Pause – Winter Solstice

We have reached the winter solstice! It is the first day of winter and the shortest day with the longest night of the year. Here in Minnesota with the cold descending and the dark arriving early it is easy to get lost in the darkness allowing the mind to spin deeply into negative thoughts.

It has been a wild few weeks with things breaking down in multiple directions. Some little things and others not so little. There are worries that surface about aging family and health. We have had our own infrastructure break down at the house (we are on day 11 with on hot water in our house – a long story partly influenced by the pandemic supply chain issues). There is the usual back ground noice of government/politic backdowns and the never ending issue of the pandemic/world health issues. I won’t even begin to discuss the climate issues some of what we have been experiencing here in the midwest with warm weather and then dropping temps with wild winds and tornados.

I sit here tonight having missed the poetry and meditation offered by Krista Tippet at On Being and her friends, that I thought might listen to to easy my weary head. I realize I can easily spin into the winter darkness but I don’t think that is going to help. I want to move towards the light. The Christmas holiday is arriving and although we are not fully ready and we will not all be able to gather it still can and will be a moment of light. A time of joy for a 2 year old who is now beginning to process what this season is all about. He now understand snow and the fun that can be had. The making of way too many cookies and the lights upon a tree. He shared in the bringing of cookie gifts to the neighbor friends and the watching of the joy in their faces.

As I find myself tumbling into the darkness I just turn and look to the light. Each day a bit longer – a few minutes each day. Each smile of the two year old as he discovers another joy to be had settles my soul. There are poems to read and music to listen to – all that bring light. (Several new garden books to read)

I find I need to just take pause and look for the light. It is there even on this very long cold dark night.

“When we pause, allow a gap and breathe deeply, we can experience instant refreshment. Suddenly, we slow down, look out, and there’s the world.”
— Pema Chödrön

Here is to the holiday season – however you choose to celebrate and enjoy it!

Find time to pause, breathe and look out for the light because it is there! I promise you!

A two year olds view of Christmas!

About Joanne Toft

I am a retired Minneapolis Public School teacher. I walk, garden, care for my Grandson and write. Life is good!
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1 Response to Pause – Winter Solstice

  1. Ramona says:

    A wonderful post, Joanne! It’s so easy to tumble into the darkness, but your post reminds me the light is there.Thanks for these words.

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