Winter is definitely a time of hibernation for me. I eat enough to sustain a bear and I don’t want to do anything but curl up under a pile of warm, cozy blankets and sleep and hide away from the cold. It’s an introspective, internal time when being social sometimes feels forced and the world sometimes feels gray and bleak.
In the past I have tried to rouse myself, like the bear, come springtime. To rise up and rejoin the world but regardless of the season I would find myself retreating again. Not just inwards but away from – everything. Far more turtle-like than bear-like really. I would enjoy basking in the sun but was quick to hideaway under my shell at the first sign of danger.
This spring everything feels different. I am acutely aware of the change in the seasons, the longer days, the warmth of the sun, the blooming buds and greening grass. But it’s much, much more than that – I feel an emergent energy – the buzzing of potential. I’m almost giddy with it! I feel connected with the world and straight up drunk on love for it.
Much like the little sprouts determinedly poking through the dirt I feel vulnerable and tender but instead of being wrapped up in fear about all the things that might smash me and stunt my growth, I feel excited for the possibility of what might become of me.
I’ve been fighting for this feeling for awhile now – clawing at it– and inadvertently destroying it at the moment that I was close to achieving it. So I stopped fighting. It looked a little bit like giving up. It felt a bit like it as well. But it wasn’t. It took a long time, a lot of clenching and flinching and reflexive tightening but I finally relaxed into it. And as soon as I did, the very instant that I let go, the feeling of freedom that I had been struggling so hard find, flooded through me.
I feel alive with –confidence. That ever allusive sense of self-confidence which I’ve mistakenly been trying to find from others was a gift that only I could give myself. There’s a quote that has resonated with me for awhile now, beckoning me to understand it and I’m finally there. I’ve let go of the fear and the doubt and returned to love.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously
give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.
~ Marianne Williamson