LIVE EACH SEASON
I’m one of those people who gets really depressed in December as the years draws to an end and I think of all the things I wanted to accomplish, but didn’t, though not for a lack of trying. Sometimes I feel like a hamster on the wheel; I can see where I want to go but not always how to get there. Most of the time I deal with it and stay positive. Other times, like on my birthday or throughout the holiday season, I start getting mean about my progress or lack thereof. I hate the feeling of standing still. I hate knowing that I want to be working full-throttle when nothing – absolutely nothing – seems to be moving. I want to throw off the blanket of stillness that seems to wrap itself around the whole world; the things that die or get lost or move on without us. The season of hibernation and cocooning before the spring.
Finally, and usually around the Winter Solstice, I give in. I stop resisting nature’s rhythm and I surrender to the fact that what will be, will be. And then it will change and grow and move and evolve, just as everything always does. Last night I read this passage by my beloved Henry David Thoreau:
Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each. Let them be your only diet drink and botanical medicines.
Resign yourself to the influences of each… that hit me hard. Whatever season you find yourself in – whether it be aching grief or ecstatic joy or uncertain transition – resign yourself and drink it in. Be present. Only by experiencing our present circumstances fully can we move through them with grace. And notice that Thoreau advises us not to numb ourselves out during the process. Be fully awake, fully alive, fully immersed in whatever life is flowing through you right here, right now. Each season arrives with its own gifts. Sometimes we don’t recognize or understand the gift that life offers but I believe that it is always, unfailingly, the opportunity for transformation into something more than we have been until now. Someone new.