But that’s the only difference I can see between the two of
us.  I have, since noon on
Christmas, when our extended families fled from the dinner table to avoid
crashing in the snow on the way back to their homes, been in full-on hibernation
mode.  I have eaten, slept, let the
laundry and trash pile up around my house and done, in general, nothing.  It’s been awesome.  I’ve also watched several movies, some
good and some not, and read a novel. 
That’s basically been the only thing I think I’ve done that a bear might
find unfamiliar.

I’m not a Taoist, but I do buy into that idea of yin and
yang times of year and that winter is the yin season, a time when we are meant
to slow down and do less, something that is almost impossible at Christmas.  Our natural yin time is when we are
supposed to rest more, use the shorter days and longer nights to get more
sleep, and eat warm, nourishing foods. 
It’s all part of that “balance” thing that so many people seem to be
looking for but also seem to be unable to master, mostly because we are not a
hibernation kind of culture.

And I have not been much of a hibernation kind of girl for
quite some time, but I have to admit there seems to be something to this whole
thing, because I have enjoyed the heck out of taking it easy and just hanging
out.  The snow has made it hard to
get out and about, but that’s one of the things I like about snow days—it gives
us an excuse to stay at home. 
Events and activities are cancelled, stores are not open, and we all seem
to heave a collective sigh of relief when that happens.  It’s as though we have to have some
cosmic permission slip to skip out on all that’s going on “out there”.  That’s a little weird if you think
about it.

I wouldn’t want to be trapped for extended periods in a
wrapping paper littered house with two active kids and two geriatric dogs and a
young, hyperactive one, but for a couple of days, it’s been a welcome respite
from the holiday rush.  I haven’t
even panicked too much about the fact that I haven’t run in three days.  To be perfectly honest, I just haven’t
wanted to.  Instead, I’ve done some
yoga, and yesterday, the most strenuous thing I did was snowboarding down a
hill in our cow pasture.  I don’t
even feel guilty about it.

I’m not planning on adopting
a bear lifestyle focused on Taoist meditation or anything, but for a couple of
days, I’ve had a really good time eating leftovers and dozing under a worn out
quilt in front of my fireplace.  It
makes school, running, trips to the grocery store and the laundry, which
doesn’t pile up when you simply wear the same pajamas for a few days, something
to enjoy (or at least not dread in the case of laundry), which is as it should
be.

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