Defrosting: A Seasonal Shift Back to Self

Are you defrosting?

Here in New England we know Winter arrives when the ground freezes and we know Spring is close when it begins to defrost. A trickle of water begins and quickly the ground is saturated with the moisture it held all Winter. Sopping and seemingly stagnant, moments of movement begin below the surface. The water begins to flow but it is cold as ice and unrelenting in its desired path.

I find that the sunnier, warmer, longer days also have me defrosting. My rigid Winter state is starting to soften and I can feel a loosening in my body. I spent much of this Winter anticipating change and working to prepare myself for what is to come. Much like the frozen ground, I knew what my timeline was but with definite dates, I too was frozen. Now with the familiar song of birds beginning to call, I want to run and flow but am finding myself on soggy ground.

If you’ve ever stepped in a puddle during a New England thaw then you know the misery of saturated frozen sneakers. Water pools under your toes and socks have never felt more disgusting than squishing between your feet and waterlogged sneakers. It’s gross. It’s cold, and uncomfortable, and feels like an oncoming illness. As a kid it may have been playful but as an adult it’s a slap in the face. Are my shoes ruined? Do I have dry socks? Did anyone see me do that???

We don’t pause in the unpleasant, the inconvenient, the unplanned. We don’t want to feel uncomfortable or worse yet, vulnerable. We refuse moments of recalibration, realignment, and reckoning.

The continued cold nights and snowflakes in the sunshine remind us that it is work to move away from being cold and harsh. Spring brings a new promise of growth but we must first wait for the ground to thaw before we can even begin to plant seeds. We plan for the harvest but not the seeds who don’t make it. The ones with root rot, the ones eaten by garden friends, or the ones we forget about on a hot day.

While I am very much feeling the pull to Spring, I must recognize it’s not fully here yet. I need to stretch slowly and bring myself back to a place of flow before any real movement can transpire. I need to steady myself in the mud before I can walk on dry land. I need to allow the nights to shorten before I can truly appreciate the sunshine. Yes, I’m defrosting from this Winter, and my coming flow will be grand.

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