Tomorrow is the Solstice and I find myself sitting here shaking my head, utterly disbelieving that we’ve reached Midwinter already. The last month has flown by and suddenly I’m faced with a solid fortnight of visits and celebrations, people and presents that I have (in all honesty) been somewhat dreading. Not because of the people or the absolute joy and blessing it is to spend time with those I love, but for all the extra reasons to expend energy I don’t have and the struggle to somehow maintain a sense of Spirit amidst all the tinsel and turkey and talk.
It can be hard at the best of times to find opportunities for quiet reflection and deep thought. When playing host to friends or being a house-guest for others it becomes almost impossible. So I find myself staring through the darkness towards Solstice day and worrying that despite all my talk of taking notice and walking the Wheel I might not be able to fully appreciate this still moment in the year.
Now, starting the new year feeling disappointed in myself does not sound particularly appealing. But nor does the prospect of barreling into 2014 without taking some time to assimilate and rest; I can’t fully explain why but it feels important to do so, this year more than in years passed.
It has been a year of growth and change of new titles and new connections that all need some settling. And as I said before my energy levels are depleted and need a chance to refresh. More than that though it feels like I need some time in a dark and undetermined space to dream the dreams that will somehow shape my upcoming year. I feel a little lost at the moment; but not the fun kind of lost where you have a compass and daylight and a sense of adventure. More that heavy, sinking feeling when the compass is broken and you are surrounded by mist, unsure whether your next step will touch land at all.
I am desperate for some dream time and some dream food to feed it. I want to let my mind wander and my heart sing, to be soft and silent and still…
Instead – in the coming days -I will become some desperate, demented diva who skirts the edge of over-controlled madness and a rather messy nervous breakdown. She’s the one who writes lists, makes schedules and loses sleep over room plans. She so desperately wants to ensure that everyone has a great time, is happy and well fed and has all their needs met that she blocks out her own. An impossible task you might say, but this crazy lady doesn’t let such paltry things as possibility hold her back. She’ll dance in circles and jump through hoops and try her hardest (and then some) to be everything everyone wants or needs her to be.
But the Solstice is a time for the Self at its most stark, most bare. The land – if we dare to look – is revealed in its most basic forms: stone, wood, water, warmth and brutal cold. The trees silhouette against crisp winter skies and we breath air honed to a knife-edge and know that Death is clean and close; and that Life feels all the more vital and vibrant because of it.
In the face of such clarity we shouldn’t be spending energy on making mockeries of ourselves. That energy can be used to nurture the seed in our soul that carries our truest thoughts and deepest desires. In the winter darkness our simplest, most basic truths can be unearthed and the beauty of our unique self can be revealed if we let them. Right now we should be focusing on who we are regardless of the expectations, others’ or our own. Only then might we see where our dreams truly want to take us.
So perhaps this Solstice, instead of wishing for silence, stillness and solitude in my environment, I can cultivate them within me. I’ll carry them inside myself, to all my encounters and allow them to feed my soul with the energy of the season. And knowing that they are there, held safe within, I will wrap the seed of my Self in winter darkness and sit with it through a long night, trying to trust that even though my attention might not always be with it, that seed will will stir, it will absorb. Finally I will take a (fallen) leaf from the deciduous trees that stand so bare and so beautiful at this time of year and dare to expose my bare self to those around me. I’ll let them see the delicate connections, the startling similarities and the determined differences that make up my snowflake Self and allow them to meet me without the ditzy diva causing distractions.
Perhaps this is the best gift I could offer anyone this Solstice.
I only hope it is well received.
This will likely be the last post of 2013, so to everyone who has read or followed this blog over the past month: Thank you! I hope you have a merry festive season and look forward to walking the Wheel with you in the New Year.
Be blessed 🙂
UPCOMING POSTS IN 2014:
* Why I Walk The Wheel... – How following the Wheel of the Year has impacted on my life for the better
* How I Walk The Wheel – Looking at the core practices behind my Wheel walking