Winter. A time to go within. Most of us are so over-saturated with people from all the holiday parties and family gatherings that we relish in the fact that we will finally have some very sought after alone time. We plan for it. We de-clutter the house, starting first with those warm and space consuming holiday decorations, then finding new homes for all the wonderful gifts that we may or may not have planned space for. Some of us gather up our first line up of books we’ve been meaning to read, or magazines we’ve neglected over the busy months. We get ourselves ready to enjoy the quietness of life and think about how or what we are becoming. Sometimes, it takes a few weeks to settle in to that routine. Some people have a hard time letting go of the over populated calendar and feel a little lost. Others, delve right in, cup of tea and good book in hand and welcome the opportunity to catch up on all those recorded and unwatched shows. Ahhh, winter. She’s a nice old gal who allows us to take a breather from the cold world and burn a flame inside of ourselves for warmth.
But when winter comes on very strong, I often find myself wondering if I want to emerge or if I will be successful at it. I find my cozy little busy minded self is content in this quietness. It is in this comfort that I realize I don’t mind my own company and I enjoy the time of low stress and self-indulgence with the things that fuel me. I read, cook, write, knit, watch some TV, write some more, play games with the kids, and think about my writing. I feel myself becoming more and more of the shy side of me, the one that my friends don’t see and laugh about when I mention it. I find that I could easily make up excuses to get out of any and all social events and would gladly trade a day out for a day in. Do I enjoy my friends? Yes, absolutely. Do I miss them? Every single day. But in this state I am pretty content to just be me. And this side of me, that could eat, sleep, and write and allow nothing else to matter, bothers me. Not because I’m in it, but because there is this image in my head of really good writers that I imagine are social outcasts or that prefer to be all alone to their muses, and I think that I could possibly be swallowed up in it, never to return or care. Would I care if I was this incredible writer that avoided the public like a flu epidemic?
So if I wouldn’t care, then what’s the big deal? The big deal is what does one write if they don’t live life? What can you bring to the keyboard if you don’t get out there and breathe fresh air and hear the leaves of the trees as they sing a fall song? What is life without the meaningful friends that are like cherished gifts that can only be created with 2 people working towards the same relationship? What is life without an old friend to reminisce about how far we have grown in this life we live? Life is about balance and life is always about living it. So I plan my days knowing that winter will end and when it does spring will find its way into my backyard, my soul, and my life again and I will emerge ready to face the busy-ness of life again with a freshness that only a winter within can bring. Every season brings the next, every story has an ending, and every breath has meaning. So carry on Ms. Winter, but know this, I am inside here waiting for you to fade away and the blooms on the trees to emerge. I am not lost in this business of winter, I’m just hibernating until the warmth comes back to the world so I can spring this new version of me on you.