Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Inside Out - Thoughts on Change Amidst Winter Gray

Not that long ago, gray days like today were depressing, nearly incapacitating. Then something shifted. I, the non-exerciser who sits listening and writing for most of the day, intentionally began a New Year's resolution two months early. I began to work out or walk most days even when it rained.  I strung clear lights from the evergreen at my back door as days grew shorter. If stores could start decorating before Halloween, why not light my little tree?  Every day around dusk through February those lights came on.  Last but not least, I began really noticing trees. Barren limbs I realized looked like pathways in the sky or arms of praise reaching outward and high.

I'm still not quite sure what possessed me that year. But what I do know is things didn't begin to change. I began to change.   Thanks to this accidental recipe of inspiration, action and imagination, I began to experience the outside differently because the inside had changed. 

This change didn't make me immune to loss and sorrow.  Within a seven year span there were five holidays surrounded by death, four human relatives and my cat of many years all who died just before or after Christmas. Decorating the tree mow means letting the sadness associated with these losses surface rather than ignore it or push it away. 

This year the lights are on the evergreen where they'll stay all winter. I work out and walk and still watch the trees. I've also taken to bundling up in the cold and sitting outside.  On clear nights even in the city, I savor the star sprinkled Universe holding Earth and watch the nightly shift in the moon's path over my home.  When it's overcast, I study the interplay of the clouds colored by soft street light.

The tree's decorated and the sadness felt. I suspect that won't change and that's really more than okay. Rather than block the flow of feeling, I want to let sweet sadness flow through me.  Stopping the flow and not being me is a big part of how the gray came to be.

So here at the start of another gray day, instead of checking the forecast to see how long gray's here to stay, I'll take a run/walk, feed the birds and greet the green peppers and lavender still growing in the portable greenhouse, all things that keep the light shining in me.

How do you keep your inner light shining?

Imagine the Shift.....
Dawn, The Good News Muse 13 December 2011

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