Lazy winter days are blank and soft and grey. When spring comes along with its blossoming energy, these days are easy to dismiss and even easier to miss. For, lazy winter days are a comfort that we take advantage of, yet never appreciate fully. On these days, there are always reasons for doing less. It is always just cold enough for us to invent endless excuses to stay inside. It is always just gloomy enough to muddle our brains with imaginations of the summer to come. I can never focus on a lazy winter day. There is nothing to focus on. The hours pass by, unnoticed, each grey cloud replaced by an endless, identical sibling. Daylight grows and fades, a degree at a time, until it the day has become night again. I follow suit, barely shifting a few inches from the seat that has grown accustomed to me too. On these days, I have seemingly endless patience because I barely appreciate the movement of time. When we do work on lazy winter days, they encourage us to work on the things that don’t need doing. There are certainly far more important tasks to be completed, but instead, I find miniscule things to do. Maybe I finally get annoyed by the pile of unfolded laundry laying at the foot of my bed. Maybe I find a new way to rearrange my pencil pouch before it is almost instantly disrupted. But homework, real work, is reserved for another, more energetic time. Instead, I move imperceptibly like a glacier, gradually carving its path into the land.
It seems especially important to reflect on these days as we are about to reach the end of another unhurried February. Everyone will always complain about the bitter winds, the slippery pavements, the pile ever-growing melting slush. But it is also exactly those things that make us slow down. The world moves at a slower rhythm in the winter. Your heart doesn’t need to race the burning heat. Your brain feels content to move at a syrupy pace, at last released from the frenetic pace demanded by the animation of other seasons. Spring is all impulsive growth. Summer a never-ending sunshine-soaked revel. And autumn is transformative, from green to reds and oranges and yellows. But winter, has always been still. We are frozen in ice, awaiting the coming thaw when we must move again. Nothing grows in the winter. We just wait. And in the process of waiting, something is gained. For there is no loss in moving a little bit slower. No sacrifice in catching your breath. We are constant beings, always the same with slight shifts. We don’t believe it though. We try to defy it. Instant transformation is an impossibility that tortures us. It is a hope that is implicit in every New Year’s Resolution, in every career plan stretching for the next five years. And when there is the least bit of stagnation, the sting is sharper than a pounding needle. Winter demands a periodic stagnation. A time to recollect all the broken pieces of our change over the year. And maybe consider the cracked portrait of the past before inevitably moving on.