This Chinese New Year ushers in the Year of the Snake – extra special in our household as it’s my oldest daughter’s symbol. Many of my friends are in the same boat, wondering what Chinese beliefs may hold true in our own children, good or bad, so I looked up some of the typical characteristics and expectations for the coming year.
Chinese legend has it that if there was a snake in the house, the family would always be free from want, and they would never starve. Good to know, for sure!
Snakes are considered to be intelligent and wise – yet also cunning and clever, scheming in a calculating manner. Uh oh, for those of us with middle-schoolers. Not exactly what we want to hear. However, snakes also plan to achieve their goals, and they are intuitive with a sixth sense. They are thinkers who ponder ideas, and they are cool during a crisis. Not bad traits to have.
Parents of snakes will nod their head in agreement to hear that their kids can be headstrong and willful. Snakes also have a vivid memory, which in part explains why my own daughter is so good at arguing with me. They tend to pout and hold grudges when embarrassed or angry, such as if they are picked on or upset – be careful of snakes lashing out if this happens.
Snakes are also kind and vibrant, introspective and refined. They tend to like calm environments as they are easily stressed, yet they do not become flustered easily. Sleep and relaxation are important to snakes.
Preferring to work alone, snakes are sometimes seen as slackers. However, they are calculated workers and meet their deadlines, just at their own pace. This must be frustrating for teachers, and certainly during homework time every weekday!
I found the friendship portion rather interesting, as it’s a fluctuating presence in our adolescent’s life. Surprisingly, snakes don’t keep a large group of friends, although they love social functions. They are rather hard to get to know because they keep feelings locked inside. They are quite loyal to the close friends they do have, but friends should know not to betray a snake or there may be retaliation. I marvel that my own daughter easily floats from one group of friends to another, without having a regular clique that she sticks with. Now I might understand why – it’s just not her nature!
Snakes are materialistic and like to keep up with the Joneses, although they tend not to like shopping (here’s where my daughter most definitely differs from the typical snake!). They like luxury, especially on vacation, and they like comfort in their home décor.
Snakes like to feel safe and secure; they like protection. They can be possessive and jealous, making them irritable or quick tempered, but that’s mostly because they are intense and passionate people. Some of their dislikes? Being interrupted (oops…), being misled, and failure. Not too unreasonable.
The Year of the Dragon is considered to be extremely lucky due to the power of the animal. Since the Year of the Snake follows, it is sometimes called “little dragon” with some of that power and luck aura rubbing off onto the snake person. There is nothing boring in the life of a person born in the year of the snake!
Each year, the zodiac animal is tempered by one of the five elements, this year being water. Specific characteristics for the snake born in the year of the water element are: they are influential and insightful; they manage others well and are good for organizations; they are motivated and intellectual, determined and resolute; they want to be rewarded for efforts; and they are affectionate with families and friends.
What might you expect your snake child to grow up to be? The Chinese believe the following occupations suit them best: scientist, potter, analyst, jeweler, spiritual leader, sociologist, dietician, astrologer, magician, investigator or painter. Do you see your child becoming one of these someday?
Lucky colors for snakes are red and yellow, and lucky numbers are 2, 4 and 9. And, one reason not to dislike Mondays anymore, it’s the lucky day of the week for snakes!
So, take it for what it is, an ancient blueprint on how a person born in the Year of the Snake tends to be. My snake is proud to have her year highlighted, so here’s hoping we all have a wonderful Year of the Snake!