February 23, 2009

Ah, February

It's always been the longest month for me. Here in the Snowstorm Region, it's about 96 days long. By February, we've had months of snow, and the novelty of winter weather has worn off. We usually have a thaw somewhere in the middle of the month, a few hopeful days of warm weather that makes it feel like spring is coming.

And then, overnight, the temperatures drop, snow falls, and suddenly I'm outside again scraping ice off the windshield, and shivering because I didn't put on a hat, and driving ten miles per hour on treacherous roads. Nights in February are long because they are filled with demons, each emotional scar re-opening on the anniversary of that first sharp pain.

As I'm getting older, I am trying to make peace with February. I used to dig open the scars, pulling off the scabs, scratching into the memories. Now I leave them be. They are part of me. Like the silver stretch marks on my belly, they are a sign of growth. On dark nights, I just touch them gently, or massage oil into them.

Last week, when I talked to my friend Wild Hair about meditation, he suggested that after I meditate, I shouldn't just get up and rush away, but sit for a while with all that has been stirred up in the silence. I'm trying to open myself into the stillness of winter, into the spaces of February, into the richness of all that has happened in my past.

10 comments:

kathy a. said...

february is a pretty crappy month all around, i think. we don't even get snow here, but the days are not long enough yet. and in the school year, it is a stressful time.

it sounds as though you have a particular reason to hate the month. anniversaries of the horrible things are awful whenever they fall. your friend has some good advice. xoxox

ThirdCat said...

anniversaries do make things harder...I hope you are soon feeling warmer.

Rana said...

Perhaps if you thought of February not as the last grim days of dark winter, but the pause before the new growth of spring? It may seem like everything's dried up, cold and dead, but, really, it's just hibernating and gathering strength for the demands of spring. The season itself meditates, if that makes sense.

MonkeyPants said...

February is hard even for those of us without the snow or scars. I'd like to take Rana's suggestion and run with it, but to be honest, I'm tired of rain and ready for spring. Oh, boy, am I ready for spring.

YourFireAnt said...

Omigod! Don't do that! Keep moving. Keep moving.

T.

dance said...

Someone (and I guess it's me) needs to link the Dar Williams song February here.

Similar-ish sentiment (and you might like her music, too).

Wayfarer Scientista said...

february is always the longest of months despite the fact that the calendar would have us believe otherwise...but we're almost to March. Hang in there.

jo(e) said...

Dance: Thanks for the link. I first heard the song a few years ago when I blogging friend sent me it. It fits me exactly!

Anonymous said...

I always "rest" after meditation - just lie down for a few minutes - keep my eyes closed - it helps. Sorry there are scars. Love your writing!
hugs from PA
connie

bsouth said...

I'm sorry. It'll be March soon. I hope the scars will fade year on year.