Winter has arrived in all her glory at the bottom of Africa. Icy mornings, winds that make your bones ache and darkness cloaking us from 5 p.m. I dislike winter with it’s brooding shadows and perpetual cold but I recognise its importance.
Fortunately, winter also comes with sunny days. Bitingly cold, but if you can find a sheltered corner and raise your face to the warmth you will start to feel the necessary dormancy of the Earth and translate it to yourself.
I’m using winter to take a break and recharge my heart.
A year ago, I started on a journey to reduce my stress and find hygge in my life. It is expected that a year later, I enter the winter cycle of this transformation. As a human being I am tuned to the cycles of the seasons and it is time for introspection, to turn into myself like a dormouse going into hibernation.
Do I feel that my stress has reduced? Yes.
Did I expand my knowledge? Yes.
Am I a kinder person? Still working on that one.
Did I find my tribe? Yes.
Has my health improved? Somewhat.
It has been so hard and so easy. My time has been better spent, my time has been abused. I’ve gone off track, and found my way home. I’ve lost people and found new people. I’ve given up and persevered. I’ve gone backwards and kept on putting one foot, thought, word and intent in front of another. Conscious living is a disciplined art form and a moving target. A delicate dance between ego and soul.
As I enter my winter, it is necessary to stop and smell the woodsmoke, feel the wind slice my core and savour the first cup of tea while I watch the sun rise over my city. To acknowledge the progress that I’ve made and think about the next steps with no pressure for perfection.
It is time to be grateful for the winter, it is a chance to rest.
To sleep, perchance to dream – William Shakespeare