It’s not even winter yet, as far as the calendar judges. Yet the snow has fallen in huge, fluffy bunches since November, more than blanketing my home with its brilliant white and deep freeze.
My steps crunch or whisper as I move across this harsher, still endlessly beautiful landscape. I pause to consider hillocks and mounds, wondering if they cover rocks to trip me or latticed bushes to suck me down into a sprawl. As I cast a glance at the hills, the mountains, the light slanting across the sky and firing up the red rocks, my eyes drink in the scenery that not only nurtures my soul but sustains my very essence.
Winter here offers solace and solitude, reflection and introspection. Some days it also tests my limits with severe wind chill, precipitous temperature drops, and an often aching sense of loneliness and being at the farthest ends of an empty earth.
This season also gives me that most precious gift: time. My daily life slows, the pace steadies out into the passage of light into dark into light again, and all that I want to accomplish suddenly seems achievable. Seemingly endless hours in which to write, to dream, to plan, to explore fill my mind and heart with giddiness.
I do struggle with winter, with the short days and the cold and the wind and the sheer difficulty of living in challenging weather conditions. Yet I also acknowledge the beauties of this time of year, the sheer freedoms it offers me as I allow myself the time and space needed to grow and stretch and expand more into myself and the world.
Peace to you, winter. Deep down, I love you.