The Habit of Peace

Every season is nice, but each one ends up feeling about 6 weeks too long for my taste. I have always hated the month of January, long, cold, gray, lonely January.

And this year February starts with more snow.

I may be tired of the cold, but the snow is beautiful. What makes it swirl as it falls? It’s like a soft blanket for the soul. Watching it fall soothes the hurts, it feels like a hug.

Quiet. That’s what it is. Snow falling is the definition of quiet, even if you are surrounded by chaos, lightly falling snow is a visual representation of peace.

Peace. I’m still learning the meaning of the word. I used to think that peace meant that everything was perfect, something to be strive d for. If you could get all your ducks in a row, you would have peace. If you said the right prayers, were open enough to god’s plan and direction, you would have peace.

Lately, rather than something to be achieved, peace feels more like something that just exists, always available, we just don’t always realize it.

How does one discover the aspects of peace within? What does it mean to tap into that element of ourselves? In some ways is feels connected with being thankful, grateful for life and relationship and the everyday. In other ways it feels connected to loving, comforting and nurturing oneself. It’s not a formula, a step by step procedure “1, 2, 3 poof!” Anxiety is gone. It’s more of a mystery, but obvious at the same time.

When I find myself at peace, I wonder how it is that I ever end up in times of anxiety and depression. And yet even with that knowledge I still find myself there sometimes, filled with worry, awake instead of asleep, self-criticism and self-hatred out of habit.

Perhaps that’s what peace is, a habit. How does one get into the habit of peace? Not to seek it out of achieve it, but to observe it and be open to it. To spot peace and to think about it, as one would spot beauty and contemplate it. With this new awareness of peace, I find myself wanting to capture it, to make it mine. But perhaps peace cannot be confined that way, perhaps it belongs to everyone.

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