It snowed over break! Almost just the right amount... it was slippery getting up the hill, but we made it. I'm delighted to say we're back to classic PNW drizzle & drips. I worked through the break so didn't get as much time to do year-end wrap ups and reflection like I like to do, which left me trying to cram a bunch of stuff in the night before I went back to work.
We have survived the longest night of the year! And now the days will begin to lengthen again. Although honestly, it never seems like the light comes back until it's a little closer to the equinox... but still and regardless -- it's the season of hibernation and the tiny seeds of light will grow, but first they need to nestle in the heart and incubate. But they will grow!
It is a dark and heavy time of year, the sun is so much further down on the horizon at these latitudes, darkness comes early and leaves later as well. Where in your life do you need Isis to shine a light into the corners of your darkness? The best way to clear out the darkness after all is to shine light into it. As it is said, ‘tis better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.
Authenticity. Being. Being true to "who you are." These are ideas I've struggled with. Like - what does that even mean, "to be authentic," "to be yourself?" Which self? In which context?
The holidays are upon us. This year, for the first year in a long time, I will be working through the holidays with the exception of the officially mandated days off. I may, however, depending on how many people go into the office that last week of the year, just work from home that week. That remains to be seen...
Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and yours! The past couple years I've done a gratitude reflection for each day in November. I didn't do that this year, but I remain grateful for all of the wonderful people in my life, and countless other things.
We're getting our first big windstorms of the season, so the road up to our house is covered in fir needles and maple leaves and branches of various sizes. You almost can't see the actual road under all of it. Eventually the road sweeper truck will come by and clean it all up, but until then it's very... rustic...
The weather is turning and I am trying to keep finding my motivation to go out in the chill and blustery... Motivation is... somewhat reduced. But I do try to take the opportunity to take smaller more frequent excursions, whether it's intentionally scheduling a mtg in a different building, or just walking with someone ostensibly to discuss some matter at hand... that could probably wait, but walk... :D
This is THE LONG AWAITED season in our house. We barely managed to hold out until September this year... as is often the case... before putting up our decorations. This is the season of mushrooms and monsters and all the things that roam and rove in the night - cats and bats and flickering pumpkins that think everything is hilarious...
I keep getting lost in the sound of the rain. Rain and change and change and rain and the only thing that can be done is to identify the next small step in the right direction and just keep on moving. Which is pretty much always the case after all things are always changing and there is always only the eternal now.
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I spoon fed her all weekend because she just didn't want to eat. There is a song that goes with spoon feeding a cat and apparently now I sing it absentmindedly to myself when I'm deep in concentration - I caught myself singing it to myself when I was down in the weeds of a taxonomy question today. Monday I took her to the vet because not eating is problematic for cats, and spoon feeding a cat is problematic for me in terms of time management and interest level. Even with a song to sing while I do it. It's boring and sort of annoying for everyone involved.
I think animals, and probably plants and mycelia, all have way more emotional lives than we give them credit for. I get not anthropomorphizing things (not that it stops me), but bonding and pining is bonding and pining...
I'm sure I heard this idea from elsewhere, and I can't remember where. I think about it a lot. Having kids is like wearing your heart on your sleeve. And even more than wearing your heart on your sleeve, it's like setting your heart free to wander out into the world. The embodied knowledge of what it's like to send the hearts of your heart out into the world... Oof. It's a big thing.
M2 is reading parts of Edith Hamilton's Mythology, specifically tonight on the creation myths of the Greeks. This jumped out... "Love created Light with its companion, Radiant Day... With the coming of love and light it seemed natural that the earth also should appear." There. *Love* created the world. Best creation story ever.
I kind of just want to leave this whole newsletter with that thought. Love created the world.
But this is the power of stories.
As I was flipping through my cards looking for something to send to a friend (hey, I have good intentions!), I found a card that was decorated with the quote, "Wonder is the beginning of wisdom. --Socrates." Which then gave me occasion to wonder about that, but without that spark of wonder, that leads to curiosity, which leads you to wanting to learn more... of course, how else would you progress to wisdom?
Every day that I cross the bridge from one side of the lake to the other, I wonder if this is what it was like to live in industrial era London, where the fog, as often as not, was mixed with horrible pollution. At least for us, it's supposed to clear up with a weather change in a couple days.