Spring teased me yesterday by popping its head out after the storm, and I spent much of my afternoon shoveling heavy, wet snow and listening to the background music of hopeful birds celebrating the warm sun. One especially burdensome load of mush reminded me, in a not-so-subtle way, that I am not 25 anymore when I felt, and heard, an ominous crack in my lower back. And so the long driveway sits half finished, ebony and ivory, one part black pavement, one part white crust and ice after last night’s chill. I muddled through the rest of the day crooked and bent like an old woman, surfing the TV, the internet, the cell phone, and finally, bumping into the walls and walking through the corridors of my mind with restless sleep.
The winter months lived up to their reputation...cold and dark and often melancholy. But the days are getting longer, and like the coming spring, happier times flirt with me. Impulsively, I wink back. Sadness is melting away, and what’s left in its place are pools of realization, experience...acceptance.
There is no way out of pain, just a way through it.
There is no time limit for grief, or recovery.
There is grace and beauty and remarkable love all around you, if you only let it in.
And just when you think you'll never want to walk outside again, you wake one day and see the red sun burning a hole through the February ice, you catch a glimpse of a blade of grass forcing its way through a shrinking blanket of snow, you can almost feel your heart thaw and soften, and suddenly a sense of hope and renewal fills you.
And you have no choice but to respond.