It's that time of the year where we take down old calendars and put up new ones. I never reach this season without some analysis of how the year behind me went. Are we also ending a decade? This is the same question we had with whether 2000 or 2001 ushered in a new millennium. That one mattered more since so many expected all computers to go nuts.
Often at year's end I write a list of goals that I hope to make happen in the coming year. Last year I didn't do that, but I have done it again for 2010. I had already set myself some 2010 deadlines because I feel that it's the only way I make something happen. I am feeling hopeful even as it seems the world is full of potholes or craters just waiting for any of us to step into them. I've stepped in some over my 66 years and hope I learned from them as that's pretty much the only consolation.
Personally 2009 was a pretty good year for me on a lot of levels. I had many absolutely wonderful times with my kids, grandkids, and us under the same roof. It takes us all working to make that happen, and it's worth it. In 2009 I saw some big changes in my life, had some disappointments, some tears, but what year won't if we have ourselves out there trying to make things happen? It was hard for me to let go of the Tucson house and turn it into a rental; but it was something that I feel good about at the end of the year.
My trip to John Day country was also special on many levels. I found an area, closer to home, that seems like a soul place for me. I am excited at the thought of spending more time there and coming to know it better in 2010. 2009 was a year where I feel I moved ahead in a lot of areas but not far enough. I am hoping 2010 will see more progress.
I find myself adjusting to the changes that old age make in anyone's life. In some ways that is exciting as it's something I have seen with others and now it's my turn-- amazing as that seems. I want to do it without denial, making the most of the experience.
When I was in Tucson, I decided to bring back with me a book by Carl A. Hammerschlag and Howard D. Silverman called Healing Ceremonies. It's about rituals for various stages of our life. It refers to the years where I am right now as the autumn of our life and that covers 56 to 70. I pretty much think he's right as in many ways 66 doesn't feel really old and yet little things tell me that old is very near.
Healing Ceremonies had a lot of good thoughts, but I particularly liked this passage:
"Too often, however, autumn becomes the season of abandoned dreams. The daily drudgery of 'taking care of business' has dulled them. Autumn ought to be the season in which we redefine ourselves, create a story that reveals our spirit. It is the time to review old habits, make some changes and see more clearly that tomorrow is now. Driven by inertia we sometimes tell ourselves lies until we get a heart attack or a divorce, or die."It is our choice what we make of each stage of life. I know that, but too often find myself waiting for some person to come along or a serendipitous event to make my dreams come true. The moment is now and mostly we make what happens happen by what we do, the seeds we sow, the weeds we pull. That starts today with no regrets for seeds we didn't plant, those that refused to come up, or weeds that are too high.
Because this is a Blue Moon, a Full Moon and a partial eclipse, some are saying it is an auspicious time to focus on changes that we want in our life. I got this in an email:
"Full Moon (Blue Moon) is Thursday, December 31 at 12:14 PM Mountain Standard Time with a partial lunar eclipse at 11:54 AM MST (visible in India and China). This is the second full moon of the month and significant in that it can anchor your goals, desires, changes and intentions. It can bring great abundance and prosperity. Because this moon is so close to the earth it may affect the ocean tides and they may be higher, larger and fuller than usual.The painting on the wall behind me is by Oregon artist Judy Erickson of closing a gate which seemed apropos. We are closing the gate to 2009 but that means we are opening it to 2010. No matter what comes in 2010, we make of it what we will.
"This is an important time not to fall asleep into old patterns but rather to take this time around the end of the year and to be proactive with your focus on the things that you want. Do some strong meditative or shamanic practices during this time especially with the personality and influences of 2010 in mind. They will be potent in their influence. If given the opportunity between ritual and focus instead of mindless partying, choose the ritual and focus. It will serve you better in the coming year."
... by Lena Stevens. For more go to [Full Moon/Eclipse Update]