I am writing this sat in the early morning dark, my favourite time to write. The room is lit by just the Christmas tree lights and the ghostly glow of the laptop turned down low. Today is the Solstice, the turning of the year when the reign of darkness is at its peak before the returning of the light.
For many of us, the past few years have been filled with darkness, the endless anxiety, the missing of loved ones, the trying to get back to the ‘new normal, or is it the ‘new, new, normal’ now?
These past few years have been scary and the losses some have had to bear have been unbearable. It is hard not to fear the darkness, to feel as if it will swallow us up, before we turn our heads looking for the sun, looking for those few extra moments of light, I want to remind us, or maybe myself, of the nurture of the darkness.
Now is the season to rest and recover. It is in the dark, in our sleep that we repair ourselves. Our bodies wake from the darkness renewed. And in the darkness of mid-winter, we can recharge our souls, and reflect on the things we’d like more of, the things we’d like to let go.
I’m not talking about getting a better job or losing 20lbs. I’m not talking about New Year’s resolutions or major lifestyle reboots. I’m talking about the things that nurture you. The things that bring you joy, the things that make you smile. And it’s hard sometimes, to find these things.
For some of us, life is hard. Whether that’s dealing with the current pandemic, our own mental health, or the health of our loved ones. Maybe it’s struggling to make ends meet, the constant worry if you can feed your family, or if you’ll have electric at the end of the month. It’s hard in all this, to find joy. Finding that spark of light in the darkness can feel like just another thing on a list that you, and only you, are failing at. You are not alone.
The darkness of the longest night is here to hold us. The darkness is a time of letting us sit, curled up on the sofa with a Christmas movie and a mince pie, reading a book, playing computer games with friends. The darkness is a time just for us, even when it’s hard. Even when life is wearing you down. Even if it’s just for five minutes. The darkness is a time to rest.
And that is my wish for you on this Winter Solstice.
My wish for you is to know that you are not alone in the darkness, to know that you are loved and cherished, that you are a bright shining star in the inky darkness of the sky.
My wish is that you get a moment to rest, a moment for yourself, to sow the seeds for what it is that nurtures you for your coming summer, even if right now you don’t know what that might be.
The darkness doesn’t last forever and soon, second by second, we will all be turning to the light.