Monday Words: Welcoming Winter
I didn’t realize just how much I have missed winter and the snow. How much I have missed the quiet of the winter. How much I have missed the chill of these days. There is a silence that happens during this season that is calming and eery and absolutely magical all in the same breath. I forgot just how important this season is to who I am. I realized that winter has long been a part of my chemical makeup as a native Northern Michigander. When I was younger I remember walking most of the school year to school between snow banks only seeing the street when passing a driveway. I remember playing on the playground in snow storms. In fact, I was born in a snow storm. The snow has always been a part of my story.
This weekend we had our first snow of the winter and our first since living back in Michigan. The years we spent in the south I didn’t hate the warmer days we had in the winter, but it always felt unsettled in my soul. I would desire and long for the feeling of stillness and hibernation that can only come when you live in a drastically seasonal climate. Some people love the warmth of the sun continually. Some enjoy the consistency of warm days, but I realized today as we drove home and as we got our Christmas tree just how much I missed the snow and how important it is for me to have a winter.
Winter is a season of hibernating
It is a season of settling in and getting snug
We get warm by fires
We gather closer
We embrace the darker days by snuggling in earlier to bed
We learn resilience during this season as we fight the cold and the elements to do every day tasks
It is a time to hunker down and focus on what couldn’t be focused on the rest of the year
It is the time in the year to renew our spirits
The thing I realized as the snow coated our shoulders and stuck to our eyelashes as we picked our tree today was that winter is the calm in the storm of the year. As an introvert, I need time to myself in the quiet and stillness each day to be my best self. I see that winter is nature’s way of reminding us to stop, reset, and refocus after a year of doing. This concept is something I grew up with and helped make me who I am. Winter for many is hard, and it isn’t easy for me either, but realizing this is our time to warm our souls and stoke our own internal flames for the coming year has made me realize just how important winter is to our years.
This was our weekend to welcome winter with open arms. Watching the snow whirl around as we listened to Christmas carols and prepared our home to welcome in our tree and a fire blazing in the fireplace, I felt that winter had arrived officially and now was the time to begin hibernating and nesting in preparation to enjoy this quiet season that by April will feel like a guest who has overstayed their welcome.
I hope that when April surfaces with the hope of everything new and fresh that I will feel rested from this season and ready for what the rest of the year holds. My goal as we set out embracing a seasonal life is to learn to love each season and to find their deep value in our life. Learning them, embracing them, and celebrating them for all that they are. Life is too precious to wish any of these seasons away or wish one lasted longer than another. All are important and are a part of the balance of a year and a lifetime.