I sit here in my office. There is silence in the living room which means that my children have either bitten each others heads off like the gerbils of my childhood, or they are actually playing together. Quietly. (Ok, I hear some discussion so I guess their heads are intact)
It's a gray day, which I don't mind so much now that they are few and far between. I can still see the piles of white snow in the forest behind the house, but dotted with the brown remnants of last years fertility. The trees are covered in clingy, fuzzy moss and I haven't found evidence of the new buds for that renewal of life, but I have faith they are waiting to burst out, and very soon.
It seems all too soon it happens, but the sun sets a little earlier, and the air becomes brisk and the first leaf begins to turn. To me it's a sign to really embrace the time that's left and prepare for what lies ahead. I love Autumn and the scents and feel of that time. Mixed in that excitement of ghosts and goblins and pumpkins and gourds is the anticipation of that first fall of snow.
This transition between Winter and Spring (also called Mud Season) is something I have dearly missed over the last 10 years. I may have had days of beautiful weather in a row, for nearly months at a time, because sometimes in Arizona you are lucky enough to have those perfect days. I find though that there is something invigorating and inherantly necessary to my being to live through the seasons at full strength. The brisk days of Winter with an early start to clear your car of snow and ice, makes me truly appreciate these first small signs of Spring. There is something to be said for the awakening, the energy that really does come with the last traces of snow and the first green of life. It's not called "Spring Fever" for nothing.
I'm happy to be in a place in my life where I can understand and appreciate the joy that lies in the struggles of life. Sometimes it is so hard. The snow just piles up and it seems endless. For me though, in the coldest part of Winter, when you emerge from your warm home and plunge into the cold, there is something that happens. After a snowfall everything is covered in white, and it's as if the flaws around you are camoflauged and for just a moment it's beautiful. I have always been mesmerized by how quiet the world seems right after a significant snow. It's as if the snow dampens the noise around me and you can understand the meaning of silence. It can be hard to find those moments soemtimes, other times it's seemingly impossible.
It's the survival of these things that makes me strong. The jubilation of survival that gives me appreciation for the less struggling times. Sometimes Winter seems too long and Spring just too far, but that glimmer of hope, that promise of budding leaves that carries us through. Victorously we are able to really soak up that warm sun when it comes.