By: Sandy Churchill
Winter has been pretty kind in its overall restraint in our neck of New England this year, tossing a few random snow squalls here and there, with only a few days below freezing. This week feels like an early Mothers’ Day present—a handful of 50-60 degree sun-streaming days in February, no less!
In school vacation travels to book stores, movies, bowling, and various errands, the days shift out of school mode and I’ve glimpsed more than a few faces beaming at the warm weather, normally-swift-paced-walkers easing their pace, faces turned to the sun. Funny how a few degrees of warmth and surprisingly springlike sunshine are like mercy on strained shoulders, lending us a kind smile amid the often grays and gloom of winter.
This spring gift is a reminder to me that while no one can accuse New England of being boring in her doling out of seasonal weather, this wonderful treasure of early spring days is like a surprise, drop-in visit from a cheerful friend just when we need it most.
Whether it’s economic struggles, the fast pace of everyday, tax time angst or non-stop Facebook tantrums on all-things-political, we could all use a little break. This week, the surprise 60-degree weather is spurring me to think of gardens, ponder a trip to the zoo and think about picnics and parks.
As busy moms and dads, we spend our days and nights “keep-on-keepin’-on” and rarely have the luxury of slowing down to enjoy the smallest of joys in the glory outside. Sure, we notice weather when we are driving, avoiding a storm or the jacket factor when planning to play outside with little ones; but this is different. An unexpected zephyr and glittering sunbeams to light up February like a spring firefly…and subconsciously each of us seems to be responding with a secret joy.
So thank you, God, for the blessing of a spring preview. I noticed, and am so grateful! My spirit needed a lift when I least expected it. I wish the same joy and lift on all the weary souls out there who need a little break, a surprise visit from a cheerful friend called Spring.
No matter that we will likely return to winter next week. This is a tender reminder that vacations to tropical sites need not apply—we have the warmth right here, right now. And our privilege—and obligation—is to acknowledge, and savor it.