Happy Ostara!!!!! I am sitting here watching it snow/rain on a peaceful Sunday morning. The animals have nodded off again, after getting up at our usual time, then going back to bed, then getting up again (I'm the only one who managed to stay awake this go-round). So, what I'm saying is that it is quiet. I can hear birds chattering on occasion and the faint snoring of the dog...
I have managed to be a very piss poor magical person and plan nothing for the first day of spring. Meh, I guess life has gotten the best part of my planning lately...
I think instead of anything formal I will just spend the day in quiet contemplation and mostly rest. Other than some minor chores I'm free to lounge, visit my horse and watch it spit snow one last time (fingers crossed). Winter is mourning itself now, even as it takes this last breath it is losing a grip on the world. Spring is giving birth to us all and our memories of how to live and grow and thrive are beginning to spark as we prepare to touch to warmth of the sun once more.
Blessings on this first day of renewal.
And with blessings some thoughts about spring from last year:
This is a really messy time of year, which gets me thinking about the birth of a season and the earth in general. I think that spring is possibly the most misunderstood season. Because people want it to be something it is not. Yes, they love the concept of winter ending and warmer weather and “life renewed” but they think in terms that aren’t accurate. People want spring to be like modern Easter. Full of brightly colored, clean eggs and new frilly clean dresses and enormous feasts fit for a very clean village.
That ain’t spring! Spring is fucking messy! It is muddy, wet, gooey and sometimes painful (if you count wiping up your floors four times a day from little dirty footprints as critters come and go). It is true birth. Birth of the creatures that we share the world with, the trees and plants that bud (and pollinate speaking of painful for many), the flowers that have struggled to the surface and finally break through, the cold blooded frogs, lizards and snakes that lie curled in the earth as they begin to come back to life…
These things aren’t sterile and crisp, clean white. They are bathed in the colors of struggle. The colors of blood and tears and grit. It takes an enormous amount of work to renew oneself and that rebirth doesn’t come without those things.
When I walk outside these mornings I am not greeted with promise. Promise was for Imbolc. Promise was the whispered words of those still underground telling me to hold on, just hold on a little longer… Promise has passed now and we have burst forth into what is real. What is real is that birth is all around us and every bit as messy as it should be.
I wonder how it is sometimes for things underground. Is it dark and cold and difficult to climb the staircase to the light? Do they claw and scratch their way forward? The roots and the steams and buds of spring flowers... Do they think about giving up? Do they cry because the journey is difficult only to burst through the muddy earth in triumph in the end? Or are they more like sleeping children, simply uncurling from a long and satisfying nap, lifting themselves to the sky and smiling at the sun?
I was working in the yard the other day and I saw an amazingly huge (and disgusting) nightcrawler making its way through the mud, going who knows where except maybe to find another place to dig back down into the ground... I pointed out to him that the robins were back so if he knew what was good for him he'd get his ass back to the abyss as fast as he could.
I saw the first robin on a snowy morning a couple of weeks ago. It had been warm a day or two prior and despite the "dangerous squall" going on around us this robin and at least a dozen others were in my front yard shoving their noses into the ground and serving as a beacon of hope for all of us tired, worn winter warriors.
Seems that spring has all but arrived and with it, some kind of cautious hope that life will begin to become less tedious, more warm, more welcoming to the sun coming up over the trees each morning. As personally I am still in the midst of struggle and uncertainty in life, I find a little bit of comfort in the shift. It is the "well at least" scenario. Well, at least it isn't snowing. Well, at least the days are getting longer. Well, at least the early bloomers are showing themselves...
Here is to hope for the rest of us, still ascending the staircase on our hands and knees at this point. Still seeking the light, knowing it is there somewhere and that we will reach it somehow, someday.
Here is to still holding onto hope even as we have to stop and rest, then shake ourselves awake and go a little further. Moment by moment, inch by inch, pulling ourselves forward without even really knowing why.
Here is to the stirring and the first scent of spring rain. We can smell it even underground and we follow it, thirsty for it, knowing it will nourish us and wash away the grime and heal the bruises of our lives.
At some point, on a robin's wing, we will be warmed by the light.