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  • Writer's pictureCici Joch

The season of winter

My first winter in 23 years, yes I lived in Florida the last 23 years and in the beginning I would travel back to France in the winter until I started getting sick every time and family members preferred to visit Florida. So I avoided the cold like the plague!

Now living in France I had to accept the cold and I even embraced it. It has been exciting to witness the leaves change color, wear a sweater and boots again, sit by the fire. It hasn't bothered me like I thought it would.I have completely changed our lives upside down so naturally I created new habits or tried to!

The one constant I had in Florida was exercising, it was part of my daily practice. I dropped off the kids to school and off I went in my work out clothes or I went before they went to school. I had never realized how much more logistics come with exercising in the winter, packing a bag of clothes, changing heavy bulky winter clothes Living outside of a big city, finding a gym has been challenging. I did find one but the French are not a morning culture like in the US so no 6am classes here! Perhaps it has to do with the fact that it's dark until 9am right now?! Anyway, what I am trying to say is I have skipped on my exercising BIG TIME. I attend a yoga class once a week and that's it- it doesn't feel good and I miss it. I have tried exercising at home before the kids wake up but it's so cold I can't get motivated. I do enjoy walks in the forest when it's not raining, which is not very often!

This winter has been slow and quiet and I started to feel guilt about not doing enough, but I have also been in deep introspection mode, the quiet and calm, the house I am in that my grandfather built and the energy of the forest have really pushed me to explore my shadows. I will touch on this another time as I am still processing. The point is yes on the outside it doesn't look like much but on the inside I have been "doing". It's just like winter when all the trees, plants and soil are steady and still, it doesn't look like much is happening but underneath it all, it's preparing for a beautiful season of spring getting all the nourishment from mother earth because guess what? The spring always comes!

So yes I miss exercising but I am also appreciating that my body is going through its first winter in 23 and at its own pace (maybe that's spiritual BS to feel better about my lack of motivation!) either way I am ok with it!!! No guilt here! So here is to all of you who are going through a season of winter, there is no spring without winter (well maybe in Florida there is!) but life is in the contrasts and to enjoy the heat you must have experienced the cold. Celebrating the beauty of what life has to offer even when it's uncomfortable!

The picture was taken in Patagonia a few years ago- this is not Normandie!

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