Winter Compassion, Spring Release

Hidden since the first big snow storm of the season, only the bottom edge remained in view. Tucked under the windowed wall of the bus stop shelter and protected from the plow’s continuous dump of snow, gravel and downtown muck, it sat waiting, frozen in time and memorial, no doubt a remnant of an evening of pleasure and forgetting, or a brief relief of pain.

Noting the jager-esque green bottle since mid-January, I wondered how long it would take to pry itself from the frozen mass. While our city was onstage for the world to admire, the pain and vulnerability that co-exists with celebration was hidden under our best dress. Not only in the soup kitchens and charities, the shelters and the bus stops it is also within the corporate offices, windowed suites and spiraled granite sanctuaries of faith.

Like the bottle frozen under the snow, painful life wounds reveal themselves as we grow and our resolve to stay hidden begins to melt. As we tend to the revelations of our deepest self, we see elements we didn’t realize were there, and much like the story of the Princess and the Pea we find, underneath heaps of emotional padding, something that has brought us great discomfort over the years – something we didn’t realize was there. Something we did not understand.

As we become more aware of our own self and what brings us distress, we can make healing changes. Until the time when those uncomfortable emotions reveal their origin, self-compassion is a good travel partner. When I react (instead of respond) to something my co-worker says, I can choose to be compassionate as I observe and acknowledge the bruise that was bumped in the exchange. I do not have to have the answer to “fix” it, only to notice its presence in my life with curiosity and wonder until more is revealed.

Even though I watched the empty green bottle for months, it could not be pulled it out of the ice block earlier than nature allowed. So it is with painful life bruises. However as spring arrives, both in our city and in our lives, we can look forward to cleaning the streets as melting has reveals what is under the ice piles. As we become more aware of our self and our story, we can tend to the wounds in our lives and allow healing to begin and resiliency to blossom.

Create the weekend you want to experience,



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