This morning when I drove to work it was 7 degrees. Even after twenty-seven New England winters, it still blows my mind that it can get this cold (and colder). There are a bunch of memes in my Facebook feed about why I live in a place where the air hurts my face. I have to agree. Complaining about the weather is a true passion here. We complain about the heat and humidity in the summer, the rain and fog during spring mud season, and the cold raw winds and rain of late fall. There is almost always something to complain about when it comes to New England weather.
Although my tendency is to focus on what I don’t like, it is a good practice to take a moment and focus on the things I do love about this time of year. I love the fire, the smell of the wood smoke, the logs stacked neatly on the porch ready for our use. I love colorful scarves that wrap around my neck and shoulders to keep the piercing wind and cold at bay. I love the hush that comes after a snow storm, when a thick blanket of white covers the landscape. I love the crunching sound as warm boots leave footprints in the snow.
After the hustle of Christmas, the New Year gives way to a slower simpler pace. The Christmas decorations are put away, leaving a barrenness to the house that seems right. Winter here pushes me indoors. At times, I can feel trapped but mostly I love the chance to curl up with a good book, cook a slow meal, and lean into solitude. This is a season of waiting, a turn inward. It feels right to slow down, to sit with my thoughts. To take a deep breath and rest.
I am making it a point to appreciate the rhythm of this season. I want to find little things to enjoy, to relish, rather than wishing away such a huge part of my year. Winter always comes, sometimes with more ferocity than I like, but it also always goes. This season of rest and waiting will eventually give way to new life of spring. But not yet. I want to find the treasures of this season, to appreciate their value, and to celebrate this moment.
How are you leaning into this season?