It is about this time, as we close in on February, that the sadness creeps in. You feel it sitting on you as you sleep, and when you wake up it settles back in your bones. It’s an extra weight on you as you walk, never getting lighter until you choose to wear it, welcome it to get cozy and stay, as you know it will linger until spring. There is no other way but to accept it. Today as I was out walking at 7 a.m., the sun was just rising, a crack of gold under the pearlescent gray clouds coating the sky. Feeling that wash of sadness, I reminded myself that the days are getting longer. I held onto that slippery filament of hope, as I reminded myself what to do: be focused, patient, make and surround yourself with art, and keep on walking.
I am fascinated by the pagan holiday of Imbolc, which is the halfway point between the winter solstice and vernal equinox. This year it falls on February 2, this Sunday. I didn’t think of it until I started writing this, and then I remembered: ah, yes, we are half way to spring. That’s why I have that feeling of heaviness. We are right in the middle of it. Even walking has turned into a different thing–one more of duty than discovery. My walks are averaging 3 to 4 miles a day, and when I finish them I’m surprised I’ve walked so much. They are cold and serious trudges, but I am always the better for them. So wrap yourself up and get out there.