Winter is a time for inner exploration, a time to focus on soulful growth. A blanket of snow drops over the earth to silence our surroundings, and we, too, become quiet. As we slow down, it becomes apparent that we are one with the seasons.
For me, this slower pace has not always been the easiest stride to adopt. This was the first year where I really allowed myself to sink into dormancy. My life was in transition along with the weather, and I had no choice but to let go and rest into the moment.
In the time of darkness and chill, it is tempting to rush ahead and jump into the daydreams of future sunshine and warmth. The spring can call us away to live in a place that does not yet exist. A place where it is easy to be present because the grass is green, the fruit is ripe, and the plants reach their petals up to the sun. It is much harder to be present in the dark and seemingly dead of winter. But only when we truly snuggle into the cold of winter do we arrive at spring. After all, the only way to get to is to go through.
When I caught myself leaping into imaginary sun rays to smell the not-yet blooms of flowers, I practiced a return to the present moment through breath. I leaned into the not knowing what was coming after the stillness. I sat with myself in solitude and explored the discomfort of unearthing previous habits and beliefs. I worked to let go of dusty old stories in order to adopt new mantras to live out when that sunshine of spring did reappear. I contemplated how if we do not allow ourselves to take part in this natural cycle of the seasons, we will not have the stored energy to be awake for spring. So I hibernated. I rested. And thank goodness I did because as soon as spring did hit, it was a whirlwind of activity.
The earth began to wake up and stretched its little grassy arms up toward the sky. The community awoke with it.
The energy of this spring awakening inspired the first Prints & Plants workshop at a Farm Equinox Party to celebrate the transition into a colorful season. We used local veggies to print (and to eat) in joyful song and stories.
Now the days are growing longer and I practice being fully present to all of the gifts of this season. <3