I am a southern Californian, self-transplanted in central New York. During the 32 years I lived in San Diego, I was aware of seasonal change in a superficial way. Change clocks, it’s dark earlier, later, holidays are coming, it’s February, might need a sweater in the evening, that sort of thing.
There is a big difference in a 10 degree change in latitude. Summer is bright, the days are really long, with sunrise before 6am and sunset after 9pm. Spring, summer, early fall are times of frenetic outdoor energy, of soaking up sunshine and taking care of what can’t be done in the dark and snow.
The summer solstice is just about a month past, and I see and feel the difference in the light. It’s still mid summer, but already it’s darker later, and earlier, noticeably so, and the angle is different too. Less direct, the light has a softer, more diffuse quality.
I notice this perhaps because, despite my best efforts, I have not become a winter lover. I thought blythely upon moving here, having a few weeks of Colorado winter (ha!) under my belt, “I can do winter!” But winter here is a dark and deep time, and lately I’ve not been up to the task. I’ll get back to this, probably in mid-winter.
I notice this because my life has been really overfull these past months, and it’s a gift to be reminded in this way that life keeps going, whether I’m thriving or not. Looking for ways to change what is in my power to change is becomes important when I can’t ignore the passage of time.
Yesterday was slow, we were mostly home, focused on mundane tasks and just time together and time apart doing whatever we did. At the end of the day, the girls and I did yoga together in the yard, which dissolved into a silly dogpile game then turned gymnastics over me as I lay face down on the blanket. These are the moments I miss when I’m too busy, and I hold most dear when I’m calm and present. These simple moments.