Darkest Days

Nov 17, 2015

More questions than answers. Feeling in the dark. Fear and worry. Discomfort with “not knowing” how to move forward. And the only way through it is to go through it.  I am referring to Winter Solstice. According to author Carol McClelland in The Seasons of Change: Using Nature's Wisdom to Grow Through Life's Inevitable Ups and Downs, it is an integral phase, essential as we navigate the transitions in our lives. During my training to become certified as a certified Seasons of Change® Coach, I was relieved to learn that the season we are in may not be the same as nature’s season outside. The calendar and the actual season we experience outside in nature today may be wholly different than our “inner” season. Now, back to Winter Solstice.

The impact of recent world events remind me of the impact of Winter Solstice.  Refugees fleeing for their lives, from the darkness of war, not knowing the outcome of their quest.  Unspeakable horrors of terrorism unleashed again. Fears and worries, the mental boogeymen come to the forefront of my brain. Ugh.  I notice that I simply want to retreat, to hibernate, to nestle in by the warm fire for comfort and refuge.  When we are in Winter Solstice, it is not a time for action.  It is a time to reflect, to simply heed a lower level of physical or mental energy.  This may be especially tough for those of us who are so inclined to perpetual motion and thinking that we are worthless if not busy.

Winter solstice is the time to ask new questions, to gain new insights. Winter solstice is time to slow the frenzied pace, to listen into the space of quiet retreat, to be alert to the light. It is an opportunity to look to outside resources, to ask for help in order to spark new questions which lead to new insights.  

The gift in the darkness of Winter Solstice? The stars. It’s impossible to see the myriad brilliant stars without darkness. The metaphor of the shining star is perfect for navigating the darkest days of Winter Solstice. Look for the stars in your life, the sparks of new awareness that come out of the quiet.

For those of us who are not in Winter Solstice, we get to remember how we have came through those darkest days, with help from others or by resolving to stay the path even when it was chaotic or unclear. Winter Solstice is a turning point. In the darkest of times, there is the opportunity for human beings to be the light--to extend kindness, compassion and respect. To light the way by choosing love over fear. To be a bright light, thought by thought, belief by belief, by expecting the best and by demonstrating it. To be a bright star in the darkness in service of those who are navigating their own Winter Solstice.