The solace of the winter solstice
As December 21 approaches, we are skirting on the edges of dawn’s light, the threshold of tomorrow’s longer days.
For the past few weeks, the sun’s weak rays have barely penetrated the sky. It has an effect on us all, propelling an inward motion, a retreat into our four walls and the ones we build in our minds. Matched by the air’s chill, we are challenged to step foot outside, averting actions requiring outdoor activity so as not to slip on the ice building on our doorsteps.
Just as there are dog or cat people, so too are there winter and summer people. I prefer the warmth. It feels freer somehow – a jaunty
time in which movement is looser and less restricted. I honor those who feel as much joy frolicking gleefully in the snow. But I am not one of them.
Winter is a time of hibernation for me. Although work’s demands require laser-like focus, I continuously battle with my desire to crawl beneath the blanket and slumber. And on those rare occasions, I give in to that impulse, allowing myself to nap on a cold winter’s day.
Not a fan of clothing per se, I seek solace from my rising resentment to dress in layers. Luckily, my survival instinct to stay warm overrides my wish to run barefoot everywhere.
And I am aware of those who do not have the clothing to keep winter’s howl at bay. Humbled by this thought, I return to gratitude for having these things too.
The winter solstice brings a promise of warmer times, of brightness and of unclad frivolity. For now, we must accept our multilayered days, dancing in the shadows until the sun arrives at its apex, lifting its face just a little higher every morning now until – at long last — we reach summer’s reward.