Yesterday was apparently a tough weather day in Chicago. I got several texts from usually upbeat friends who used the words “miserable”, “sucks, “don’t ever come back here.” It was a tough day for a friend whose mom’s six hour surgery lasted ten hours. I took a walk and talk with someone and it hailed hard on us.
Weather has that ability, to suck the life out of you.
It’s factual, too–barometric pressure and wind and cold temperatures are oppressive, our bodies have to fight with them. Whoever said you don’t get sick from being cold is a dope. No, you don’t get sick from being cold, but your system has to work to get your body temperature up, and that’s work it is not doing to fight off the germs we are constantly coming into contact with, even in LBC (Life before Covid.) When you are cold and your body is preoccupied , a cold slips in the back door. The two are most certainly correlated. (Thus the nickname!)
It affects our psyche too. There’s Vitamin D in the sunshine and all kinds of good stuff that happens to you when Mother Nature is shining on you.
The weather changes, and so do our moods. The conditions of our mind, as a teacher of mine explains it. The winds of spring and fall do usher in and facilitate change ~ outside and in. It feels like we are in the middle of that now. Each feeling and fighting with the winds of change in different ways–depending on our own unique experiences and interpretations. Keeping the faith has been essential. But what has that meant?
I’ll share below briefly what that has meant for me. But this post, this week, is meant to encourage you to spend a little time reflecting. In doing so–whether that is by thinking, talking to someone, writing, photographing – we acknowledge the moods of this unusual time.
For me, keeping the faith is honoring the rhythms and the forces of nature, and delighting in their beauty. It is also understanding human nature, my own nature, and the natural rhythms of things around me. I am remembering that I have been scared before, and am practicing focusing on the things that help me remain hopeful, and that feed my spirit. By doing so, I am able to keep faith.
Here’s a little nature story that I am meditating on today:
We got new bird feeders and were suddenly overrun by blackbirds. Blackbirds and magpies, both scavengers; not who you want bawking around you all day long. So I went to a super cool store in Boise and came away educated (and inundated) with ways to attract something else. The options were limited, though–I learned that once you have blackbirds it’s hard to attract much else. So- we put out bird houses and new thistle feeders for finches that larger birds can’t get their beaks in.
The response was great, and I was quite pleased about it. The chirping, the feeding frenzy, the soaring and excitement outside my window made me feel like quite the hero to “my” new little bird community. And then-bonk! That awful noise of a little bird nailing a plate glass window. The feathers left on the big sliding door confirmed a finch had hit it. I obviously felt badly about this casualty of my bird watching hobby. But then I glanced up and saw dozens of birds finding nourishment for their families there. Unfazed, not terribly sympathetic to their downed soldier~~bird brained, I suppose. And I realized, I’ll do the best I can, AND it’s not going to be perfect.
It’s not my world to perfectly control, or to even entertain the idea that I can. I’ve got to accept these laws of nature~~ good and bad, life and death, hope and challenge. And stick with the faith that there is Way more good than bad, and that is where I must focus my energy.
What are your reflections in and on these times–both natural and unnatural? And how are you keeping the faith?
Final Week the Lenten extension of “Clarity in 2020”:
- Let go, cleanse–our thoughts, our homes, our bodies. (5-18)
- Keep faith, and be true to our nature (5-19)
- Create- creative expression is the ultimate antidote to the slow death of stagnation (5-20)
- Observe-the dynamics at play in our lives and our selves~clearly, kindly, and consciously (5-21)
- Be thankful- we chose the lens we see life through. An attitude of gratitude contributes to how we experience life (5-22)
- Service- and the reminder in giving we receive (5-23)
- Remembering ; the lessons and silver linings of this time, and to stay present. (5-24)