Halloween brings us ghosts, ghouls, horror movies, and haunted houses. But the most terrifying thing about Halloween 2019 is Mercury retrograde. That’s right — this year, Mercury begins to appear to move backwards in its orbit on October 31. In astrology, that means that communications, technology, finances, and self-expression are about to go haywire. And this time, Mercury goes retrograde in Scorpio, perhaps the most intense sign.
“What can be scarier than Mercury retrograde? Mercury Spookygrade showing up to this year’s Halloween festivities all dressed up as the enigmatic and passionate Scorpion!” Narayana Montúfar, Senior Astrologer for Astrology.com and Horoscope.com, tells Refinery29. “But let’s not be too quick to shy away — the tricks this intense, yet fascinating pairing brings can and will turn into treats for those that are daring enough to go beneath the surface.”
That’s right: Mercury retrograde isn’t all bad. “Like with any Mercury retrograde transit, the areas ruled by this planet (communication, commerce, self-expression, etc.) will not be working at their best,” Montúfar says. “However, the situations and areas in which we will encounter hiccups, delays, or interruptions, are those in which we can gain — and benefit — from greater clarity. Mercury spookygrade is here to deliver exactly that.”
Prepare for texts from your exes… but for once, they might be bringing us closure instead of paperclipping us. “We can expect old loves and flames to come back into our lives to discuss the relationship (how they were hurt and if they upset us),” astrologer Lisa Stardust tells Refinery29. “What makes this retrograde different from the rest is that we have the power to heal the past, if we connect with our exes to gain clarity and understanding of ourselves.”
Mercury can also wreak havoc on our finances, so play close attention to you bank account. “Money and debt issues will come back to haunt us too, which is why it’s important to discuss such matters with a financial advisor or confidant who can help us out,” Stardust says. “Also, be advised that travel issues may occur as well.”
Jessica Lanyadoo, author of Astrology For Real Relationships, suggests that we try to stay calm. “This Mercury retrograde, it's really important that we don't jump to conclusions. Information will come to you and no matter how tempting it may be to assume you have the whole story, this isn't likely to be the case,” she says. “Retrogrades are always a good time to review, reflect, and reassess, and Mercury is your ideas, plans, attitudes, and friendships.”
That’s right: you can use Mercury retrograde as a time for positive growth. “Instead of trying to figure other people and their intentions out, strive to have healthy boundaries. Instead of getting even, get healthy,” Lanyadoo says. “How you handle this Mercury retrograde is in many ways a test of your emotional maturity, and a great opportunity to do what's right, even when you feel all kinds of wrong.”
Although we’re all freaking out over the fact that Mercury retrograde begins on Halloween, there’s another big moment to be aware of. “On November 11, Mercury will meet the sun at 18 degrees Scorpio, crossing right through its heart,” Montúfar explains. “This a very rare occurrence and has not happened since 2006.” This moment brings us the opportunity for clarity.
“The best way to handle this combination of energies is by going with the flow and being open to changing our position and opinions as we deal with the information that comes to the surface,” Montúfar says. “Scorpio is a water sign, so expect things to be emotional and intense. However, because Mercury will also be forming positive aspects with taskmaster Saturn, visionary Neptune, and powerful Pluto along his retrograde ride, we can expect positive and long-terms results once the rough waters calm down.”
Mercury goes direct on November 20th, but the retro-shade influence will continue until December 7 — and affect another major holiday. As Stardust explains, “The potential to run into an ex on Thanksgiving is high."