I’m noticing a touch of melancholy, infused with joy and excitement for the winter holidays this time of year. Anyone else? The darkness settles all around and inside of us like an uninvited guest that stays too long. The cold, well, it bites. SARS-CoV-2 continues to instill fear and threatens to keep us in isolation. Makes you long for flu season, doesn’t it?
But the human spirit… that’s what saves us, right? It’s the spirit that lights the candles and hangs the twinkling lights so the darkness is more bearable, helps us to see what we cannot see in broad daylight, shines a little light on the soul. The cold invites us to wear our soft, warm sweaters, wooley socks and sit close enough to share a blanket. And while covid has divided and made us fearful, crushed the life out of many, it has also allowed us to demonstrate courage and generosity for those hardest hit by it’s deadly spikes.
So, I’m OK with the melancholy for now. It seems the right response to darkness, cold, fear and isolation. I will light my candles and sometimes sit quietly in the glow of a tiny flame that illumines my heart. But my intrepid spirit will have me dancing to Regae and Zydeco, bundling up for a hike in Rock Creek, and cooking soups for my friends and family.
There’s room for all of it, the joy, melancholy, excitement, fear, outrage… Like Rumi says,
“Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows, who violently sweep your house empty of its furniture. Still, treat each guest honorably. He may be clearing you out for some new delight.”
Life just isn’t complete without the ups and downs of ALL the emotions. We just need to make sure to keep feeding our spirit, the one who’s really in charge.
What feeds your spirit?