Going with the Flow

best-new-year-photos

I felt an episode of SAD (Seasonal Affected Disorder) coming on last night. Okay, I admit it, I hate winter. Hey, what can I say? I’m a beach girl. And a Pisces. With a Scorpio Moon. Water is in my blood chart. Definitely not snow. Snow doesn’t count as water in my book. Scientifically it is water, yes I know, Einstein. Frozen water disagrees with me. Probably because I abhor being cold. But maybe more importantly, because frozen water does not move. It has lost its ability to flow.

Alas, on December 18, 2005, the gods saw fit to drag me off of the island of Oahu. Yes I was kicking and screaming. Yes my fingernail marks are still on the tarmac – right there for god & everyone to see. Now here I sit on the East Coast of the mainland freezing my ass off. Not a happy time for a beach girl. Not a happy time for someone who loved the year-round balmy-ness of a tropical island. Not a happy time for someone who needs flow.

The word ‘flow’ can be defined as move along or out steadily and continuously in a current or stream. Rivers and ocean waves flow, rivulets of rainwater flow, even people can flow, when they are moving in a crowd. Snow and ice, not so much. Well, until they start to melt. Then what is solid must follow the flow of water that carries it where it will, like ice floes.

Floes flow. 🙂

Of course, you already know these facts about water and flow. But I bet you did not know this definition of the word ‘flow’:

(of a solid) To undergo a permanent change of shape (deformation) under gradual stress, without melting.

How is it even possible for a solid to change shape without melting? I am trying to imagine the level of stress that would take and at the same time pondering the related meanings of ‘gradual’ (taking place or progressing slowly or by degrees) and ‘deformation’ (the action or process of changing in shape or distorting, especially through the application of pressure). We have all seen the results of abrupt pressure on a solid: SPLAT! Perhaps we have even felt it, like the last time I hit my pinky toe on the bed post. Yeah, ouchie.

For me winter feels like a time when the flow of life stops, but is that really accurate? (For a great look at the dark of winter check out this post by my friend Kelsey!) Where I live there are four distinct seasons of the year, winter, spring, summer, and fall. During three of them, I can feel the flow of time as it passes. Somehow in winter I get the feeling of being stuck, like my feet are locked in ice and the flow has stopped. Time stops for no man (or woman, as the case may be), yet in winter I begin to gain a deeper understanding of why the people of ancient times followed the moon cycles and the movement of the stars rather than the weather. When the frozen darkness comes it helps to see that things are still flowing.

For the past few years I have been learning to flow differently than I did for the majority of my life. From a very young age I followed Christian dogma and the flow of my life was largely determined by weekly church services, band practice, and various holidays like Christmas, Easter, and others. Having left that system behind, I seek new ways to flow through my life.

My focus has zoomed in on Yoga, the moon cycles, and the eight pagan festivals of the year. Through yoga I feel the flow of my body on a daily basis. Sometimes the gradual pressure of a difficult asana reshapes me physically. The moon cycles provide a bi-monthly flow, a time to meditate on intentional living (new moon) and gratitude (full moon). These meditations reshape me spiritually. The pagan festivals help me to feel my connectedness to the flow of change that the earth experiences on a yearly basis.

A full moon in Cancer occurred today at 5:34 a.m. Cancer is a cardinal water sign. Cardinal signs initiate – they are the harbingers of new things and new beginnings. Water signs are all about intuition, spirituality, emotions, and inspiration. It is interesting to me that this Cancer full moon occurred in the first month of 2017, a 10 year. In numerology, 10 is the number of both completion and new beginnings. Certainly we can see how this is playing out politically, but perhaps there are things in your life that have reached their end point as well. Maybe a new beginning that you have waited a long time for is coming to you.

I hope that 2017 brings us all many welcome endings, many happy new beginnings, and a deeper understanding of the flow of life. When the gradual pressure comes, may it work to reshape you into the person you hope to be.

What is your favorite season of the year? Do you ever feel stuck? By what? How do you get yourself back into the flow when it happens? Have you ever felt like a gradual pressure of some kind changed you into a different person? Please share – I would love to hear your story!
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