"Any arbitrary turn along the way and I would be elsewhere; I would be different." ~ Frances Mayes

After losing 112 pounds in almost a year and a half, I have come to realize how very much I was missing. I may be Late to the Party, but I am doing my best to catch up in my own unique way!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

February Word of the Month

Oh, my gosh, am I behind!  We are a week plus a day into the month of February and I have not announced this month's word!  I offer as an excuse the legislative session here at the Capitol which becomes all-consuming, all-life encompassing, taxing and draining to both body and brain.  Suffice it to say that I am running behind schedule.

We have come to the doldrums of winter.  The frivolity of the Christmas holidays are a distant memory and most New Year's resolutions have been broken, forgotten, or at best, compromised.  Unless we are fortunate to live in a more temperate climate, the middle of February finds us weary of cold and ice and snow, of rain and wind, gloomy days and long frozen nights.  The Super Bowl hype is over and the Ground Hog has either seen his shadow or not.  Either way, Punxsutawney Phil, or General Lee for us in the South, has retired back to his reclusive hole for another year. It is still a long time until Easter or the Equinox, which ever comes first this year, and the heralding of Spring.  Here at the Capitol, Session seems to stretch out forever and we count down the forty legislative days S-L-O-W-L-Y.  April seems an awful long time away.  Nature is asleep, marking time before the great thaw and the gradual awakening that accompanies it.

Ambivalence is a wonderful tune to dance to. It has a rhythm all its own. ~ Erica Jong

 All in all, I can honestly say that this time of year has its own benefits.  There isn't too much to think about except work and what the weatherman is predicting for the upcoming two or three days to come.  It is too cold, too dreary, too dark to do much more than go home at the end of the work day, eat supper, engage in mindless television or quiet reading, and go to bed for a few hours of desperately needed rest before going through it all over again the next day.  One day looks like the one before and the one before that, similar to the storyline of the movie Groundhog Day, a personal fave, I have to say.  Yes, it can be boring, but for all its downfalls, the routine of this time of year is a rhythm that doesn't require much thought other than going through the rote motions. And in that simplicity, there is a comfort, a cadence of life, if you will.  That, my friends, is the February Word of the Month - CADENCE.

My formula for living is quite simple. I get up in the morning and I go to bed at night. In between, I occupy myself as best I can.
-- Cary Grant

The cadence of Winter is understated.  This season can be a respite for our bodies, as well as our souls. We should take Nature's example and hibernate, if not literally, then figuratively. We need, actually crave, at times a slower life and this is the time to heed that call.  Fall into the rhythm of your life, embrace the cadence.  The trick is to not fight it, accept that it is perfectly all right to slow down.  Give yourself permission to start a jigsaw puzzle and take weeks to finish it.  Pick up a book that you have long wanted to read but couldn't find time to devote during the three busier seasons.

Take a Sunday afternoon nap by the fire or sleep late on Saturday under the electric blanket.  Whatever duties call will be there when you awake.

Renew an old friendship. Write a letter rather than a quick email. Plan a Saturday night supper of filling stew, fresh bread, warm brownies.  Learn to knit, start an artistic journal or - here's an idea - a blog!

A hot, soaking bath with candles aglow is the perfect "me" time.  This may take some thought and a constant reminder to ourselves to accept our attempt to find a less hectic rhythm and a concentrated effort to ratchet it down a notch or two.

In conforming to Winter's slower cadence, you can actually create new experiences or enjoy pleasures you have reluctantly put aside.  Listen to your inner cadence of the heart and soul and not the cadence we think we must march to all year.  Why rush to the cadence of a marathon race when the sway of a slow waltz is more satisfying?

"All nature works, and then rests; works and rests.  I caught its rhythm and worked and rested with it.  When I felt that inertia stealing over me, I rested; and while resting, my power recuperated - the tide rose in me." ~ Elizabeth Towne, 1904

 If you have found a slower cadence in the past few weeks, please share with me and my readers what you have done to make that change.  I would love to hear from you!  Oh, and don't forget the 50 followers chocolate giveaway!


  1. I like your post. It's a really good reminder to me to take each day and enjoy every minute of it! I'm always in a rush, and I never take or have the time to smell the roses...
    Thank you for stopping by my blog and leaving me a comment. Good luck!

  2. Oh, a bath by candle light sounds heavenly o n his cold winter's night!!
    Have a wonderful evening.
    Oh by the way no change in my friend marie,
    On life support and not good at all.

  3. Thanks for stopping by-I actually remember reading the fun post you wrote in August-it was wonderful and I really like this post too!

  4. totally agree with rhythmical living~
    i embrace days in when it's too cold outdoors, as a time for redirecting my gaze to what's welcoming me indoors - the slower pace, the relaxing, renewing and refreshing in that inner place & space ~
    thx Mic for your thoughtful post..
    ps- i've posted your chocolate giveaway on my Pink Saturday Valentine post ")
    HaPpY VaLenTine's DaY !!

  5. Hi...thanks for stopping by. My cadence is slower...calmer. And I am getting used to it that way - finally!