Today is the Autumn Equinox, that extraordinary moment in the year where day and night are paused at equal lengths. After tonight, the nights will get longer and the days shorter.
I have a problem with darkness, the lack of light the winter months bring. I’m not a great fan of wallowing in sunshine either; I’ve never been one for lolling around slathered with suncream and basting myself every hour. But I do spend a lot of time outdoors and I am feeling slightly sick at the thought of the diminishing hours of daylight. I get S.A.D. I have a special lamp which takes the edge of the worst of it, and I take St.John’s wort too. I’m also feeling resentful of the fact that my summer was spent either working or getting stuff ready for work and extremely little doing the things I enjoy like walking along beaches and in forests and working in my garden. I know it was my choice, albeit a Hobson’s choice as after this week I don’t know when I will next get work, but I still resent it.
It also occurred to me that barring accidents or lethal illness, I am roughly at an equinox of life. My grandmother lived to be 85, and the mid to late 80s seems to be the lifespan of much of my family that I know of. Given that Nan lived through two world wars, smoked, ate stupid food and had 8 kids, the likelihood is that at 43, I am probably about halfway through my allotted span of life. I might get more, or I might get less.
I’m thinking that just as I don’t want to waste the sunny days of my summers again doing things I don’t love doing, I really don’t want to spend the second half of my life the same way. I’ve had a good life and made good choices, but that said, I haven’t achieved very many of the dreams and ambitions I have always had deep inside. I was brought up to believe that I’m not very important and that my dreams too are just that: dreams.
A bit later today, when I’m dressed at least, I want to do something to celebrate this double equinox and to fix in my mind that every day needs to be savoured, rain, snow, bills and triumphs and all. I’m loathe to make a big deal out of this because I have a horror of show, but I do want to mark it in some way.
I’ll fill you in later what I do.