we travelled back in time this week, back to a period when clothes were woven on wooden looms from wool shorn from the community's sheep, bread (and cinnamon rolls...mmmm) baked in a clay oven from flour grist in the mill, chili cooked over an open fire as music and stories were told in that same fire's warmth.
and in this century, heck, this millenium, people came together, working hard to make it all happen so that their kids could live such a day.
as it fades into the past, i see how my heart reveled in that rhythm and longs still for it to seep into my very 21st century life.
living takes effort now and 170 years ago. the difference for me is the pace of that work. overwhelm and overstimulation can spring upon me without warning. i suppose that this is why i blog, and why i practice presence and practice joy. in the noticing of my life, i slow it down and, if I am really quiet, i can sense that pioneer rhythm calling me.
as they tumbled around on the bed tonight, i quietly gazed. friends. true and dear friends. he, giggling. she, tickling. me, witnessing.
in my role as loving observer, i left the camera on the counter. but now that the moment has passed and both lie sleeping next to each other, i peer around my camera roll for evidence of other sweet moments over the past few weeks.
train tracks and late night trips to the ice cream store in footy pjs. it's a running theme in our lives, apparently. friends. true and dear friends.
As the days continue to shorten on their journey to the winter solstice, I embrace the darkness. The sun rises later and sets earlier; the light decreases with each day; the dark hours grow.
Modern inventions (like that new-fangled electric bulb that lights up our world) have changed our relationship with the solstice, but the deep truth is still there. Darkness and light exist both outside and within us – dancing around each other, each bringing its particular gifts.
Day turns to Night turns to Day turns to Night; Spring turns to Summer turns to Autumn turns to Winter…and back to Spring again. We spend time outside (in nature, in relationships) and return home- to our physical home as well as to our inner-self for contemplation.
Stonehenge, Newgrange, Chichen Itza. These ancient ruins remind me that cultures older than ours understood the cyclical of our lives. I, too, know that the sun (the dawn, the Spring, the ease) will come back. And yet I also honor this time of darkness, knowing it to be as important as the months of light.
So, I sit…growing comfortable with the darkness, the night, the winter days….learning more from the dark depths within me…discovering the places where my old wounds and heavier emotions seek cover.
Light and dark, activity and rest. Light shows us what is in front of us…our path is illuminated. In the darkness, we grope. It is unknown.
All I can do is know that I am here…and understand that light follows darkness…and darkness follows light. It is the cyclical nature of our lives…
After a week of glorious sun and celebration, my introverted side began to make herself heard. I could hear the whispers of "quiet," "cuddles," and "simplicity." This morning, I opened the curtains to find darkening skies and the first sprinkling of rain. I love it when the weather conspires with me.