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Sporadic photos and notes from a Psyche-midwife, cheerleader, anthropologist--aka clinical social worker in therapy practice. Photos are usually mine except for those of historical events/famous people. Music relevant to the daily topic is often included in a web video embedded below the blog. Click on highlighted links in the copy to get to source or supplemental material. For contact information, see my website @ janasvoboda.com or click on the button to the right below. Join in the conversation.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Reeling in the Years

Birthdays serve as my New Year-- a chance to reflect on the past and rechart my course.  I spent the days leading up to it in the loving embrace of my beautiful sisters and eldest daughter.  We walked in the woods, talked til all hours, laughed til our cheeks hurt, did art, ate slow food.  I fully immersed myself in their shower of nurturing and left reinvigorated and deeply grateful to have been born related to such an amazing bunch of women.  On my actual birthday, I enjoyed a quiet morning of writing and reflection, an afternoon in the forest mycogeeking, and a great dinner with my family.

I am looking at my time and seeing that it is finite.  How do I want to spend my days?  I am looking at my habits and seeing which ones I want as part of the next decade, at my relationships and how I can deepen them, and at my values and how I can live them more fully.  I am counting my many blessings and thinking of how I can honor them. I invite you to do the same. 

Even if you aren't having a hallmark birthday in this season, think about prepping for your own new year.  The dark short days offer us encouragement to slow down, rest and turn inside for a time.  Take time for a personal inventory.  Spend a quiet evening or a rainy day in contemplation of where you have arrived, and redirect to where you want to end up. 

ps-- the picture is of a dahlia, still blooming even in all this cold dark wetness.  I like the sleeping bee nestled in there--


Sarahsan said...


On your birthday (which will join the pantheon of beloved November birthdays: my father, mother, sister in law) I went to hear the poet Fady Joudah, a doctor who had lived and worked among refugees. Your beautiful dahlia with the hidden bee makes me think of his poem:

In paradise hospital beds
Are under ageless
Mahogany and sycamore,
Bearing every kind of fruit.
Hot meals are autumn leaves,
Branches are waitress arms,
And also poles for drips.
And birds drop the pills
Into your mouth
From bills of
Surgical precision.
For Aspirin the swallow,
For Benadryl the nightingale.
No harm befalls you.
The roots will sense your ailment.
And where there's a latrine
A perfume tree
Will grow, a dappled zephyr
Full of return.

Jana Svoboda, LCSW said...