing through everything can only make your process that much sloppier. It’s shocking how real this Mercury retrograde felt and how much it truly impacted my life this time around. However, in order to get through a retrograde cycle, I have cultivated the philosophy to sit back and laugh at every awkward moment. There’s no need to take everything so seriously. Mercury certainly isn’t!

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