Finally, a Light

My children have been asking me for weeks, “When is spring coming?” And every week, I’ve said, “It has to be soon.” And crossed my fingers, and hoped.

But last night, once again, the temperature went down to near zero. Today, we warmed up, finally. So they asked if they’d be able to swing on their swingset yet. Alas, no. The swings and teeter-totter are still firmly frozen in place by a foot of snow.

The nice thing is this winter has been easier on me. (Because that’s all that matters, right?) I don’t know what the difference is. It’s been so damn cold that I barely leave the house. Hibernation is nice. Maybe I just accepted it. Yoga pants, a pot of tea, and multiple blankets on the sofa and I’m a happy camper.

It’s only been this past week, though, that I’ve realized the extent of my nesting. I entered the YMCA today for the first time in weeks. It was nice to see the few friends who were there, but wow, there were so many new faces! And a meeting with my running buddy, our first run since October, felt so amazing. The company, the cold sunshine, the movement.

It had me thinking today of “The Long Winter,” the Little House book about the winter of 1880-1881. As a child, I was fascinated by that book, and the differences between then and now. My friend Connie, though, hated that one. It dragged on forever. Maybe it’s the introvert in me, but the thought of being snowed in always appeals to me. At first, anyway. It’s part of the reason I go into what I call “squirrel mode” every August. Stock my freezers and pantry for winter. Just in case we’re snowed in and can’t walk the three blocks to the local Tops, of course.

The downside to this winter has been my inability to run outside. OK, I know, I can run when it’s cold out. But I don’t want to (whine). And I’m all right with that (remember, no shame). It would have been nice if I’d had the energy to ride my bike trainer inside, however. Oh, well. Over it.

The long-range forecast has sun and fifties. FIFTIES! It’s still going to be cold as sin at night, but fifties! Soon! I can deal with the snow we’re expecting on Thursday because there is home, dammit. The end is in sight. That, and the short taste of warmer weather I had in North Carolina a couple of weeks ago will be enough to get me through this last burst.

I feel a kinship with the crocuses, the buds on the trees, the animals leaving hibernation. I’ve enjoyed the winter, but am ready to rejoin the world. Before we know it, we’ll walk outside and there will be that fragrance in the year. You know the one I’m talking about? Like everything living has finally thawed and the air smells green and fresh and new.

Speaking of new, my friend Isabel Sterling‘s blog post today is pretty cool. She echoes a problem with which I struggle: making the time to write, even when you can’t pull an all-day stint. I like the ideas she links to, and plan to implement at least some of them. Check it out.

Meanwhile, to bed, and dream of spring.

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About Kerrie Strong

Years ago, I chose to suppress my creative side in favor of a career (or two, or three) in science. This blog is filled with exercises intended to reverse the atrophy of my right brain. I hope you enjoy my ramblings.
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