Advent calendar 1: the door

Shut the door not that it lets in the cold but that it lets out the coziness.”
Mark Twain

Today’s image: behind the first door of my ‘advent calendar’ is… Another door.

Doors are symbolic of so many things. It’s 1st December: doorway to winter, here in the northern hemisphere. Closing the door on autumn–my favourite season, and squeezing in a few last autumnal photos, below, before the last leaf falls from the last darkening branch. Perhaps, too, the image is apt because we have felt stuck behind our own front doors in the past few months.

Yes, as the Mark Twain quote suggests, the winter brings that cosy in-doors feeling. It’s almost as if Twain were anticipating the popularisation of hygge. The firelight, candles, the sleet at a dark window: I love it all. Cocooning. But I have been away from blogging too long, taken an accidental sabbatical. Lockdown, you see, has over-indulged my natural introversion, body and mind moving in circles of diminishing size.

Nothing wrong, necessarily, with introversion—we introverts are given to quiet reflection, can be perceptive and, let’s face it, gaining energy from quiet aloneness, from a focus on internal feelings, has been a positive benefit of late.

Still, there’s a point at which introversion can become isolation, can be unhealthy.

And good habits can fall away so easily, then be hard to regain. Psychologists describe a ‘habit loop’. First is the ‘cue’ that stimulates the action, creates a desire, for better or worse. Then the ‘routine’, the repeated actions or tasks that create reinforcement. The more you do, it, the more automatic it becomes. Then your reward, something your brain likes, meaning it will, yes, that feeling of reward will become a cue, triggering the process to begin again. Good habits may be broken for many reasons. Not necessarily because you lack desire, but through loss of energy, perhaps, or through distraction.

All things considered, it’s time to step back through the door.

Will Blogmas help me to create the schedule I need to help the routine stick once more? We’ll see.

Whether representing welcome, invitation, opportunity protection, privacy, or imprisonment, endings or new beginnings, the door provides us with a symbol of endless possibility.

By the way, why do advent calendars, at least in the European tradition, feature doors? Perhaps, they say, because of the 19th century  tradition in Germany of making chalk marks on doors count off the days leading to Christmas.

13 thoughts on “Advent calendar 1: the door

  1. Beautiful post. I do miss the cosy indoors of northern winters sometimes 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. I hope this is the advent of a lovely – and hopeful – summer!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you Libre. Hoping for better times for us all.
        Stay well

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Welcome back, Libre… Good to see you around. I’d been thinking of visiting for quite a while, just realized (realiSed?) you had been MIA.
    I hope all is well with you and yours. Stay safe. I do hope it’s only a few months before one or the other vaccine can reverse all the madness…
    A bientôt
    B.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, thanks so much; it’s good to hear from you. I am looking forward to visiting others’ blogs again, one of the best parts. MIA is correct – a surprising amount of Action given lockdown. But we’re fine – been lucky in our family, in fact. Quite a blogging task I set for myself this month, so people might be hearing a bit too much! Hope you’re well too? What times we’re living in!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Crazy times indeed. At least Trump seems to be on his way out. When will you Brits kick Boris Judas Johnson out? 😉
        Strangely enough lockdown brings lots of action. (I don’t have a “minit”!)
        We are well. Thank God. Leaving tomorrow with all the family to a house we rented for a long week-end in Cuernavaca. South of Mexico city and warmer. It will be our “Xmas” celebration.
        Look forward to your blogging. Stay safe, mon amie…🙏🏻

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Ah, the problem with kicking out Johnson (much as with Trump during his elected term) is who’s going to replace him. Surrounded by a bunch of… Let’s politely say they lack experience, chosen on the basis of being pro-Brexit – a shaky
          foundation if ever there was one. Safe trip and all the best for a wonderful, and warmer, celebration.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. A compatriot of yours says: too many rocks and hard places… 😉
            (Thanks for your best wishes. Likewise)🥂

            Liked by 1 person

            1. At least Brexit is going spectacularly well 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

              1. 🤣
                LOL. Thanks for the laugh.

                Like

  3. sometimes its fun …to get back after a long break 🙂 kind of full of ideas, excitement to write/share lol I guess, even daily blogging can become a “boring routine”, but I know ppl on WP who are blogging daily YEAARRRSSSSS, like every day lol but guess what – they are mostly “men” 😂😂

    Like

  4. Beautiful pictures!!

    Like

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