... Another Jethro Tull favourite of mine! And yes it was blaring out as loud as I thought I could get away with three times in a row Solstice morning. It reminds me of my childhood and my Dad enthusiastically singing along in a comic spaced out droney kind of way, gooning about then regaling me in tales of Ian Anderson's hedonistic ways. The song resonated with me at the time, I loved the rhythm and the instrumentation, though I didn't know particularly why. Little did I know then that 20 years later I would be celebrating the Solstice myself.
Midwinter then. The light shyly begins to return as the nights reluctantly recede. In my garden spring already dares to dream - bulbs have timidly sent shoots up above ground reminding me it's not always going to be cold and bleak. I'm not sure my bears are tuned into the significance of this day yet, it's still very much about Christmas and presents for them. But they needed no encouragement to enjoy another fire at the tee pee in the garden today, sip sip sipping at warm apple juice.
The older they get the more involved and understanding they can become but in the meantime I can carry the torch. They will remember the day was special by the fact we had friends round for a feast, Daddy was home, mummy played weird 70's music over and over, which strangely she plays every year about the same time, and there was an eat all you want policy!
Balance eternally reigns supreme, more seasonal yin and yang I'm afraid. I envisaged an idyll of good cheer, good company and vintage spirit but that wasn't the reality. There certainly was the good ... solstice eve I saw it in with one dear friend who brought exciting news and a chance for me to get all evangelical on my ass over holistic pregnancy and birth. And dear friends were here today; her children and mine making magic reindeer food and decorating gingerbread together. The girls playing 'girlies' together, the boys being ... well, boys. My first attempt at a yule log wasn't too shabby ... if a bit small.
There was the bad, the challenging behaviour from Zander throughout. Over excitement compounded by over tiredness I suspect. He's pushed it before but not like this. I've felt all manor of emotions since - disappointment, shame, anger, embarrassment, sadness, failure - mostly self directed. No better time to be pushed to an edge though than one where light and dark change guard and we are given yet another chance to asses where we are, where those extensions of our hearts - our children, are and nurture more hope in plans for change and growth. That's what I like about the Celtic wheel of the year; not just New Year for resolutions and good intentions you get eight, yes eight, festival days on which to reassess and cultivate hope and change and that dances well with motherhood - it's a constant state of flux; what worked last week or yesterday may not work today or tomorrow but throughout, core values have to be rooted deep and strong as continuity here is what children need.
I feel a strong call of my place in the triple spiral ... mother. MOTHER. It's calling loud. And although yes - I am here - I had my babies, I carried them and now am raising them, I wonder if there might be some resistance loitering inside my being. It does seem to be what I'm destined to do - care for others in a motherly way - I've been doing it in various capacities for the last ten years and though I willingly wanted it all so much I sigh a little like 'what about me'. Ah so there is the resistance, hidden in that sigh. A paradox springs to mind; on one hand I don't think I'm completely giving myself to the role, not embraced it fully, there's still some more I could give. On the other hand if my sigh says what about me something is unbalanced. There is midwinter food for thought and in quieter moments I'll let my mind feast on that.
So there, I have my things to work on. But I'm giving much time to think of those whose darkness is so black and consuming. My friend who I know stands in the fire each and every day. My deepest wish is that light creeps back into her world again this year like a warm summer dawn. I wish that the ember of strength I know is deep in her heart begins to spark a little, sparks eventually licking out lighting some kindling in her soul.
Next stop: Christmas Eve - extended family warm up round at my house, more food more merriment. Then onwards into Christmas day: my sisters hosts at her cottage in the country and she's the best host ever! It will be the first year the kids have shared Christmas day with their cousins, I can't wait for their excitement to reach fever pitch, I think.
Oh and I'm learning new party tricks, balloon animals ...
I can only manage a butterfly and a sausage dog at the moment.
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