This is such a crazy, hectic time that it can be difficult to take time to reflect. Colds and flu are everywhere. For me, Solstice is a good time to look at my previous year and ahead to the one coming. We made it over the hump once again. There are many potential rituals attached to that from Celtic days. Solstices are the real turning points-- not our end of the calendar year which is neat but is artificially put together for accounting more than any real biological event.
For me a lot of difficult things came down since my last Winter Solstice which I had celebrated in Tucson. I am looking for the coming year to be better-- I hope. I lost two much beloved cats from our fur family, when I rarely lose one over many years. One, a young cat, was a particularly tough loss that still hurts if I let myself think about it.
My health has had some tests which led to no more gluten or dairy (that makes eating complicated let me tell you). Then came a recent painful facial and ear condition which maybe is diagnosed or maybe not but it didn't feel good. These aren't big things by many standards, but they aren't fun either. I can know I am a lucky woman on a ton of standards, but I also am a woman who will be glad to see this year behind me.
To show some of the good things in my year, I went through 2013 photos for some of my favorites-- excluding, of course, any of the family. These are from big to small moments where each brings back good memories.
One thing I've learned in my now just over 70 years of life-- the best moments in my life aren't the big, exciting ones but instead the small, still ones. The little accomplishments. The lucky times I see something I'd never seen before. Even the sad moments. I can't hold any of them. Some I just want to get through as fast as possible.
Photography is about capturing a moment in a different way so it can be pulled back and the feelings surge over you with the memories. For me, the lesson is you can't hold back life. Life goes on, and we are left to savor memories from special times, enjoy what is right in front of us, and look to what is ahead.