I appreciate the unadorned. I always have: plain M&Ms, original Oreos, chocolate with no nuts, pizza with one topping, two at most. I like simple clothes in dark, solid colors; shape is more important to me than pattern or appliqué. I'm very clear on what I like and what I don't like, and usually what I like errs on the side of unfussy.
You would think I'd like the simplicity of the cold. The trees are certainly unadorned. So are the flower beds. The sky is generally clear and stark. Everything unnecessary is eliminated. Everything and everyone moves inside. But winter makes me feel mostly sad. It's always felt like wasted time, my whole life. I'm trying not to waste it anymore.
Years with 8 in them have always been hard for me. Well, 8 was fine, as far as I can recall. But 18 -- off to college, a breakup with my first boyfriend. Then 28: were we getting married, or not? At 38, there was a rupture with a good friend over my own weakness and selfishness. By itself, 48 hasn't been awful, but the last five years or so have brought a lot of turmoil and contraction. I'm ready for expansion now.
My favorite number is 9. I've always associated it with the color purple, also my favorite. So, 2019. I'll turn 49 in July. It holds promise.
I found an article about letting go. I've been reading it at least once a day, and I will continue to until I feel it in my bones. It says: "The most precious, important thing that you have in your life is your energy." And: "The foremost important thing you can do...is to protect your energy more fiercely than anything else. Make your life a safe haven in which only people that can care and listen and connect are allowed." Also: "Stop showing up for people who are indifferent about your presence. Stop prioritizing people who make you an option."
A dear friend posted about how, last year at this time, she wrote on strips of paper the things she wanted more of in her life, and then she burned the paper. I have some "wish paper" that was given to me as a gift, years ago. It sits on my puja table with other amulets and baubles that mean something to me. I think I will use it to write the names of things to let go of, instead, and burn that.
I'm standing on a threshold, one I've sidled up to many times in the last few years and always backed away from. Now I'm feeling like I'm going to cross, pass through.
I've been good at reopening wounds. Picking at the scabs. Now I'm letting them form, tending to them so that the injuries beneath can start to heal.
It's strange to feel sad and hopeful together. Well, not so strange. It's a bittersweet feeling, one I often feel at dusk, and it's not entirely without pleasure. But it's a little bit scary, too.
The article says: "Wait in the darkness, for just a little bit."
The solstice is on its way, and then winter. I will use this one well.