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From Autumn to Winter

Boy, did I sign up for a rollercoaster ride or what? When I spoke about “living Autumn,” I somehow did not anticipate the serious amount of shedding that this journey would require of me. I am like a twig poking out of a field of snow, exposed and bare. I will spare you the minutiae but Autumn was not playing around.

Autumn was hot, then cold, then wet, then dry, then sunny, then cold and dry, wet and hot, cold wet, hot dry, stormy, windy, sunny then cloudy again. Absolutely all over the place, never staying the same for very long. Up, down, left, right. The result? Naked trees and a stripped down me.

The excess has gone and the core of things has been revealed. It’s humbling. What is left feels clarified and maybe even a little tempered. And I’m certain the transformation is not complete — though, will it ever? And would I even want it to? If I’m completely honest, yes. I’d like to “be done” for a little while. I wonder, though, if that isn’t the natural next step for those living within the cycles of nature.

As I look out my window, the gnarly fingers of my bare lilac tree reach out across a light grey sky. Remnants of white from this morning’s light snow intermingle with the sticky dark mud of my unpaved driveway. What comes next?

Winter. The time of rest, focusing inward, nutrient dense roots. The bustle of day naturally wanes as the sun spends less time shining. We’re forced to settle down in early evening, and stay settled until late morning, allowing for an easier glimpse of sunrise. The words that come to mind for me are gratefulness, closeness, reflection, and strength.

For winter, my plans are to leave social media and blissfully hibernate in a cave. I aim to focus on my own studies and really solidify good health habits. To intentionally do less with those outside of my sphere, and therefore be more intentional with those within it. Overall, I expect nothing less than a series of lessons, as HaShem sees fit. All on theme, I think. Either way, we will find out.

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