Tuesday, December 21, 2010

the shortest day of the year

Maybe you were lucky enough to catch the lunar eclipse last night, amongst the frostiness and clouds. They say it is the first time in nearly 400 years that the winter solstice and a lunar eclipse have overlapped this way. Maybe that makes this year special, a time unlike any other for new beginnings.

For thousands of years and in many societies, the winter solstice marked the beginning of the new year, a time for rebirth and regeneration. Today's the day when time sort of stops and, after today, the days will start to get just a little bit longer. And when you are itching to grow things, the solstice means hope that spring is eventually coming. Today's a first-class shout out that, even in the bitter cold, cloudy bleakness that surrounds us, there is life and the potential for it. The earth is resting, taking stock, and preparing for another year.

Deep inside my bones, it feels like I should be doing the same. Every inch of me can't wait to get started with growing my own food. I have so many plans and so much to learn that I am perpetually in a tizzy and can't sit still. My mind drifts from vegetable varieties to one day having sheep to spinning wool to the roving in my closet to the knitting projects I need to finish to the socks I want to learn to make to the woods that need clearing and the fence that needs buying and the presents that still need wrapping (literally jumping from one to the next, just like that) and- it's MADNESS! Yesterday I spent nearly the entire day busy. I didn't have to go to work, but I think I sat still for all of twenty minutes before bed. (The holidays aren't helping this either, with the go-go-go of it all. Such a flurry of activity.)

This is killing me...the hustle and bustle creeps up my toes and the length of my legs, tensing and tightening along its route, before it arches over my back and settles in my shoulders as full-blown stress and brushes my creativity entirely away like blowing snowflakes from the palm of your hand.

What I really need to do is step back from the madness and chaos and follow that nesting instinct into a dark and quiet place and simplify my life a bit. I am thankful today is shorter~ there will be less time for hustling and work and more time for thought, reflection and planning, more time to sip tea with my dog's head in my lap and a book in my hand, more time to notice the beauty and stillness right outside my door. It's high time for some beauty for beauty's sake.

Today I will celebrate the solstice by dreaming and wandering, stopping and pausing. I will list out my worries and plans and my dreams and put the poetry back in my journal. Today, for me, is all about the pause before the movement.

How will you mark the shortest day of the year?

Photo from here.

No comments:

Post a Comment