“Slow down…. Way down. Take a picture of this moment. Capture it in time…”
This was said once by our incredible teacher and mentor, Dianne Connelly. I am not sure if it is a direct quote from her or if she was quoting someone else, as she would so fluidly and eloquently fill her teachings with poems and writings she had committed to memory. A Google search turned up nothing , so this one may be hers. Regardless, it stopped me in my tracks. The first time I met Dianne I was rushing quickly down the halls to be sure that I got to class in time. She stopped me dead in the hall, looked me in the eyes to say hello, and told me to slow down. She said it in a way that had so much more meaning than just the words that were said.
I have always been one to rush through life. I received my license the day of my 16thbirthday and bought a car with the money I had saved from working since I was only 12 or 13 years old. I decided to become a nurse and was a RN by the time I was 20. I bought my first house one month after my 22ndbirthday. I wanted to grow up fast and be “successful” quickly without pondering what that really meant. There were times that I would slow down. Some would be by choice, sitting at the peak of a mountain, looking out over the Rocky Mountains or swimming through the perfect water at the lake in New York. Other times were forced. A death or maybe a heartbreak.
Still, it wasn’t until the moment that I heard her say this that I truly stopped to realize how much I might miss by rushing through life. And where was I even going? The spring is here and with it a burst of birth and energy. As we gear up for spring though we must pay respect to the winter. The winter is a time of quiet, reflection, wisdom, faith and courage. It is the quiet outdoors after a snowstorm, or the stillness of an iced over lake. The winter forces us to look within. The timing and length of the current Mercury retrograde is keeping us in this yin state for longer than we might like, keeping the mirror turned towards us. Instead of being in resistance we can use this time to take a breath, slow down and stay in the moment, embracing whatever might show up for us. Resistance can lead to frustration and muddled communication.
It is easy to forget that are nature. We might have that wonderful (and pesky at times) neocortex, but we are still mammals. Living in line with nature can become one of the most important things that we can do for our health. Soon it will be time to for hikes, barbecues and the yang rising of the spring and summer. For now, we can savor the gifts of winter and provide ourselves a little more space and time to capture the moment.
Photo Credit: Patrice Johns