So you’re in the thick of it…doing “grown up” Saturnian things, putting in the work, looking forwards and wondering: “WHEN will my Saturn return FINALLY be done?”
Your Saturn return is officially done when transiting Saturn moves out of the sign that your natal Saturn is in.
That being said, there is a lot more nuance to an important transit such as this one, and when you look at your own chart, you’ll realize that actually there could be several dates to the end of your Saturn return.
Allow me to explain.
Saturn will likely move in and out of your Saturn sign several times.
Saturn has regular retrograde periods, during which time it will move backwards over points that it has previously passed. This means that most of the time, Saturn will be in a particular sign, leave that sign, go back into that sign, and then leave the sign again. For this reason, some people even have Saturn touch their exact Saturn return degree 3 times!
On March 7, 2023, Saturn will leave the sign of Aquarius for the next 29ish years and will move into the sign of Pisces. He will not retrograde back into Aquarius.
On May 26, 2025, Saturn will move out of Pisces into Aries.
On July 12, 2025, Saturn will start moving retrograde (backwards) in Aries. He will move all the way back into Pisces on September 2, 2025.
On January 14, 2026, Saturn will stop moving retrograde, and will start moving forwards in Pisces, towards Aries again.
He will enter Aries again on February 15, 2026.
Here, you can see that if someone had their Saturn return in the last few degrees of Pisces, their Saturn return would be exact several times, and their Saturn return would not “technically” end until Saturn left the sign of Pisces for good.
You will feel your Saturn return energy the most within a 10 degree orb.
In astrology, we use a proximity scale to determine how close a planet or body needs to be in order for someone to feel the energy of that planet. This range is called an “orb”.
So the orb for a Saturn return is 10 degrees. This means that when transiting Saturn is within 10 degrees of your natal Saturn degree, this energy will be at its peak and will be felt the most intensely by you.
This will be the most significant period of your Saturn return.
After this period has passed, the intensity of the Saturn energy will be felt decreasingly, until it is no longer felt. (That is, unless Saturn retrogrades over that point several times. See the paragraph above if this is your particular case.)
How to calculate your Saturn return orb:
1-first you need to look up your natal chart, and find out the sign and degree of your natal Saturn. This is a great website that I often use, and bonus it’s free!
2- Count 5 degrees before and 5 degrees after your natal Saturn point. This spectrum will be the 10 degree orb around your Saturn return transit where you will feel the Saturn return energy the most.
3- Look up the dates that Saturn will be within those degrees. You can use a free online ephemeris. This one is free, thorough, and (most importantly) accurate.
Your Saturn return experience will feel fresh until it is integrated.
Even though the Saturn return period lasts as long as Saturn is transiting in the sign that it was in when you were born, it’s effects will be felt very long after that. The purpose of this transit is to establish the structure for the next chapter of your life. In many ways, you are stepping out of childhood and into adulthood, and it can feel like you are being born anew.
Many people have big, foundational life changing things happen to them during this time. Things like having a baby, getting married, buying a house or leaving a religion (me!) are not uncommon during a Saturn return because it is a time when we are laying the groundwork for the next 30ish years of our life!
Often times events that are very emotionally challenging to process occur during this pivotal time, and even when Saturn “officially” moves out of the sign, these events can feel fresh.
One of the most important things that needs to occur during a Saturn return is an inner processing of the things that happened during that period. It is vital for the individual to emotionally assimilate what occurred in their lives, how they felt about it, and how they can move forwards from it.
While it often seems from the outside that Saturn is the bringer of hard work and limitations, he actually is one of the tools the Universe uses to help us grow into emotional maturity!
So, your Saturn return will still feel raw to your brain until you take the time and make the space to process, assimilate and attribute meaning to your Saturn return experiences.
“Time” is not a factor in our brain’s emotional responses, so if you have not yet dealt with the emotional challenges of this tumultuous period, your brain will continue to send you distress signals until it has been assured that everything is okay.
Once that happens, you will have the inner freedom to move forwards with the wisdom and lessons that you gained (earned, in fact) during that time.
If you or a loved one are in the midst of your Saturn return, rest assured, it won’t last forever, and there are many precious gifts that will follow the hard work that you do during this time.
You will know that your Saturn return is all the way, officially, completely, 100 percent DONE when Saturn has moved past your orb of influence, out of your natal Saturn sign, and you have integrated the emotional material of that time.
My Saturn return happened a handful of years ago, and now as someone who’s “been there and done that” (I mean, at least once so far), it is always my pleasure to share the wisdom that I gleaned during that season.
If you are currently navigating your Saturn return and would like to sit down with a knowledgeable astrologer to take an in-depth look at your birth chart, you’ve come to the right place. Saturn readings are one of my favourite readings to do, and it would be my pleasure to help you understand your Saturn placements so that you can take practical steps in building meaningful life structures. Feel free to reach out to me via email at Info@ThatZoiLife.com
Wishing you grace, wisdom, and perseverance as you build your beautiful life.
Aja Celeste is a mom to 6 beautiful children and a twin mom! She is also creator and writer of That Zoi Life and a professionally trained Evolutionary Astrologer who has been doing astrology for 7 years. She is also a health care assistant, has a Bachelor of Ministry Degree, and is passionate about supporting people in conscious parenting. She also does Psychosomatics using Recall Healing.
Please contact her at [info@ThatZoiLife.com] if you would like to find out more about working with her.