Tuesday, 12 March 2013

It's Not Spring

Spring doesn't officially start until March 20th. Still, we have all been relishing in the hypothesis that we were already living in it for some time now. The kiss of the warm sun. The drip and flow of melting snow. It all seemed more possible as our winter here had been mild with no severe cold stretches and not a tremendous amount of snowfall. I only recall having to figure out how to shovel my steps with a toddler once this year, and the rest could wait for my husband. This is unusual in these mountainous parts.

As the pussy-willows sprouted, out have come the bikes. The rollerblades. Even the boats. The avid gardeners and those longing for their meticulous lawns have begun rigorously chopping away at the packed snow that has accumulated, hoping to assist nature's transition.

But it happened. Today it snowed. The clouds hadn't completed their bestowing us with the frosty white stuff. It piled on the branches like an exquisite first-of-the-season snowfall. It covered the end-of-season spread of dirt that was used for traction. It was very beautiful.

Beautiful? I don't think that was the general consensus of the fellow inhabitants of our little snow-ville. Facebook was plastered with curses and poutings about how we had been fooled and this wasn't fair. Especially since yesterday had been so enjoyably spring-like! I decided to check the twitter account of "Mother Nature" to see how much flack she gets, but it turns out I have to be a "follower" to see her tweets, and I don't have a twitter account. Good thing. I don't need to look into it more. I know that the majority of my fellow citizens were not pleased.

Years ago I would not have been either. I suffered from Seasonal Affective Disorder. The winter blues. And it would bring me down and make me feel run-down mentally and physically. One year I felt it more than ever in my body and decided that I'd had enough. I was tenaciously going to figure out how to appreciate all seasons. I was going to get outside. So I tried downhill skiing. It turned out that my extra exhaustive condition was from Leukemia. Being outdoors helped me get through the battle. And in further seasons I developed an appreciation for what is given to me that I cannot change.

I am unable to pronounce that it rain or snow or that the sun shine brightly. I have to accept my plight. Begrudgingly, or with decision to take advantage of the opportunities given to me. Sure, if I have a specific event there is the possibility that Mother Nature can ruin my plans, but generally I can only face the day given and make the most of its attributes.

This attitude came in very handy when I had a baby. I struggled with many factors, like a history of the blues, the sudden myriad of changes, problems with childbirth and with breast feeding. As a result, I suffered from postpartum depression. In order to make it through I would bundle up my baby and take her out every day. We went for walks in the rain. The snow. The wind. The below freezing temperatures. We walked the dog. Walked to town. Went snowshoeing. While talking, singing, and praying, we thankfully took in the healing essence of fresh air. To this day, nothing deters my little nugget from wanting to go outside.

Today she discovered trudging through snow that almost chillingly spilled into her little boots. She plodded ahead slowly, and often surely. Occasionally she required a hand to hold when it became too much resistance for her dainty little legs. She stopped to stare at the intriguing tread inside footprints. And her coat became bedazzled with more and more sparkly fluff that melted and made her mother wonder how long she would remain dry. Her little hands began to get red. They refused to wear mitts because, as means of investigation, they needed the sense of touch. She wanted the full effect.

She didn't claim it a snow day. She revelled in being in the midst of it. And as my improperly adorned feet were saturated with icy dampness, I was glad to have the opportunity to expose her to this joy.

We live in an enchanting place. And spring doesn't begin for over a week.

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