And then, suddenly, it was winter.
Heavy and gray, a cloud of cold smoke.
This time of year and I have a love/hate relationship.
I love the snow. Something about how it forces people to retreat to their homes and spend time with their families makes me feel giddy and nostalgic. Maybe it’s a control thing (everything in its right place!) or an introversion thing (no crowds or conversation!) or a laziness thing (pajamas forever!). All I know is that I dig it.
I also like being taken care of and no other season makes me feel more loved. When the weather and roads get nasty, everyone becomes a mother. “Stay home,” Mama World says, forcing you back to the couch. “Relax and rest up. Everything else can wait.”
All sorts of glorious.
Unless it’s the kind of winter we’re having right now – the aforementioned snow-less kind that leaves you feeling like you’re trudging through colorless quicksand. In particular, these weeks between Christmas and spring are a torturous trek of icy repetition and today I am feeling it.
My (admittedly half-hearted) efforts to rise above the grump have thus far proven unsuccessful. This morning Savannah lost her mind when I told her she couldn’t wear her sandals to the sitter’s and I, ever the beacon of calm, lost mine right back. “Fine!” I spewed after five minutes of aimless bickering. “Wear your sandals, but don’t come crying to me when your toes are cold!” (She relented then, but only because she knew she’d won.)
The cruddy attitude and ashen sky that started it followed me to work, where my classroom heater has been on the fritz for months. Today, in a fit of ill-timed annoyance, the motor decided to broadcast its demise with a tick so loud and incessant I had several students volunteer to kick it back into shape (or just kick it). By the end of the day I was half tempted to not only give them the go ahead, but join them in their noble pursuit.
I’m irritated with the lists too – the unending, unappreciated daily obligations that accompany parenthood and life in general. I have tests to grade, suppers to cook, clothes to wash, resolutions to fulfill, and these tasks, though small and insignificant, weigh heavy on me these days. The barren trees and wet ground seem to have given them extra mass.
This kind of winter does less than pleasant things to my mood.
It’s a cold trail I’m traversing, waiting impatiently for the cosmos to shift and the seasons to evolve.
Waiting impatiently for the snow to fall.