Souls hibernate too.

Rather than simply watching Groundhog Day on the 2nd, I also watched the livestream of the real Punxsutawney Phil. Just like in the movie, he saw his shadow and declared six more weeks of winter. It’s almost like the season starts on the vernal equinox or something. Haha! It’s March 20th this year, by the way. That’s more a note for me than for you.

Photo credit: Anthony Quintano, 2013

Something surprised me while watching the Prognosticator of Prognosticators. I got a little choked up. Sure, the groundhog is a cuddly looking critter, who is clearly well loved by his handlers, but that wasn’t the reason why. It was in anticipation of the movie, a movie I’ve seen dozens of times. There is something about the story arc that really resonates with me, now more than ever. It’s the same day over and over again. Sure, you’d face the first – maybe even the second – as you’d face any other day. Then things shift. You figure some things out, work out the systems and rhythms surrounding you, become devious and more selfish than you were before. But then you hit a wall, and those pleasures no longer satisfy. Self-destruction becomes tempting. Unlike Phil (the human, not the groundhog), you don’t go for suicide, but, hey, you can neglect your health, ignore the people you love, eat every snack in the house, waste days obsessively bingeing deranged content that upsets you. Obviously, treating yourself poorly feels bad. Pleasure, as previously established, is fleeting. Joy and fulfillment are tougher, but we know they are desirable. You yoyo between chasing that ultimate reward and falling back into the numbness of pleasure, sometimes punishing yourself for failing to live up to your own expectations by engaging in some more self-destructive behaviors. But if you just let go, just relax and stop trying to WIN at life, you just might find that you’re doing all right. You’re still moving toward joy and fulfillment, and that knowledge brings with it contentment. You’re going to be all right.

And by “you,” I mean “me.” That’s why an oversized rodent sniffing a scroll made me cry.

No amount of angelic eye-batting can change the fact that Kittenmouse did, in fact, steal cake.

Tonight is a full moon, the Quickening Moon. I use the 28-day lunar cycle to guide or track short-term goals. At the new moon, I implement habits or dedicate myself to projects. As the moon appears to grow bigger, I likewise watch my own progress. At the full moon, it’s time to say goodbye to a bad habit or work to dispel nasty mindset. As the moon wanes, the undesirable aspect I chose at the full moon also slowly goes away. That’s the idea anyway. I’m not always 100% successful every month, but I am a work in progress. And it’s a magical way to connect my personal life with the greater world around me. As you might have gathered from my reflection on Groundhog Day, I have some self-destructive behaviors to dispel tonight. Disregarding my health, which took a lot of hard work to improve, is not acceptable. Time to kick my in-a-rut-fueled neglect to the wayside. This will put me back in line with healthy habits I established last year: weigh in regularly, hit the gym, eat 1800 calories per day (plus however many I burn at the gym), track my meals, and drink plenty of water. I will also leave the house more often; it gets oppressive staying here all day every day, wondering when the UK government will give me the green light.

Wash away the old and embrace the new.

What do you do when you realize you’ve fallen into a rut?

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