Surrendering to The Seasons of Life
I have been grieving the comforts of my home in Australia this past month. I know it’s crazy right? I am in France! A place that represents my ‘personal legend’ (as in Paulo Coelho’s novel ‘The Alchemist’). It’s taken me 43 years to get here and yet part of me feels disappointed.
Why is that so? I can only narrow this disappointment I feel down to the resistance of the seasons of life. I’ve felt increasingly isolated as this village of Bonnieux that I love so much shuts down for the winter and settles into its annual quietness. I’ve been resisting this. I want to see activity, people, things happening … community.
Or, am I simply resisting the seasons of life? The natural ebb and flow of all that is? Am I so accustomed to being switched ‘on’ and caught up in perpetual activity that stillness causes me too much discomfort? This was my ‘aha moment’ today when Johann Pepin of Les Pastras (where Jon and I went truffle hunting today) expressed his love for this quiet season. A time of focussing inward, a season where activity minimises, and a time where the focus is on family.
This observation of the seasons has been both fascinating and confronting. It’s made me realise how disconnected I have really been with nature and even the food that I eat. As I look around this beautiful countryside there is a special kind of beauty. The tree’s are all shades of yellow and orange. There is a richness and texture of Autumn and Winter that the other seasons do not share. All this beauty, but there is no bounty. Nothing much grows in this seasons. It’s a time of consolidation. And the tree’s will soon all be laid bare as a reminder of this.
Where I have been living in Australia the seasons come and go without any visual queues. The temperatures change yes, but everything looks the same. Summer fruits and vegetables are still abundant in the supermarkets in the middle of winter and nothing ever slows down. Perhaps this is part of the reason I am here, to learn about the seasons of life. To go with them rather than against them. To stay, to rest …. rather than ‘doing’ and the constant need to be productive.
I sense a need to let go of some of what I have known and to surrender to where it is I am going … wherever that is.