Awaiting rebirth together

We’re expecting another snowstorm here in Colorado, reminding me that it’s about this time every year that I’m officially done with winter. Lucky for me, we’re halfway through!

Yesterday was the beginning of Imbolc, the ancient Celtic celebration that marks the midway point between Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox and the return of the light. It starts the evening of Feb. 1 and goes through the evening of Feb. 2.

For my Celtic ancestors, the beginning of February meant the end of the darkest days of the year and food scarcity; they had survived another winter. The lighter, more abundant half of the year was on its way, and they observed the occasion by celebrating, mostly with fire.

The word Imbolc originates from Old Irish. Some say it means “in the belly,” referring to pregnant sheep and cows. One source translates it to “in the belly of the mother,” as in Mother Earth. But my personal favorite is “in the belly of the ewe.” It conjures so many moist, goopy visions!

As we head toward the return of the light, I’m feeling a little like the pregnant ewe—slow, heavy, and ready to get on with things. Winter has been a season of shedding some old patterns of behavior and pondering what I am birthing myself to be, or becoming. At this halfway point, I’m eager for labor to begin, but apparently I need more gestation time. The light is returning, I know it is! We’re just not quite there yet.

Panning out from my navel-oriented gaze to the collective, it would appear the proposition of returning light is bleak. So much of what we read, hear about and talk about is either terrifying, disturbing, or both. And while I agree we humans are intertwined in complicated, nuanced and seemingly unfixable messes, my daily experience tells me that most of us are doing our best to try to live in the light. In other words, I still believe in the basic goodness of humanity.

So, at the same time I feel the weighty darkness, I also see the beautiful glimmer of light. There is hope. Although it doesn’t seem like it, I believe the world is changing. We’re just not quite there yet.

One of the things I do to stay connected to the glow is to seek sacred community. I attend a lot of gatherings, and I host many as well. Like sheep, we need to flock together to keep the herd vital. In these times, it is comforting to me to pause and reflect together, and to hold space for and celebrate each other.

One difference between what I call sacred community and the general interactions of my day is the intentionality. In community, we focus on our spirits as well as our bodies and minds. We support each other and tend to be curious, rather than put off by our diversity. It’s kind of like being in the belly with siblings waiting to be born. And the wait feels more pleasant when we do it together.

Perhaps you’ll move through the second half of winter with the support of community. Maybe gathering with others in an intentional way can sustain you or even delight you as we literally and metaphorically weather storms and move toward Spring. If you need a guide, I would be honored to be your doula.

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Jennifer Reeve

I am  a healing guide, a space holder and a reflector of your sacred light. My aim is to help you connect with your wild, expansive Divine essence so you may freely share your gifts with the world. I offer intuitive readings, non-touch energy healings, spiritual mentoring, embodiment practices, nature connection and sacred ceremony. It would be my honor to guide you toward your expansion.

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