A Body and Mind in Sync
First Day of Winter. December 21st. 3:30pm on the eastern edge of the central time zone. It’s grey, foggy and wet. The dusk is so deep that the holiday lights have come on. Today is the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere; a moment when the wheel of the year turns again toward the lengthening of days and the coming of Summer.
In previous years, I was at work on this day. I would have noted the ever earlier sunset and perhaps have driven a bit more carefully on the way home through the wooded hillside of Pennsylvania; conscious of the altered routines and challenged circadian rhythms of my fellow creatures. But the Solstice would have remained an external phenomenon. It would not have had the power to alter my daily rounds.
Today is different. I have walked these hours through a liminal landscape. My brain has been aware of the time of day, the events on the calendar, the household chores at hand. My body, however, has insisted that I listen to the rhythms within. I have been sitting quietly. Reading, thinking, deeply aware…deeply at peace. And when after lunch I felt the pull of sleep, I did not fight it. Wrapped in an afghan, I stretched out on the sofa and slept, allowing my body and brain to operate for once in tandem, cradled and motionless in the arms of the gathering dark.
Today is a special day. My heart, body and genetic memories know it. They always have. But today, my mind has known it too, and joining my spirit, has entered into the deep peace of winter.
This is good. Very Good.