Reflecting on these and other battles it has become clear to me that there is a rise and fall, an ebb and flow in all things.
Nature itself in its seasons has a pattern of renewal, blossoming, maturing and death followed by renewal again.
So it is too in my own life, although not necessarily in tune with nature’s seasons. I have periods when energy levels are high, when ideas burst forth, periods when plans come into fruition, periods when maturation allows things to settle into my subconscious and become part of who I am, and periods, fallow periods, when energy levels are low and I need to allow myself to recuperate.
I must accept these fluctuations, go with them, understand that they are natural patterns and not fight against them.
Highs and lows are part of these patterns, and I must learn that this is so – not get so carried away on the high that I fly too close to the sun, or sink so deep into the low that it becomes a bottomless pit.
Sometimes it can feel like a roller coaster, and I suppose in a way it is; but knowing that I am on a roller coaster allows me to enjoy the ride even if, some times, I must hold on very tightly.
I do well to study natural patterns and to learn. If I watch a child grow I will notice periods of rapid growth followed by consolidation periods, followed again by rapid growth. A child too, learning to walk, will in the early stages when it wants to get somewhere quickly, drop to its hands and knees and crawl. Yet it will persist in learning to walk, knowing intuitively that is the better option in the long term.
All growth, all learning follows these patterns – we make rapid progress then seem to plateau and we can become discouraged. Yet if we continue to work we will be laying the foundations under the plateau that allow the next period of growth.
My most immediate teacher of natural patterns is the sea. I have places I can go, either physically or in my head, which allow me to watch the pattern of the tides and to learn their significance.
The tide comes in,
the sea roars and boils,
crashes in great waves on the strand,
beats itself against the sea wall,
throws great clouds of spray skywards,
demonstrates its enormous power,
its incredible energy.
Then it goes out,
everything is still,
the tide driven back from the shore,
distant ripples at the sea’s edge,
the energy seeming all spent,
the power – not gone, just rebuilding,
Audio version available at http://youtube.com/user/DavidAgnewpoet