January is a funny old month. After the whirlwind of Christmas I feel the need for simplicity. I am usually happy to pack away the decorations; to gather toys and clothes to donate to charity, making space for the gifts we have received; and to clear out the high salt and sugar snacks that have surrounded us for the past month. I am a big planner, I love to dream up projects for myself, and January is the perfect month to do this. The new, fresh year stretches out ahead like a fresh notebook, full of possibilities. I have plans, many plans. The mind is certainly willing, there is a frenzy of activity in my brain. Unfortunately that is where the energy remains. My body has an entirely different agenda. Right now I think it wants to hibernate, maybe until March.
It’s not that I don’t like winter. I love a crisp, frosty, still day with wintery sunlight spilling through bare branches. I do not like the wet and windy days of greyness that we have had for, what feels like, months. I have no reason to complain about the weather. We have been safe, warm and dry so far this winter, when many have had to leave their homes and belongings to the mercy of rising flood waters. We are lucky.
Still my body is not playing along. It craves the outdoors and fresh air, just not the kind of outdoors that it sees through the window. At the same time it calls out for pyjamas and blankets, hot drinks and good books. And solitude.
I think the girls feel it too. There is a restlessness surrounding us all. Whereas I crave immersion in a good book, they seem to want to do nothing more than curl up and watch endless episodes of My Little Pony or Dino Dan. We are all a little crabby and listless. Fresh air helps a bit but the cold and damp and mud gets a bit tedious.
But I know that it won’t last forever, I know that we need to just embrace this as a normal part of the seasonal rhythms. Before very long the girls will be crazing me to take them to the playpark yet again, and I’ll be dragging them in from the street of an evening. So maybe I’ll just go and snuggle up under the duvet with my book…