(Winter for me, puts a halt on a lot of outdoor work and activity. Even though it is just December and we have mild winters, especially compared to places I have lived-Indiana, Nebraska, Chicago, & Colorado-I still struggle to enjoy being outside and to stay healthy. I decided to write a thought I had this morning of my younger self waiting with me for summer to arrive)
As a little girl, with hat, scarf, extra socks, and boots, I tried to enjoy winter. The beautiful snow would captivate me. Standing at the window as it fell in heavy, thick flakes, cold creeping through my skin, I wanted to go stand in it. As I tilted my head up, the flakes rushing swiftly toward my face, I would try to catch a few with my tongue. If they landed there, I can not recall. I remember them soaking my hat, my cheeks, and sliding down through my scarf. My toes would begin to tell me to move around, that they were cold.
As it quickly accumulated on the cold ground, I caught myself standing around. Under the trees, remembering climbing this one or that one. Playing over there, King of the Hill with the neighbor kids. Hide-n-Seek when the sun was setting. Living in Indiana, Chicago, Colorado, and Nebraska for awhile, as a kid, I experienced my share of snow. Coming through two major blizzards in the 1970’s, and more than enough of the flu, strep throat, mono, and any virus that could grab me, I stayed in the warm house. My tomboy self would have to wait for late spring. I read Laura Ingall’s book the Long Winter and Farmer Boy. Books were helpful and I enjoy reading.
Now, as a grown up girl, every morning, I look out the windows patiently waiting for warmth. I walk hand in hand with the little girl who can not wait for summer. We still dress warm and brave the cold, even though winters here in Tennessee are not as strong. We daydream of long summer nights, catching lightning bugs, fuzzy caterpillars that have become beautiful butterflies. Baby birds, safe in their nest, in the tree you wish you could climb. Blades of grass under shoeless feet. A warm body and dark skin from staying out all day, playing and happily enjoying each and every ray.
Hand in hand, we dream of memories long past. I look down at her, and promise to keep those memories alive. Hand in hand, she mischievously looks at me and promises to help me make new one’s. She has been eyeing this tree she wants me to try to climb. It’s ok she says, we will take it slow!