“The term ‘solstice’ comes from the Latin words sol (sun) and sistere (to stand still). At the solstice, the angle between the Sun’s rays and the plane of the Earth’s equator (called declination) appears to stand still.” – Farmer’s Almanac
Becoming still is not celebrated. In a culture that asks for production, movement, excelling, and competing, the last thing to do is to stop. To rest. To reconnect.
There are always more things to do. More tasks to cross off the list.
Until what? And why?
I’m indeed a person with goals and dreams. A human with accomplishments and books. I have pushed this body and this heart to the brink. And I am forever grateful, I could return to stillness.
But it’s taken death. The ultimate prioritizer.
The permission slip to come back to my heart.
Anytime, Everywhere, Right Now
It doesn’t matter what my particular story is or when you’re reading this. Or if you agree.
Grief connects us all. Loss is a shared human experience. But in a world where moving on is seen to be some sort of badge of honor, it is shadow work for the collective.
My heart knows it wants to run from it. Especially on solstice. I want to focus on the return of the light in California. I want to re-imagine and feel into the longer days ahead. Where things are less bleak and cold and slow. I notice myself wanting to fill up all the widening spaces and control time. (As though I could. Or should. Or want to.)
So my hope and wish for you (and me) this solstice, is to find a place of stillness.
If only for a moment.
If only for a minute.
Let your heart beat just for this moment. Just for one minute where it is not striving. Where it is not trying so freaking hard. Where it is just resting in the comfort of another beat. And another beat. And another.
Take a deep breath into the story of the bones that have framed you thus far. That have held the structure of your movements. That have protected your heart and lungs. That have held you up, even as you fell.
Take a deep breath into the story of the air that enlivens, that restores, and that releases. Again and again.
And reconnect. To you. To the home, to the place you return and never leave. Even when you try.
The Sun in Stillness
You may not be able to witness the way the treks across the sky and seems to stop entirely. You may not remember. You may be moving or sleeping or working or getting the cats fed.
The mundane. What happens with your heartbeat too. What happens because of your heart’s ability to feed you and nourish you, no matter how much you forget, avoid, or settle in your life.
Just for a moment, I invite you to be still enough to remember.
Hand on heart. Be still. Even the sun takes a little break, well, appears to anyway.
You can too.
Give yourself precious permission and glorious gratitude.
You have made it here.
And you will make it to the dawn again.