I grew up surrounded by a large, warm Italian family, and my second home was Nonna's house. Nonna (Italian for Grandma) had six children, and my father was the oldest.
His two sisters, my Zia (Italian for Aunt) and Aunt Anna shared a bedroom. When my mother took us for a visit she'd sit in the kitchen with my aunts and gossip. After us kids got bored eavesdropping, my sister, my cousin Maria and I would sneak into my aunts' room and try on their array of high-heeled shoes and make-up. Then we would leaf through issues of Cosmopolitan or Glamour magazine. Their room was a world of adult feminine mystique that intrigued us to no end.
Zia was the traditional aunt, but Aunt Anna, the younger of the two sisters, was the "career woman."
She was (and still is) the initiator -- the go-getter. She always speaks her mind and is never afraid to rush head first into new territory. She has enjoyed a life of accomplishment, and being able to assert her independence has always been a driving force in her life. Of course it is. It needs to be. Aunt Anna, born March 25, is an Aries. And by the way ... if you're curious about which Sun, Moon or Rising sign you are, try our Essential Birth Report.
Even though Aunt Anna was the baby of the family, she was way ahead of her siblings in terms of outlook and achievement. She was the first sibling to graduate high school and go on to secretarial school -- a big deal in the 1970s for a young woman who came from a strict Italian upbringing!
There were other obstacles. My father's family grew up on a farm in Italy, and after my grandfather's premature death they came to America struggling in many ways. My Aunt broke the mold in my family and paved the way for all of the DeSimone women who followed after her -- including me!
She taught us that we should have career ambitions and shouldn't be afraid to go after our dreams. She taught us that just because no one else had done it before in our family, it wasn't impossible. It just meant we'd have to be brave enough to do what she did -- go where no one else had gone before. And she proved that being gutsy had its rewards.
Aunt Anna went on to become a successful executive secretary in corporate America. She was in charge of all the other secretaries in the companies she worked for. What else would you expect for Aries? They must lead, they must be first and they MUST achieve.
First things first
A cardinal sign, Aries possesses all the initiative and drive that is required to propel oneself ahead in life. Cardinal signs are the starters of the zodiac -- the leaders. When you add the Fire element of Aries to the cardinal nature, you have a real potential powerhouse! The enthusiasm, motivation and zest for life are all attributed to the fire that burns in every Aries. When you consider that Mars is the ruling planet of this ballsy sign, you can see why they always have the guts to ram headfirst into a new situation, and possess this neverending energy and drive. It leaves the rest of us in awe.
Aries, however, does need to watch for burn-out. They are so bent on being recognized as No. 1 in some way that they aren't conscious of when they have had enough. This is when Aries can crash. Ruled by the head, they often suffer from headaches if they've gone beyond their limits. Even so, once Aries recharges they are out running marathons again. Or, in my Aunt's case, it was walkathons. She was really big on those!
Another thing Aries must guard against is reckless behavior. My Aunt Anna wasn't the reckless type, but her brother, my Uncle Sal, the April Fool baby, was guilty of some impulsive and reckless actions in his day. But he's still a leader, and at one time owned his own successful construction company. What happened? He got bored.
Energy to spare
All Aries need continued excitement in their life. If they don't get this they move on to the next career, idea, romantic partner or location. My Aunt put all her tremendous energy into physical activities such as dancing and walking marathons, and a heck of a lot of exercise, but my Uncle Sal puts his energy into his own versions of fun -- which include travel, gambling and the mindset that life is way too short to take seriously.
The winning edge
Winning is important to this sign, because it is (to them) the ultimate mark of success. Being the first sign in the zodiac, they value being first more than the others. Indeed, Aries is the most competitive sign of all. As Aries becomes more evolved, however, it's interesting to notice how the sign goes from competing with others to determine their value, to competing with the self. Aries sets goal after goal and begins one new adventure after the next to test his own limits and strength, and to prove that he can endure whatever life throws his way.
So, the next time you see the impatient person speeding past you on the expressway, or you're waiting in line at the post office and the guy in back of you keeps tapping his foot loudly, exasperated, realize these people probably have some personal planet in Aries. Their impatience is simply a part of who they are. You can't blame them really. They've got places to go, people to see, things to do ... they've got a life to win.