Apologies for inactivity on here. Was on a camp last week, and haven't been doing great since then. But thought I'd share a little story from New Year's Day with you.
I have a little tradition with the New Year where I get up to watch the first sunrise of the year. I'll note that I do this instead of watching the fireworks and staying up until midnight. I don't really enjoy fireworks that much. Last year, I did this at Pulpit Rock Lookout, following a week-long retreat, on a morning that was super foggy/misty, and you really couldn't see the sunrise at all. It was rather a good indicator of that year - last year was a winter year for me. It was a time when things were stripped away, I went back to the basics, and it took me a while to get back into things. When I had a lot of time on my hands, was retreating and resting a lot, and I often felt a bit lost or broken (more so than usual). That's winter for you.
This year, though, it was a bit different. I drove up there on New Years' Eve, and just slept in the car. When I went up, it was super misty/foggy, terrible visibility. I set my alarm so that I would be up before the sun was visible, and it really wasn't illuminating the sky much at all. I think I ended up getting to the lookout about an hour before the sunrise proper. And it was super clear, absolutely beautiful. I got to watch the whole gradual lightening of the sky over the course of that time, and eventually seeing the first spots of the sun peeking over the horizon.
To me, that was a real indication of the difference between last year and this year. Last year was winter; this year is spring. New life, new beginnings, new growth. That's what I'm holding to, though it might take a while for me to see that coming to fruition. But spring has always been my favourite.
For most of the time, I was there by myself. Shortly before the sunrise proper, another guy came along - a photographer, who set up and started to take some photos. Another fifteen or twenty minutes later, when the sun was pretty much completely clear of the horizon and I was about to leave, another group arrived.
And I found that really interesting. Because evidently, they were there for the same reason as me - to see the sunrise. But they hadn't really seen it at all. They were just seeing the aftermath. And yeah, it looked pretty cool. But it was nothing compared to the slow and grand reveal of the sun over the horizon that I'd been watching for that hour.
For me, I guess, it's another demonstration that many people are only half-way in. They want to do something cool, see something great, make a difference - but not if it's too hard. Not if it means sacrifice, or difficulty, and certainly not if it means waiting!
I think one of the biggest things that this last year has taught me is patience. It's a long, and hard lesson to learn; but it's one of the most important. Particularly in today's world. And it's one that I'm very much still learning, and I'm still not very good at sometimes (read: when it comes to relationships) - but I'm getting there. Slowly.