After a whirlwind, early family Christmas in New York City, I was getting ready for a nice, quiet holiday back home. Then I succumbed to a nasty virus that has put me in bed for a week. Now I feel like a confused, and very grouchy, bear! All my instincts are telling me to crawl back into my cave and hibernate for the rest of the winter. For once I’m not scurrying to get everything ready for the traditional celebrations, and I was hoping to honor the winter solstice by standing still (the word solstice means "sun standing still")—turn inward, listen to the whispers of inspiration, get some new creative work started. But I don’t feel like it, my inner voice screams! Isn’t being human interesting? We set up so many expectations for our happiness, then complain when they aren’t met. I will just have to accept that, at this moment, I’m not a rational human, I’m a tired bear. Time to go back to bed.

Group of Bears (1932, cast 1963) by Paul Manship, photographed at The Metropolitan Museum in New York City.