The Winter Solstice, this dormant season’s official start, occurs in three days. It marks on the calendar the longest night of the year. It is an ancient holiday that precedes a newer holiday by four days – one that dominates the season for a variety reasons. But Christmas and Winter Solstice are similar in an essential way; it is a time of hopeful waiting and a celebration of both what is, and what will be.
For people whose geography allows them to experience all four seasons, we are about to enter into literally dark, cold days. We are, however, also comforted by both the recent bounty of Autumn and the promise of Spring. We rejoice, and we wait.
I am both rejoicing over and waiting on my writing; I’m about to be published AGAIN. A few months back I wrote in this post about being published twice in one week and wondered when the trifecta would hit. Several weeks later, a tiny paragraph in our local daily newspaper called for original Christmas fiction submissions, for publication on Christmas Day. Since I had a Christmas-themed short story sitting in a drawer, I dug it out, polished it up, and sent it in. Then, I was sick for a month with the cold that kept on giving.
This week I received word that my short story has been chosen for Christmas Day publication in our widely circulated daily newspaper. The story itself is a secret until you can see it in print on Christmas. So, we all wait for what will be, while I rejoice for what is.
My work towards a life of writing has been a long period of study, creative inspirations, and hours of labor at the laptop. When I see my essays, articles and, soon, a short story published, it is a moment of exultation; I can do it. My goal is attainable.
Yet there is a whole winter to endure. And winter can be an unforgiving season for me. I lay dormant along with the earth, dreaming, like a wildflower seed, of the warmth of spring and what I will do when I can put all of my energy into blooming. There is no shortcut in this cycle that gives each season it’s turn.
Until then, we celebrate what we have now – the bounty that is life itself and a promise of brightening days ahead!