April: A month for new beginnings.

April’s coming and going has brought us spring, 2012!

(Photography by Lindsey Gemme) A hummingbird seeks out nectar at the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden.

As the temps begin to rise here in Arizona to remind us of the very short bridge between spring and the hot official kickoff of summer on the solstice (July 20), everybody is getting the itch. It’s the time to start shaking off that winter coat, undressing the BBQ, starting new projects outside, enjoying the sun, and letting the breeze whisper against your exposed skin once more.

It’s also a time to make resolutions. You heard me!

This is the time of year I make my “new year’s resolutions,” rather than during that dark, unalterable atmosphere of cold and faint hope between Christmas and New Year’s. When humans used to depend on the land, and were much more tuned in to the changing of the seasons, the spring season was a beacon of renewed life – both in nature and ourselves. Neo-pagans of today follow in their ancestors’ footsteps.

Springtime, according to a Pagan website called witchology.com, is the time to “embrace Eostre’s (goddess of fertility and new beginnings) passion for new life and let our own lives take the new direction we have wanted for so long….” She symbolizes the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. It’s not hard to see why, as my own (albeit small) garden is beginning to tentatively ‘spring to life.’ Winter is over. Now it’s time to shine again.

It’s also a time when we’re more inspired to take on new things, as the new-ness of life is restored on earth. It’s human nature. What better time is there to make – and potentially KEEP – those promises to yourself?

I’ve never been much of a “spring cleaner.” In fact, I was just the opposite of the spectrum, when I would be most moved to clear out the house come the onset of each chilly November before setting down roots for the cold winter to come. But this year I have found myself spending some evenings trolling through my bookcases for things I just don’t need anymore (which is something I’ve never done in my life), rearranging things, and taking a long, hard look at life.

If anyone who has been following my life the past year, they know of the hardships, and transformations, I have endured these past 12 months. April was the final anniversary of the hard lessons I’d learned and spent the subsequent months trying to process.

But today, I am stronger and more determined than I’ve ever been to live life. For the first time since I was born, I have found myself clearing out the clutter, and just overall, finding myself able to “let go.” I have a pile of books next to my door ready to find new homes, and a huge pile of clothes in my closet waiting for transport. As the semester winds to a close, I also find my newfound freedom from the daily grind of reading and essay-writing to be inspiring. So next weekend, you won’t find my relaxing on the couch with a movie, holding a mojito – nope, I’ll be scrubbing floors, vacuuming, and maybe putting a touch of paint on a wall or two.

There’s still more clearing out of old, stale energy to be done.

I have discovered in the last year a whole new me, and a whole new verve for living. As spring rounds out the most difficult year of my, and my family’s, life, I find myself with a “new passion for life”, and “for letting my own life take the new direction I have wanted for so long.”

In that vein, I have decided on a few resolutions for the next year.

1) Create a vision board. As visual as I am, I have been wanting to create a vision board to help remind me every day to visualize the destiny I want to effect. It will keep me motivated, and inspired.

2) Keep in touch with people. I tend to be a very introspective person, and sometimes get caught up in my own little world, and I wonder why I don’t often hear from other people. It’s a two-way street. So one of my goals is to keep in touch with at least one friend a day. Whether by text, email, or call, I want to check in someone I know and love, to keep that line of communication open.

3) Learn Tai Chi. I bought a DVD ages ago, and haven’t followed up on it in ages. I want, by the end of next month, to have mastered all the movements and do it regularly. I tried out a section for 10 minutes today between homework assignments, and just that little bit improved my sense of well-being. I actually wasn’t expecting that. So, maybe that’s a sign to keep going.

4) Rediscover my creativity. I am a writer at heart, photographer second. I want every week to produce something creative, whether it’s a picture, or a very short poem or scene…and post them. I want to feel accomplished every week that I churned out something just for me.

5) Schedule some fun/me time. Yes, sadly, I am one of those people who literally have to pencil that into the schedule, or else it never gets done. So – here goes nothing!

6) Keep up with the laundry and dishes. Yeah. Enough said there. In the last difficult year, I got out of the habit of taking care of myself, and my surroundings. I think it’s time to start taking charge again.

7) Once a month, discover and manufacture a new and more natural cleaning agent. From clothes detergeant to deodorant, there are much more organic ways to clean and function in life without excess use of chemicals. The internet, youtube, and Amazon.com are great resources for learning how to manufacture natural cleaning agents. It’s about time I start.

And that’s the lot, so far. Viva la springtime.


3 thoughts on “April: A month for new beginnings.

  1. Hahah! No, but definitely an added benefit for you. I’m just tired of putting things off and living this way! Ugh!


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