Midwinter is here. I feel it in my energy levels. I see it in the light. It’s been cold here: dry and close to freezing most days. Today it warmed up enough to rain. In the mornings we’re awake for the sunrises, but we don’t have to wait long. The days feel ever so slightly longer. The growing light is welcome.
The first part of winter always feels intense to me. It comes on the end of an autumn cull and the high holidays of Samhain. This year was no different. But the level of intensity of this winter has surprised me. I feel slightly at the end of my rope.
First, there was the deep and expansive work that my husband and I started. We took some huge risks, we dug deep, we started excavating old wounds. Second, I took a huge risk with my closest friend; it didn’t end well. Third, my son, typically emotionally intense anyway, is four and half years old and more intense than ever. I have been told this is normal for this age. Fourth, I just made a huge commitment to my tradition and spiritual journey by choosing dedication.
The first and second areas challenged me so deeply that I felt it was the opening and purging blade of Kali working open heart surgery upon me. I emerged with a blacker, bolder heart. Adam, my husband, and I have come out of this winter stronger and healthier than ever. The love between us is deeper and bolder, too. My friend and I are tentative, but healing. I do not know the future there, but it shines like a diamond.
Adam is convinced that our son is on the way out of whatever phase he’s been in. I’m taking his word for it, because I don’t see it. I’m just too tired. My patience is frayed. I don’t have the capacity to hold any more space for any more people. All of this deep winter work has expanded me – my heart, my energy levels, my capacity to hold conflict and tension and not knowing, my compassion, my understanding of people…… It’s beautiful, it’s deeply spiritual – but I’m tired.
The light I see growing in the mornings and lingering in the evenings is a hopeful sign. I don’t know if I’ll get to rest – do parents ever get to do that? But fresh, new air is coming. A few of the bushes have the faintest of new growth on them. There is new life around the corner, brighter light, stronger light. I need this hope and this encouragement from the land around me.
I don’t know what the spring holds for me. But the light is growing.