By Susie Ekberg
Q: Does it seem like everyone is really desperate for spring this year? It feels like it to me more this year than other year, for some reason.
A: Well, it’s a two-edged sandbag, as fears of another flood loom large in our minds. At the same time we’re anxious to see that old snow melt into the water that could CAUSE the flooding. Yes, I agree – I have noticed people all around the world longing for spring, but here’s my take (it’s important to have different viewpoints): fall’s the time things slow down – we harvest the fruits we’ve worked on throughout the summer. Winter’s the time everything goes to sleep – we turn inward and slow down, stay home, cozy up, become introspective and think about the deeper meaning of Life, cook stew. If you live in our part of the world, our magical introspective wintertime can last up to six months, so by the end of it, we’re like, “Wow – enough introspection, already – I want to go camping!” (yes, I’m aware there’s winter camping, but that’s probably just because we only get three months of summer camping, and those diehard campers get desperate!)
I love living in this part of the country because I’ve come to understand that the cycles, the seasons, are very central to my Being (although I could totally get used to Florida’s seasons, if given a chance). I can feel the shifts in my body, the slowing down, the speeding up, the going within, the manifesting time. But as I get more sensitive I can feel those changes even more profoundly and I think that’s what’s happening to others, as well.
This is what I know about cycles, and how we can use the seasons to symbolize what may be going on (and this current intense cycling has been going on since September): the first part of the cycle is like spring. Aren’t we always excited to see spring coming? It’s a time when we start out neutral, like tilled ground. The higher energies come into us like seeds that are planted. It’s very labor intensive, and leaves us tired and sweaty. We need to rest. But now those little seeds start working their magic, opening, growing, reaching for the sun. With a tremendous amount of effort and not a little bit of trust, they finally break through the earth’s crust to manifest in the world. Using the analogy of the garden being us, all of this internal work that’s going on affects us on the physical level. We begin to have strange dreams, interrupted sleep, and insomnia. We begin to feel low levels of chronic anxiety, fuzzy thinking, fuzzier memory lapses, blurred vision, and feelings of being overwhelmed.
Once the seeds start growing out of the ground things are a little easier all around. Those newer, more enlightened, more aware and conscious parts of ourselves now just need some TLC, air, light and water to help them (and subsequently US) grow. Our life provides that TLC, air, light and water because as we walk through our days we experience things that can help us learn new ways of being and doing things. That person that’s always critical? Well, here they come again, with that scowl on their face. Can you think of a new way of interacting with them? There’s your rain. Here comes your 10-year-old with that sweet smile on his face. What do you want to do? Just hug him close? There’s your sun. You have a free moment, so you sit down, close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Yup – there’s your air.
Then comes one of my favorite times of year, fall, because this is the time of harvesting, or reaping our rewards, of putting our new skills into practice and having them feed us and our lives. It’s the reward time, so to speak. It’s not as difficult as the planting, for sure, and is very fruitful (pun intended).
But after the long planting, growing, and harvesting, we need a rest. So voila, here comes winter to give everybody a rest (some get longer rests than others). The seeds go to sleep under the ground, animals hibernate, frogs dig into the mud. Everything goes quiet and hushed, slows down almost to a halt. This is the time when we reflect on our last harvest, and all of the beautiful flowers, fruits, vegetables and grains; and dream of the seeds we will plant next spring, known AND new. It makes everything else bearable, just dreaming of the warmth coming again, of the new growth, doesn’t it? Thinking of the color and the texture and the taste and the perfume of our crops. I know for myself that every year the lilacs bloom, I’m thinking it’s a major miracle. How is that even possible? How do the bushes know just what to do, and when? Just thinking about it, I can almost smell that sweet smell of lilac that tells me it’s almost summer.
Depending on how much work the other seasons have been, and how long winter has been for us (figuratively or for real), our souls know when it’s time to plant those new seeds of awareness, so that by the tail end of that wintertime in our lives, we become restless again, ready to get back to work, ready for the New.
To translate that again into our lives, we started having bigger “gardens” last September (more consciousness energy was coming into our lives). It’s like tending a one acre garden every year until one year someone says, “Oh, and by the way? That extra 40 acres is now yours to take care of as well. But here’s a new seed catalogue so you can order some new things.” That means more work all around, but also that the harvest will be greater.
Can’t you just feel that extra work, the extra load put on us, that something is coming your way, you just don’t know what yet? Well, if you can’t, I certainly can.
Sometimes I think it may be something scary (like the flood), and sometimes I think it may be something good (like a new job or move), but still, all of our thoughts are just seeds. We won’t know for sure until they are planted and start to come up, which will be sometime this summer, which coincides with when I know we’ll be well into the next cycle of all of this. In fact, at the end of May a lot of our anxieties and restlessness should be resolved as we get those soul seeds firmly planted.
On and on it goes – just like the seasons. It never stops, and we wouldn’t want it to stop. That means it’s the end of the game, and we’re not ready for that yet. Yes, we might like it to be easier, but you don’t build muscle by lightening your weights, do you? No – to get stronger and bigger you slowly add more weight and reps each workout, slowly building your body, or in keeping with our garden analogy, we keep adding an extra row to our garden each year, and add a few kinds of seeds. It’s the same thing spiritually, and last fall saw us getting about 20 pounds added to our spiritual weights that we’re working with, or 10 more rows to the garden – a bigger expansion than usual, for sure.
Easy? No. But doable? Yes, always, even if we complain and sweat and swear and get really bitchy about it all. Spring WILL come, and will bring many new beautiful seeds for us to plant in our lives, and with a lot of hard work we will have an amazing harvest this next fall, hopefully adding to our garden seed selection each year, asking for help when it’s needed, resting when we’re tired, but always strapping on our Crocs and sun hat to head out to our Garden again. It’s just what we do. Hang on – Spring IS coming, and from where I’m standing, the blooms are going to be unbelievable!
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