By: Mary Morris
We have had a lot of snow this winter. Even by New England standards. And hopefully, we have had our last storm in March. The blizzards of 2013 did not frighten me nor stress me out. Of all the things I worry about (and trust me, there are plenty), weather is never one of them. I never inherited the weather worry gene from my mother!
The great thing about kids is that weather is a non-issue. And my son’s enthusiasm for winter in general and the recent storms in particular is contagious. When I opened the slider to my deck on the last storm, I announced, “Wow, look at all this snow!” thinking of the heavy shoveling and the power outages and so on. My son, who is 4 years old, woke up, peered out the window (eyes wide like saucers) and shouted, “It’s a winter wonderland!” The wind was howling. It was bitterly cold. And the snow was swirling in every direction. It was white-out conditions and you could hardly see. This was a New England storm that could be dangerous. But he only saw the beauty of it – the beauty and the power of nature. I have never seen someone enjoy the snow more. He never seems to get cold. I am bouncing up and down thinking, “Can I still feel my feet?” while he is soaked head to toe, bartering with me for more time. “Just 5 more minutes…..just two more minutes…”
When I was watching my kids sledding recently on a bright 40 degree day, I was brought back to my childhood of sledding and snow forts and yes, the blizzard of ’78. It was such sheer fun! Like all kids, we never thought about losing power and what a hassle that was or walking to get milk at the convenient store. We just made plans for making forts and sledding. And no school wasn’t bad either. As adults we somehow lose that sense of wonder.
But I feel having children allows me to see things through their eyes and enjoy it all over again. There are things I miss once a storm has passed and the regular schedule ensues. I miss the lazy spontaneity that no schedule brings. If all the roads and stores are closed, where can you go? No where. You have to be creative with your time. I enjoy afternoon book readings and “noodle” time (lying on the bed and just talking). I will miss the cups of hot chocolate after playing in the snow with no time limits. In our society that is always on the move, you almost feel guilty staying home. If it’s a state of emergency, we all have to slow down and sometimes that is a good thing. And truth is, as long as I have taken a hot shower, I don’t mind the power going out for a while. Not all day but a few hours. Hey, an excuse not to cook is a good thing, right?
So as we headed out to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day on a holiday that can feel like spring some years, I shivered when we got outside and exclaimed, “Oh, it is freezing out! This is ridiculous! It is supposed to be spring.” And my son replied without hesitation, “I know, it should be raining clovers!” Now that is a perfect thought. He will make magic out of the springtime rain, too!