Columnist Thomas Tarurongo Wynne. Photo: CI NEWS/16040843
If we measure our lives in season, there are those seasons when the Sun shone so brightly and others where it was grey and cold and it just seemed to rain, rain and rain, writes Thomas Tarurongo Wynne.
If we look at the seasons we face in nature, they are either seasons of growth, from spring to summer, and a time of harvest and of eating the fruits of our labour or seasons when something dies, as leaves fall in autumn and herald in a cold and dark winter ahead.
The good thing is when something in our life dies, that which we shed and moved away from – be it a job, a relationship, a dream and aspiration or simply something we got so wrong – it becomes the fertilizer of our lives, and provides the nutrients to grow the seeds we have planted and bring life again. Nothing in life is a waste, in fact if we believe that our steps are ordered, that our days are numbered and that all things work together for good, then no season in life, is a season that we cannot be thankful for and give thanks.
For we know that as long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease, and these natural seasons are a reflection or mirror to our human seasons and the moments we now find ourselves in. What’s reassuring about a season in life, is that it has a starting point and an end; that if it is autumn you are in and facing a long cool winter, be it your life, your finances, your faith or just trying to get by, spring awaits the winter you now face and there will be a moment when the rain subsides, the clouds break open and the sun begins to shine on your life again – looking for what died in that season, and the seeds amongst it, to bring life to what lies ahead.
We can be so afraid to let something die, but if we hesitate, all we do is prolong the opportunity for new life to grow out of it. Our country is in a season of change, all around us nothing is the same from one moment to the next and as Covid numbers climb both here and in New Zealand, we look for the sun to break out on the other side, and it will.
And as we reflect and consider the season passing, we consider what is truly important again. For as borders closed, it was not just the financial impact on our beautiful Ipukarea, and around the world, rather, it was our longing for Pirianga tangata or connection with those we loved no matter where in the world, that now we could no longer connect as we did in the season before Covid.
Some of us sadly lost loved ones we could not farewell, babies were born we could not hold and cherish, children went to school, finished high school or graduated, that we could not celebrate with and families simply couldn’t get together as we had so freely done, because of the season we entered in to in 2020 and a season we look forward to breaking free from again. Connection, pirianga tangata for us as Cook Islanders is such a deep and essential part of who we are and how we have our being.
And as we look ahead, is it reasonable to begin to consider what died in the season we are in. Maybe things and money or making money meant a little more than it should and at the cost of time with those we love. Did we take for granted relationships that we actually should have invested more in, and maybe some relationships have drifted away, because actually, they should have died a long time ago, but still we held on.
Or maybe, we needed to re pivot at work, to reconsider what we did with our hands each and every day and find something more challenging, more meaningful and better than the comfortable we found ourselves in. Whatever season we can choose, be thankful knowing that what dies becomes the fertiliser for the seeds in the coming season and that faith, hope, and love we must never let go of – the greatest of these is love.