22 December 2009

One New Solstice

The solstices are always important to me, but this year’s winter solstice (21Dec) seemed especially important. This December feels like a major turning point in my life and in many of my friends’ lives as well. Maybe yours too? It’s as if the changes of 21Dec2012 are already starting. (That date is also a solstice and the end of a cycle lasting about 5,125 solar years, known as the Mesoamerican Long Count.)

Maybe not, but solstices are still turning points. The winter solstice marks the time when the days start getting longer instead of shorter (the return of the Sun). It’s a time for writing your goals for the coming year—not resolutions, but goals and big wishes in the personal, present, and positive. It’s also a time for writing what you no longer want onto little pieces of paper, then burning the pieces as you say goodbye... or going outside and speaking your farewells into your hands, then blowing them into the sky.

Since I update my goals and wishes weekly rather than yearly, I rewrote my list this week with a bit more spice and specifics than usual. It was fun! As for saying goodbye, I think most so-called negative things are in our lives on purpose, so I didn’t say goodbye to many things. Just things I think are on their way out anyway. Lessons I humbly hope I’ve learned.

I also, for the first time, got to see Aiken’s sparkling winter wonderland known as Christmas in Hopelands. Over 100,000 lights? Yes, yes, there are, along with holiday music throughout the gardens, free refreshments (donations accepted), and a teensy-tinsy old house (the Dollhouse) you can walk through. But the main thing is the lights. If you’re in the area, the last night to visit this year is 26Dec. If not, here are my photos.


mario g. said...

Thanks for sharing. I grew up in the Philippines and I'm not familiar with the soltice. It's interesting.

And thanks for sharing the photos. We have something similar here in MD but you have to pay admission so we're skipping it.

Vanessa said...

They're charging admission? Hmm... Yeah I'd skip it too. That ruins the spirit of it. I like how this one in Aiken accepted donations for hot cocoa, cookies, etc. They probably got more money that way.