Breakthrough Month

March is, for the ancient Celts, the second month of Spring.

It may be odd to see it as that, especially as so much of the Northern Hemisphere continues to be frozen, and much of it under snow. But the ancient Celts understood that growth happens even if you can’t see it, and that March would be the “break-through” month for much of creation.

It would literally break through the ground in bits and pieces.

I remember one March in Toledo, Ohio, listening to the radio as the snow fell on a Sunday night. Those wonderful words I had longed to hear finally came out of the announcer’s mouth, “No School for Trinity Lutheran Church and School,” and my brother’s and I cheered from our beds that we’d have a snow day that next day.

And as I lay in that bed and looked out the window, I saw the large tree next to my window, snow-covered, with small buds hanging off the branches.

It was ready to bloom, even as a blanket of ice and snow covered it.

And I remember feeling both glad for no school, but also quite sad for that tree that was ready for a break-through, and I resolved at that moment not to wish or pray for anymore snow that March, even if it meant no more snow days, so that tree could have a chance.

A quaint little story, for sure. But impactful for me. I had both extreme naivete (as if my prayers had caused or hastened snow), and some profundity, feeling connected with nature and a responsibility to allow it to do its thing.

March is the break-through month. The vernal equinox will balance life for a bit. The Earth will feel more and more alive with each day.

March is associated with the ash tree. In Nordic mythology Yggdrasil, the world tree, was an ash tree. It represented for the Celts the connection between the heavens and the earth, and in the month where the light and shadows balance for a moment, it makes sense they’d choose this tree.

We can meld our intentions with that of creation and allow each and the other to “do its thing.”

Plant the seeds you’re waiting to sow.

Stick daffodils behind your ear (a common practice for the ancient Celts to honor the Spring).

Embrace a new idea, aligning your inner life with the outer burgeoning life around you.

March is the break-through month.

What is breaking through for you?