Winter solstice occurs this weekend in the northern hemisphere, marking the end of the descent into night. Winter officially begins and the light starts to gently elongate the day as darkness wanes. It’s nature’s time for deep rest and renewal. Wanting to stay somewhat connected, it feels like time for a dispatch from the snowy oasis.
Profound and sometimes painful lessons have taught me to heed the voice telling me it was time for a break after the Long Road Home tour. I’ve learned to put to rest those old stories telling me I couldn’t take time off. Ironically, this necessary period is not time off.
Just as I knew I was guided throughout the planning, preparation, and realization of an incredible journey, I’m equally certain that for an undefined time, it’s time for (relative) solitude, quiet, and stillness. It’s like arriving at an oasis after a long, exciting, albeit arduous trek. I’ll stay until it’s time to go.
Stillness doesn’t mean absence of action. We need look no further than nature for powerful, yet humble teachers, like the tiny hummingbird. They hover while gathering the sweetest nectar, appearing motionless as their wings flap from twelve to more than eighty times a second. While at the “oasis”, they need to recharge and build stamina for the next long journey. Running out of energy half way across the Gulf of Mexico while migrating is not an option.
Neither is running out of courage to continue their journey. They can’t look down and suddenly develop a fear of heights. Or gravel.
Admittedly, unplugging to a large degree means I’ve missed the usual contact with friends, especially with those from far away. I haven’t missed the distractions of social platforms and even keep radio time to a minimum. It’s amazing how much you can hear and see when you turn down the background noise and incessant sensory bombardment. Gradually, everything becomes clearer.
Recharging has meant focusing time and energy where it’s most needed. Decluttering, with gratitude, has opened nourishing space. Aside from having things in my closet and shelves that I don’t use, there are people in my community that are cold or homeless and could use a warm sweater or cozy flannelette sheets.
Furniture with unpleasant memories and heavy energy that I’ve carried for four decades has been sold or donated. One or two pieces may get replaced but it’s amazing to feel how much better I can breathe.
I’m grateful for the woods where I walk most days. Trees are good listeners. Nature reminds me to walk gently on the earth, use only what I need, and share my gifts.
Even Trudy’s in on the restorative action with major routine maintenance, a new chain, sprockets, and rear tire. We both need to be ready for whatever awaits when it’s time.
I’m looking forward to a few engagements, beginning with the Motorcycle Supershow in Toronto in January. For now, I’m settled in, taking my cues from nature’s consistent cycles, her teachers, and the voice of my heart.
However you celebrate the return of the Light, I wish you an abundance of joy, peace, and good health!